Motor trade remembers well-known figure Andrew Bigmore

Tributes have been paid to Andrew Bigmore, manager of Cattermoles of Ipswich

Tributes have been paid to Andrew Bigmore, manager of Cattermoles of Ipswich - Credit: Family of Andrew Bigmore

Tributes are being paid to Andrew Bigmore, sales manager of Cattermoles of Ipswich, who has died aged 62.

Mr Bigmore was born on November 2, 1958, and passed away on June 3, 2021. Graham Keeble of John Keeble in Bramford has written the tribute below on behalf of the motor trade. 

If anyone says they have been involved with the used car trade in Ipswich over the last 40 years and they don’t know who Andrew Bigmore is, then they most probably haven’t.

Andrew was born in Ipswich nearly 63 years ago, the son of Brian and Heather Bigmore. Brian was a director of Cattermoles, West End Road.

Andrew attended school in Woodbridge, but his main interest and passion was cars, and he spent as much time as he could from an early age with his father at work.

When he left school he became an apprentice mechanic at Mann Egertons in Princes Street, although now in the motor trade this was never going to be his forte.

From there, he joined the Co-op Motor Group, selling Fiats at Station Garage in Burrell Road.

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He progressed to Henleys in Felixstowe Road, where he went to work in the used car department, stamping his authority under the formidable Les Nichols, from whom he no doubt learned some of his unconventional selling styles. He was their top selling person who took over running their used car department as manager.

It was then the opportunity presented itself to branch out independently and he joined and partnered Nigel Hall. On May 1, 1989, they formed Mayfields Garage in Bramford Road, with stock Nigel had in a field (hence the name Mayfields). Nigel and Andrew (chalk and cheese) sold hundreds of cars every year, and finished up specializing in Japanese 4X4s.

Nearly 14 years later, he realized his dream and joined the family firm, Cattermoles of Ipswich. It was soon apparent that he was going to change and transform how the sales department was to be run and he moved things forward. This gave his father Brian and another director, Ivan Cattermole, the opportunity to finally take retirement.

He ran the business his way, with the help of a trusted work colleague from his Mayfield days, Graham Hindle. His distinctive sales style was very individual. It was forthright, humorous, and you could say sarcastic, but it certainly worked and the customers liked it.

I remember reminiscing with him about the sales courses we attended in the early 1980s, and I can honestly say that Andrew did not follow many of the points, if any at all. But that was in his nature, he could read a customer and did not need a Greg Rigby (a supposed sales guru) to show him how to do it.

He was a man with the most amazing skill of finding out everything about you, but divulging nothing about himself. He had a nickname for everyone, a saying for every situation and a dry sense of humour.

Andrew Bigmore (alias Biggles/Fawlty), a true local motor trade character that will be greatly missed.

Andrew leaves behind a wife, Karen, and four children, Stephanie, Nicole, Emma and Jordan.

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