The Culm Valley estate agents.

We are based in Cullompton on junction 28 of the M5 between Exeter and Taunton.


The story of Thorne and Carter unfolds across three centuries of estate agency, auctioneering and surveying in the Culm Valley.

The practice was originally founded in the mid 1800s in Willand by William Thorne. When he retired towards the end of the century his son, Bill Thorne, was too young to take over the practice and so there was a gap of some years until Bill Thorne restarted the firm, again in Willand in 1911.

In the 1930s Bill Thorne relocated the practice to the larger town of Cullompton and on his retirement in 1950 the practice was acquired by the late Ken Carter and had by then moved offices to Church Street.

The changing face of estate agency later necessitated the move to 29 High Street, a large three storey Victorian property. Ken Carter in partnership with his son Stephen ran a thriving multi-disciplined chartered surveyors practice specialising in residential sales, surveys, farm sales and associated agricultural work, with the firm even having its own livestock market based at Tiverton Junction in Willand.

At the end of 1988 Ken Carter retired and his son Stephen formed a new partnership with Clive Madge, who had been specialising in the agricultural and professional side of the practice, together with John Parkin who had been handling the residential sales.

Throughout the 1990s steady growth in the residential sales resulted in increased staff and emphasised the need for even larger premises in a more prominent and central High Street position. With this in mind the partners acquired 11 & 13 High Street fondly known locally as the “Old Police Station”.

During much of the autumn of 1999 the premises underwent a complete refurbishment and remodelling including the former “cells” being integrated into the company’s boardroom.

Following his retirement from the partnership Stephen Carter continued as a consultant for several years before retiring fully.

John and Clive continue in partnership with their long standing experienced team in both the residential and professional departments.

The firm has recently welcomed Henry Parkin to the residential department bringing youth and many new ideas whilst being the third father/son combination in the practice.

A nostalgic inspection of the archives reveals that the first property sold under the Thorne and Carter partnership was near Taunton in February 1951 selling for £3,500 and earned the company the princely sum of £29 in commission! Interestingly the same property sold in 2012 for £320,000. This at the time when a gallon of petrol cost 3 shillings 6 pence (17½p), a loaf of bread was 6 pence (2½p) and a brand new Morris Minor car would set you back £520 whilst the internet was not even a distant dream!


The Team

Clive Madge BSc MRICS FAAV

Chartered Surveyor.
Fellow of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.
RICS registered valuer.

Clive specialises in surveys of residential property and valuation, sale and letting of commercial and agricultural property. He also heads up our residential letting department. After studying estate management at London University and subsequent training positions Clive has been engaged with Thorne and Carter in both professional and agency work in Mid Devon since joining the firm in 1976. He became a partner in 1989. Clive is therefore well versed in the local property market and draws on a wealth of experience in his work.

John Parkin FNAEA

Fellow of the National Association of Estate Agents.

John is in charge of the valuation, marketing and sale of residential property, from town cottage to country house. John comes from a background of law and subsequently trained with a large multi office firm of estate agents in Hampshire before moving to Devon in 1979 to manage the residential department of an Exeter based rural practice. John became an equity partner of Thorne and Carter in 1989 and offers an immense breadth of expertise combined with local knowledge and experience. When not as work, John is active within the local community and is a keen cricketer playing for the local village team of Kentisbeare.

Henry Parkin Associate

Henry joined Thorne and Carter at the start of 2014, after studying at the University of Gloucestershire he then decided to pursue a career in property. Born and raised in Kentisbeare Henry has acquired a great understanding of the Culm Valley property market building on his many contacts and strong geographical knowledge of the area. Henry represents the third father and son team at Thorne and Carter and his friendly knowledgeable approach has made him popular with buyers and sellers alike. In his spare time Henry is the captain of Willand’s tennis team as well as playing other sports in the community.

Will Pring BA Hons – Valuer/Negotiator

Will is the most recent member of our team and brings with him a large amount of experience having worked for a number of estate agents in Exeter. Away from work will is very much a local person  having lived in the Cullompton and Willand areas most of his life, he is also very involved with the hugely successful Cullompton Rugby Club.

Alison Underhill

Alison joined Thorne and Carter 20 years ago progressing to become a vital part of the rapidly expanding residential sales and lettings department. As a long standing “Cullomptonian” Alison has a vast network of local contacts with her family having grown up in the town.

Jenny Hellier

Jenny, like Maya, has been part of the Thorne and Carter team having originally joined 17 years ago shortly before their move to larger premises in 2000. Jenny provides secretarial/administrative support to both the residential and professional departments on a job share basis, skilfully combining her role with the demands of her young family.

Judy Barton

Judy became involved with Thorne and Carter through sale and purchase of her own properties in Hemyock – in fact she liked the firm so much she joined it! Judy now provides part time secretarial/administrative assistance and back up primarily to the rural and surveying side of the firm.

Jo Blackmore – Sales and professional services

Jo has recently joined the team and brings with her a wealth of valuable knowledge having previously worked for a firm of Solicitors. Jo lives in Cullompton and is very involved with the local community especially Cullompton Cricket Club.

Church Street, Cullompton


  • Thorne & Carter have been a very pro-active, on the ball estate agent. I have found them very pleasant and easy to deal with and to be very professional.

    Mrs J. Smith

  • Service is above and beyond other agents in what is a stressful time.

    House seller, Uffculme

  • We were impressed with John Parkin's knowledge and communication throughout our purchase.

    House purchaser, Willand

  • A personal, friendly service.

    House purchaser, Willand

  • John's dedication and time he gave us along with the quality advice that we trusted

    House seller, Blackborough

  • Absolutely first-class service throughout

    House purchaser, Cullompton

  • The flexibility of the staff to make viewings out of normal hours – also all members of staff have been so friendly and helpful, nothing, however silly has been too much trouble

    House purchaser, Cullompton

  • Just to say thanks very much – we were thrilled that our house was sold so quickly

    House seller, Uffculme

  • We were very impressed with John especially on the initial visit to us and knew we had chosen the right firm

    House seller, Uffculme

  • Polite and professional

    House buyer, Cullompton

  • Service was as expected. I see no room for improvement

    First time buyer

  • What impressed us was the number of viewings over a short period of time… so advertising etc must be very good

    Previous Customer