George Kett was born in Norfolk and was a skilled carpenter and wood carver. He moved to London with his wife Sarah and five children – George, Joanna, Edmund, and twins William and Alfred – to work on the interiors and furnishings of the new Palace of Westminster under architect and designer Augustus Pugin. Pugin was said to be so pleased with Kett’s finely detailed work that he chose him to carve the royal coat of arms in the Chamber of the House of Lords.
By 1848, Kett had moved to Cambridge to set up an architectural wood and stone carving business with James Rattee, whom he had met earlier in the late 1830’s whilst they were both employed in restoring Norwich Cathedral. Rattee was by now renowned locally as a highly skilled wood and stone craftsman. Their company was originally known as the Wood and Stone Carving Works, Cambridge, though its name was quickly changed to Rattee and Kett.
George and Sarah now had seven children, their new additions Susannah, born 1846 in London, and Frederick, born 1848 in Cambridge.
The company flourished, and Kett took over the responsibility of running it after the sudden death of James Rattee, at the age of 34, in 1855.
George Kett himself died in 1872, at the age of 63. His wife Sarah, who outlived him by 13 years, youngest son Frederick James who died in 1916, and youngest daughter Susannah Elizabeth, who died in 1941, are also buried in the tomb.
The headstone reads as:
‘George Kett born 26 June 1809 died 12 Aug 1872
and Sarah his wife born 22 April 1809 died 18 Nov 1885
“Passed from death into life” V John 24'
Son of the above died Dec 16 1916
Aged 68 years'
'And Susannah Elizabeth
born May 26 1846 died August 16 1941’
The surround reads as:
'Look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen'