Our Heritage

WT Howard Funerals was established in 1922 by William Thomas Howard and serviced a large area from Bulahdelah to Port Macquarie and inland to Gloucester. The business began its operations at 5 Flett Street, Taree, where it is still operating today. In the early days, horse-drawn funeral carriages were used. Mr Howard then introduced the first motorised hearse to the district; this was a T Model Ford, which he modified himself.

Ownership of WT Howard Funerals remained in the Howard family right through to 2000 when the Coulter family purchased the business. Terry and Elaine Miller moved to Taree in 2005, and purchased WT Howard Funerals and continued to maintain the tradition of being a proudly independent and family-owned business. We’ve provided exceptional service to the families of the Manning and Great Lakes areas for over 90 years whilst members of the Howard family continue to work within the business to this day.

Sadly Terry Miller passed away in November 2012. Elaine was committed to the local community, the staff and herself continued to grow the business, honouring its legacy as a well-respected and trusted organisation.

Late 2015 has become a significant turning point in the long history of WT Howard Funerals, after the loss of her beloved husband Terry, although committed to maintaining independent and locally owned, this was proving to much, it was with much regret the business was sold to an Australian investment company. The new owners are committed to maintaining the current staffing, faces, branding and the highest level of care that families of the Manning Valley and surrounds have known and trusted in recent times. 

Throughout the years, funeral services have changed, with an increased number of cremation services and the introduction of more individualised touches to the funeral itself. These include colour printing of service sheets, memorial books for mourners to sign at the service, and modern hearses and mourning cars. The graveside setting has been made more comfortable with tents and chairs, sound equipment, grass matting and lowering devices.

WT Howard Funerals has provided personalised, caring services to the families of the Manning and Great Lakes areas for more than 90 years. When you speak to us, you speak to a family that cares, understands your grief and is compassionate to your needs.

WT Howard Funerals is a member of the Australian Funeral Directors Association and remains at the forefront of the funeral industry and is highly respected throughout Australia. The long success of this iconic local business is based on the philosophy that life is full of precious memories and moments, and the funeral of a loved one is, indeed, one of those moments.