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In the Middle Ages the manor of Highnam belonged to the abbot of Gloucester. It was granted by the Crown in 1542 to John Arnold (died 1545), who had leased the site since 1516. On his death it was inherited by his son Nicholas, who by 1552 had been knighted, was later sheriff and MP, and attempted to improve the breed of English horses. His heir was his granddaughter Dorothy (died 1580), who was married to Thomas Lucy (knighted 1593, died 1605). Their daughter Joyce was married to Sir William Cooke MP (died 1618), and father then followed son, the following being lord: Robert, MP (knighted 1621, died 1643); William, MP (died in about 1700), for whom the present house was built; Edward (died in about 1724); and Dennis (died 1747). The last was succeeded by his sisters, one of whose son, John Guise, reunited the manor in 1769 having lived at the house since 1757 or before. John, who inherited a baronetcy in 1783, held Highnam until his death in 1794, during which time he much improved the interior of the house and landscaped its surrounds. It next passed to his son Sir Berkeley William Guise (died 1834), whose brother and heir, Sir John Wright Guise, sold the manor in 1838 to Thomas Gambier Parry. Parry, who became well known as a painter of frescoes and a collector of works of art, had James Pulham lay out extensive new gardens in the 1840s. After Parry's death in 1888 his widow Ethelinda held Highnam until her death in 1896. It then passed to Parry's son by his first wife, Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, composer (created baronet 1902, died 1918), who was succeeded by his half-brother Ernest Gambier Parry (died 1936). His son, Thomas Mark Gambier Parry lived on at Highnam until his death in 1966. The house, gardens, and a small part of the park passed into separate ownership in 1977. Both this property and the remainder of the park remain (1999) in private hands.

People associated with this site

Architect: David Brandon (born 1813 died 1897)

Architect: Edward Carter (died 1663)

Builder: James Pulham (1) (died 1838)

Architect: Lewis Vulliamy (born 15/03/1791 died 04/01/1871)









yew walk


Gravel walk.


The stream has long been dammed to form the pools.