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Sir Robert Ropner (1838 – 1924) emigrated to England from Germany in 1857 and founded the well known fleet of merchant ships that carried the family House Flag for over 100 years. Thorp Perrow Estate was purchased by his son, Sir William in 1927. Born in 1864, he was the third eldest of ten children.
Colonel Sir Leonard Ropner, was 32 years old when the Estate was bought and it was very soon afterwards that the planning and planting of the Arboretum began. It is not clear where this great love for trees came from – it was his son, Sir John’s joke that he should have collected French impressionist pictures but no such luck!
One of the nicest things about Thorp Perrow Arboretum is its slightly ‘amateurish’ atmosphere. It was after all designed and cared for by a man with no previous arboricultural experience – and this still remains the case today!