The area on which the Estate was formed has a long history.
Early habitation in the Mersey Basin is believed to date back around 10,000 years. The Warrington area would have been desirable in early times, as it was later, as a crossing point of the Mersey. The land around Grappenhall appears to have been an attractive settling place, perhaps due to its elevation which makes it safe from flooding. Whatever the reasons, Bronze Age artefacts have been found in Grappenhall.
In Roman times Wilderspool was both an important industrial area and, again, a crossing point over the Mersey. The approach road ran through Appleton and Stockton Heath, and at least one Roman coin, dating from AD69-79, has been found near the House site.
Grappenhall features in the Domesday Survey, where it is described as Gropenhale – probably meaning ‘a piece of flat land by the side of a river’. Accurate, if not very romantic!
Medieval farming patterns changed when enclosure came to Grappenhall in 1773, after which the land which formed the Estate was farmed under various ownerships. A Tithe Map of 1828-9 indicates that some of the land which made up the Estate was already owned by Thomas Parr, but other areas were held by different owners including – interestingly – one Jane Harper who owned a section covering some of the present Walled Garden site.