Sir Thomas Gargrave was born in 1495 where his parents Thomas and Elizabeth raised him in Normanton, West Yorkshire. He received a prestigious education at either Gray’s Inn or the Middle Temple.
Gargrave’s first employment was with Thomas Darcy, 1st Baron Darcy de Darcy (or Lord Darcy of the North). This employment helped Gargrave and was appointed Knight of the Shire for Yorkshire in 1553 – 1555. Gargrave received many more postings in the North ranging from Deputy Constable for Pontefract Castle to Reciever of the Exchequer for Yorkshire.
In 1559 Gargrave received a higher honour, he was elected speaker in Queen Elizabeth’s first parliamend and on 25th January 1559 he gave an address in which he urged the new queen to take a husband.
In 1562 Gargrave served as a Member of Parliament for York and on 5th November 1566 he was one of 30 MP’s that were called in front of the Queen to hear her message on the subject of her succession.
Sir Thomas Gargrave died on 28th March 1579 and is buried in St Michael and Our Lady Church within the grounds of his family home as Nostell Priory.