Sutton Poyntz has existed since some time perhaps 100 years before the Norman Conquest. For all but the last 100 years or so, there was a Manor of Sutton Poyntz, which included most of the two villages of Preston and Sutton Poyntz; originally owned by the King, this Manor was then owned by a succession of land-owning families. The Poyntz family were one of those families, and although they did not own Sutton Poyntz for very long before selling it to the Bryans, they gave their name to the village. The Poyntz's seem to have originated in Gloucestershire, but lived at Curry Mallet in Somerset for most of the time they owned Sutton Poyntz

All these families had significant land-holdings. Three of these families (Newburgh, Howard and Weld) were based at Lulworth Castle; the other three families, including the Harveys, lived and had their main land-holdings elsewhere, and probably would have visited Sutton Poyntz rarely, if at all.

All these families are interesting in different ways. The following pages look at the origins, family trees, and personalities of these families.

The last family to own the majority of Sutton Poyntz were the Weld's of Lulworth Castle. They decided to sell up in 1925 - the sale was a major event in the history of the village, and was the trigger for a rapid expansion of the village down Sutton Road and up Plaisters Lane.