There are a number of famous and some infamous Needham's. The famous include James Needham, King Henry VIII's surveyor general, Marchmount Needham, the writer, Sir John Needham, judge, Charles Needham the 4th viscount of Kilmorey, Francis Jack Needham, the first Earl of Kilmorey, and George Nedham, one of the first speakers of the Jamaican parliament whilst the most notorious must be Ellis Needham of Litton Mill fame
A number of Needham's have been knighted (source 1):
Sir John Needham: May 26, 1465, Order of the Bath, Ascension Day, Tower of London, on the occasion of the Coronation of Elizabeth, Queen of Edward IV. John was a Justice in the Court of Common Pleas.
Sir Robert Needham: June 1, 1533, Order of the Bath, Whitsun, Westminster Abbey, on the occasion of the Coronation of Anne Boleyn, Queen of Henry VIII. Robert was Sherrif of Shropshire
Sir Robert Needham knighted in September, 1594, on a hill near Enniskillen, by Sir William Russel, Knight, Lord Deputy of Ireland.
Sir John Needham: June 23, 1603, Royal Garden at Whitehall, on the occasion of the Coronation of King James I. John was of County Northampton.
Sir Francis Needham: November 8, 1617, Order of the Bath, Hatton House , by King James I
Sir Robert Needham: June 4, 1630, St. James, by King Charles I
Sir Joseph Needham: February 13, 1873, by Letter of Patent. Joseph was Chief Justice of the Island of Trinidad.
Sir Francis Charles Needham: May 24, 1890, Order of St. Patrick #109, St. Patrick’s Hall, Dublin, Ireland, Francis was the 3rd Earl of Kilmorey, Knight of the Grace of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem.
Sir Frederick Needham: 1915, in recognition of his work in medicine.
Sir Christopher Thomas Needham: 1919, Christopher was an M.P. from Manchester S.W.
Sir George William Needham: 1920
Sir Richard Arthur Needham: 1932, Knight Bachelor, Colonel, M.D.
Sir Raymond Walker Needham: 1957, Knight Bachelor, QC, JP, FSA
1. Supplied by Keith Insco