He was married to Ragnhild, daughter of Harald, King of Norway. Godred supported Harald in his war against the English King Harold. At the battle of Stamford Bridge in 1066, Harald was killed, but Godred escaped and made his way back to Islay.
After winning the battle of Sky Hill on the Isle of Man, he became king of Man and the Isles in 1079, and ruled the Sudreys till his death in 1095. Tradition has it that he is buried in Islay, close to Carragh Bhan, a standing stone near Kintra Farm.
His descendants continued to rule till 1153. One of his grand-daughters married Somerled, Lord of Argyll, who was the predecessor of the Lords of the Isles.