Sidney Sweet-Escott who played for Glmaorgan between 1891 and 1899 was a member of the famous sporting famil, closely linked with Penarth and, through marriage, he also became closely associated with the Brain brewing dynasty.
He was one of seventeen children born to Reverend William Sweet-Escott, the Rector of Brompton Ralph, and his wife Louisa, who was the daughter of Lord Dynevor. Born at Carlton Rectory in Bedford, Sidney grew up in Somerset before the family moved to Penarth. After reading Law at Trinity College Oxford, Sidney entered the legal profession in Cardiff and was articled with Messrs Stephens, David and Co. who were based at the Bute Docks. Sidney also played rugby and cricket for both the town club and Glamorgan, often alongside his brothers Ralph and Rhys.
He duly became one of the mainstays of the Glamorgan side as the Club developed from being a third-class side into a fully-fledged Minor County. His brisk seam bowling proved an asset, most notably on his second appearance for Glamorgan in the trial game in 1891 against a Colts XXII at the Arms Park where his efforts with the ball outshone those of the paid professionals with the young solicitor taking 9/14. “His lively seam bowling proved to be a handful for the youngsters” was the view of one of the correspondents watching from the Press tent.
The following year, he took career-best figures of 7/41 in Monmouthshire’s second innings of their match at Rodney Parade. The Usksiders were also on the receiving end of his best batting performance, as in the game at Swansea in 1894 he blasted 82, and all whilst batting at number nine. It proved to be the one and only occasion when he scored fifty or more at county level, with his innings decorated by some lusty blows. His final major match came in 1899 when he played for the Gentlemen of Glamorgan against their professional counterparts at the Arms Park.
By this time, he had a young family having married, in 1895 Ethel Brain, the niece of his county captain Jack. Like so many of his generation however, Sidney and ‘Barbie’ were to lose their son, Lieutenant William Arthur who was killed in action in October 1918, just a month before the Armistice.
After retiring from playing cricket, Sidney took up golf and besides having a low handicap, he later
acted as Treasurer of the Glamorganshire Club. Sidney had given up his solicitors practice in 1906 to become a Director of Brain’s Brewery. He later became the company’s Chairman, holding the post from 1921 until his sudden death In October 1926 having contracted a particularly virulent form of influenza and dying within hours of taking to his bed.
SWEET-ESCOTT, William Sidney Rice.
Born – Bedford, 10 October 1867.
Died – Penarth, 29 October 1926.
Batting and Fielding Record
|MC Friendlies||2708||144||1433||77 (+1)||18.66||5||1|
Career best performances
Minor County Championship – 43 v Wiltshire at Trowbridge, 1898 and 2/32 v Berkshire at Cardiff Arms Park, 1899.
Minor County Friendlies – 82 v Monmouthshire at St. Helen’s, Swansea, 1894 and 9/14 v Colts XXII at Cardiff Arms Park, 1891.