Reid, Reverend Edward
The Reverend Edward Reid, arriving in Exeter to take charge of the parish of St James, appeared on the scene just as St Sidwell’s United had become Exeter City. With recent Southern League experience with Swindon Town he was an eyecatching, if somewhat fortuitous signing. Appearing in the first side to bear the name of Exeter City in September 1904 he was top-scorer in 1904/05 and played three seasons before concentrating on his ecclesiastical career.
With a father from Dorset, he was born in Newfoundland (Canada) in 1878 and played in 11 of the 14 recorded games in 1904/05 - scoring 16 times - before adding 12 appearances (7 goals) in 1905/06 and another 18 in 1906/07 when he scored 5 times.
In 1906 the Football Express, describing him as “a versatile exponent of the soccer code”, explained how he had played association football at school in St John’s, Newfoundland before coming to England to study at Oxford in 1897. Later ordained in Gloucestershire, he played amateur football in the Cirencester and Swindon areas before appearing 20 times (plus three FA Cup appearances) for Southern League Swindon Town between 1902/03 and 1904/05.
Arriving in Exeter to become curate of St James Church, then on the site of the current car park at St James’ Park prior to its eventual destruction in 1942, he appeared just as St Sidwell’s United were becoming Exeter City. As something of a ‘windfall' signing he became a leading light in Exeter City’s new campaign scoring nine goals in three games in October 1904. His form was sufficient for him to be selected for the Devon county side and to receive an offer to make a Southern League appearance for Plymouth Argyle against Bristol City in October 1905 when, according to press reporting he made a "very favourable impression”.
Finishing playing just before City’s final amateur season, he now concentrated on his church career and became chaplain to the Bishop of Exeter and commissioner for the Bishop of Bermuda but not without serving as president of the Exeter City supporters' club in 1919. Later curate of St Mary Arches in Exeter, and a member of the local Home Guard in World War Two, he retired to Gloucestershire where he died in 1959 and is buried in the village of Redmarley D’Abitot.