England Cricketer E.M. Grace possessions on show at SS Great Britain

E.M. Grace
©Brunel’s SS Great Britain
E.M. Grace
©Brunel’s SS Great Britain

On show this week at Brunel’s SS Great Britain, Bristol, is the personal diary of the famous All-England Team cricketer E.M. Grace. Brother of the arguably better-known W.G. Grace, Edward Mills Grace was a member of George Parr’s All-England XI who made the very second tour of Australia in 1863. The team were passengers on board the SS Great Britain, the iron steamship designed by Brunel which was to change the world of maritime engineering.

The 1863-64 touring side remained unbeaten throughout their southern hemisphere stay. E.M. Grace, the only non-professional in the team, featured prominently; he was awarded a silver commemorative ball “for excellent wicket keeping” which is also being exhibited by conservators at the SS Great Britain now.

The All-England cricket team made their first tour of Australia in 1861-62, transported by the SS Great Britain and landing in Melbourne on the 23rd of December. These initial tours were of course the precursors to test match cricket between England and Australia, laying the foundations for The Ashes series as we know it today.

Find out more about this archive showing and others at ssgreatbritain.org/whats-on/archive-five.

About Brunel’s SS Great Britain:

  1. Brunel’s SS Great Britain is the world’s first great ocean liner and the most innovative steam ship of her time. Launched in 1843, this iron-hulled steamship revolutionised travel and set new standards in engineering, reliability and speed. Today, Brunel’s SS Great Britain is Bristol’s no.1 visitor attraction (as voted by the public on Trip Advisor) and home to the Brunel Institute, housing one of the world’s finest maritime and Brunel collections.
  2. Please note, for brand continuity, the attraction is ‘Brunel’s SS Great Britain’, the ship herself is the ‘SS Great Britain’, the charity which manages and maintains the ship is the ‘SS Great Britain Trust’ and the trading branch of the charity is ‘SS Great Britain Trading Ltd.’
  3. Brunel’s SS Great Britain has won over 30 major awards covering heritage, tourism, conservation, access, education, venue hire and customer service; including:
  • 3* in Michelin Guide to Great Britain, 2012
  • Rough Guide to Accessible Britain, 2010
  • England’s Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, 2007
  • UK Museum of the Year 2006



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