His attestation papers note that he was working as a cowman and that he had previous military experience having served with the 1st Royal Sussex. He was on the National Reserve at the time of his attestation.
During his time in the army, the Chailey Parish Magazine had kept track of him too. In February 1916, it had noted obliquely: Sweetman, Pte F E,
later, it had reported that he was with the 2nd Royal Sussex Regiment in
England and in May the same year he was reported as being with the 3rd Royal
Sussex; then, by November 1916, still in England but invalided. Ry Sup, Eng.
In January 1917 he is noted as being invalided and discharged and his name appears in the magazine for the last time in March 1917 as, Sweetman, Pte F E, 3rd Royal
. Invalided and discharged. Sussex