Cricket was first played in Dartford on the famous Dartford Brent (right), an extensive area of common land on the outskirts of the town. It was in use throughout the 18th century, having almost certainly been used during the 17th century as well.
Numerous match references from Dartford Brent have survived from 1709 to 1795. The earliest known inter-county match took place at Dartford Brent on 29th June 1709, when Kent played Surrey.
The All-England v Hampshire match played in August 1795 was the last time Dartford Brent is known to have been used for a major match. Games in Dartford after 1795 were played at Bowman’s Lodge on nearby Dartford Heath.
In the early 20th century Dartford Cricket Club returned to its original home, taking up residence in Hesketh Park, on ground that once formed part of the original Dartford Brent, and where it remains to this day.
The park was donated to the town in 1904 by local businessman and benefactor Everard Hesketh.