1971 (first-class)
Rugby, tennis
13:43, Fri Jan 21, 2022 (UTC +0000)
Rectory Field


The formation of the Blackheath Cricket, Football and Lawn Tennis Company led to the development of the Rectory Field as the home for Blackheath CC and sport began to be played there in 1886. In addition to cricket, it rapidly became a famous venue for rugby - the Blackheath Rugby Club along with Richmond, being one of the oldest clubs in the world - and hosted many internationals (England v Scotland notably) around the turn of the century, including the first-ever match between England and Wales in 1880-81. The Rectory Field was used by Kent from 1887 through to 1971, with the majority of the matches being local clashes with Surrey. The ground itself only has one permanent structure, the pavilion, and the other accommodation was all temporary. But with car parking an increasing issue and Kent looking to consolidate at Canterbury, the venue was dropped. Sadly, the last Championship game was a dull match against Derbyshire with top names all on Test duty - hardly a fitting end. At least Kent signed off against their old foes, Surrey, in a Benson & Hedges Cup tie in 1972 which ended with the scores tied.
Martin Williamson

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A general view of Blackheath in 1964
A general view of Blackheath in 1964
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