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Dartford Local Information: 10 top things to know... more

  • 1. History

    A building of historical significance in Dartford is the remains of the Manor House, built between 1541 and 1544 for Henry VIII’s personal use. In 1545 the Privy Council met at the building and then Anne of Cleves lived there from 1553 until shortly before her death in 1557. The gatehouse, in Priory Road, is all that is left of the building. There are 11 churches in Dartford...Read more that were mentioned in the Domesday Book, including Holy Trinity, in the town centre, parts of which date back to between 1050 and 1080. Read less

  • 2. Now

    Dartford is a market town with a rich history, but also has modern facilities such as the famous Bluewater Shopping Centre and Dartford Dojo - the coaching centre for the British Judo Association and home to the internationally renowned Dartford Judo Club.

  • 3. Events

    One of the biggest annual events in the town is the Dartford Festival, in July. The festival takes place in Central Park and includes live music from big names, activities, stalls and more. The Dartford Festival of Light is held in October and involves hundreds of schoolchildren parading through the town centre with torches and lanterns. Bands also take part in the procession....Read more The Dartford Community Mela is held in August to celebrate the diversity of the borough through music, food and dance. Read less

  • 4. Attractions

    Dartford Borough Museum tells the history of the area through permanent and temporary exhibitions and collections. Dartford Heath is an area of outstanding natural beauty and includes plenty of wildlife, three ponds and the Glory Bumps – man-made ridges and furrows that form a mosaic of bare sandy ground. The bumps were created when minerals were extracted on the site. Eag...Read morele Heights is a wildlife park in Eynsford, near Dartford. This attraction has around 200 birds, a reptile house, meerkats, otters and a cheetah. The site also includes a cafe, flying arena, play area and shop. Read less

  • 5. Things To Do

    Central Park, near the town centre, dates back to 1906 and is part of an ongoing regeneration project. The park has sports facilities, open space, gardens, a café and visitor centre, a water play area, outdoor fitness equipment and skatepark. Fairfield Pool and Leisure Centre includes a main swimming pool, a teaching pool, a gym, a health suite, soft play facilities, fitness ...Read morestudio and squash courts. Read less

  • 6. Business

    The Bluewater Shopping Centre is a huge indoor shopping facility in Greenhithe, containing over 300 stores on two levels. The centre also has cafes and restaurants and a 13-screen cinema. Traditional weekly markets are held on Thursdays and Saturdays in Dartford. The Thursday market includes more than 200 stalls selling a wide selection, food, drink and goods, while the Saturd...Read moreay market has around 100 stalls. The Orchards Shopping Centre, in the heart of the town, has 36 shops, including high street names and independent traders. The Priory Centre has over 40 shops, including many big names. Read less

  • 7. Transport

    London City Airport is the nearest airport and offers domestic and international flights. It is about eight miles from the centre of town. Southend Airport is 23 miles away, London Gatwick is 27 miles away, Heathrow is 29 miles away and Stansted is 30 miles away. Dartford Train Station is a five-minute walk from the town centre and has direct services to London’s Charing Cro...Read moress, Canon Street, Waterloo East, London Bridge and London Victoria. The North Kent Line runs from Dartford to the Medway towns and the Kent coast. By car, Dartford is situated next to junctions 1 and 2 of the M25 motorway. The A2 is the main road running to the east and west of the town. Read less

  • 8. Entertainment

    The Orchard Theatre, in the town centre, offers a good variety of live entertainment including West End musicals, pantomimes, top comedians, bands, dramas and classical music and opera. The Mick Jagger Centre is a venue for live music and arts and also includes a recording studio, rehearsal rooms, a music technology suite, a visual arts suite, a dance/drama room and more. Th...Read moree Miskin Theatre, at the North West Kent College’s Dartford campus, has a main theatre, studio theatre, dance studios, rehearsal spaces and recording studios. The theatre creates its own productions and also has visiting companies. Read less

  • 9. Famous Landmarks

    The Dartford Thurrock River Crossing takes traffic across the River Thames from Kent to Essex. The first tunnel at the site was completed in 1963 and cost £13 million to build. A second tunnel was added in May 1980 at a cost of £45 million. The volume of traffic through the tunnels was so high, something else had to be done and The Queen Elizabeth II Bridge was built and offi...Read morecially opened by Her Majesty in October 1991. Read less

  • 10. Interesting Fact

    Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger was born in Dartford in 1943 and grew up in the area. The Rolling Stones were born when Mick met up with old school friend Keith Richards on the Dartford train line.

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  • Strictly stars are a panto hit

    Anne Widdecombe and Craig Revel Horwood were so popular in pantomime, an extra week had to be added to their show. The retired MP and Strictly Come Dancing judge starred in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at The Orchard...

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  • Budding reporters get a helping hand

    Budding young reporters are being given a chance to do some real reporting thanks to an innovative project. The Young Reporter scheme is being run by the News Shopper newspaper and website for schoolchildren in and around the Dartford area....

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  • Schoolboy saves family from fire

    A brave 12-year-old has been hailed a hero after his quick-thinking actions saved his mum and disabled brother from a house fire. Robert Noubime was at his flat in Nursery Close, Dartford, watching television when he smelt burning. He went to...

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  • Celebrities wow shoppers

    Celebrities have been popping up to keep Christmas shoppers entertained at the Bluewater Shopping Centre. Members of the public were delighted to see Peter Andre appear at the centre to launch the Christmas in New York...

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