John Bell (Kent cricketer)

For other people with the same name, see John Bell (disambiguation).

John Bell (born in 1718 at Dartford in Kent; died at Dartford in January 1774) was a noted English cricketer of the mid-Georgian period at a time when the single wicket version of the game was popular. He was an accomplished wicket-keeper with Dartford and Kent who also played many times for All-England teams.

John Bell's occupation was probably shoemaker, a trade known to have been followed by several of his family. But in 1760 he took over the Eleven Cricketers public house on East Hill in Dartford, remaining there till his death in January 1774 at the age of fifty-five. A few days later the newspaper Bingley's London Journal referred to him as "the most noted cricketer in England".[1]

Thomas Bell, brother of John, also played for Dartford and All-England. In 1762, Thomas Bell was condemned to death at Maidstone Assizes for highway robbery, but was later reprieved. Nothing more is known of him.[1]


  1. 1 2 F S Ashley-Cooper, At the Sign of the Wicket: Cricket 1742-1751, Cricket Magazine, 1900


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