The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. The course is in Central Park, Dartford. The course is run on a mixture of tarmac paths, trail paths and grass. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Dartford parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Runners wishing to run with a dog are welcome, but please keep the dog on a short lead or harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are also welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.
  • While rare, Lyme Disease is present in areas where deer live, and occasionally passed to human’s through infected ticks. See NHS Choices website for more about Lyme Disease, and how to deal with ticks.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Dartford parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

This is a 2 1/2 lap course, which begins with a 700m anti-clockwise loop of the main field, starting between the two trees outside the Central Park Athletics clubhouse. On the second and third laps, cross the Ellenor Lions bridge, and turn right down a grassy trail. At the end, turn left at the end and run uphill for 130m, before emerging from the trees. Turn left again, and run in a straight line along the right-hand edge of the open field (these will be marked with football pitches except during summer) towards the cones at Ivy Leaf Corner. Turn left again (rounding the signpost), and head down the path back to cross the Ellenor Lions Bridge back to the main field of Central Park. Once over the bridge, bear right, and continue on this path passing the cafe on your right-hand side. Continue on this path until you reach the bandstand, where you will turn right, passing through trees and hedges on either side, before being directed left at the Medieval Bridge, and left again, back towards the bandstand. Turn right to complete an anti-clockwise loop of the bandstand area, and use the gravel path by the outdoor gym to re-join the path back towards the clubhouse. The final turn will be defined by a number of cones between the dog litter bin and the public toilets.

Facilities

Close to the start are toilets including disabled toilet, hot/cold drinks available from Dartford Harriers Clubhouse. Ample free car parking. A short walk from the start there is a children’s playground, seasonal café, seasonal children’s water play area, skate park, walks and formal flower gardens.

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts between the two trees outside the Central Park Athletics clubhouse.

Getting there by public transport

Train: : The nearest main line train station is Dartford - please visit the National Rail website for timetables. The run venue is approximately 10 minutes’ walk from the station, through the town centre.

Bus: Many local bus routes stop nearby in Market Street and Home Gardens. Local buses are mainly run by Arriva. Check the Ariva website for timetables.
A few local buses (96, 428 & 492) are run on behalf of Transport for London. For timetables visit the Transport for London website

Getting there on foot

There are entrances into Central Park in Market Street, Cranford Road, Lowfield Street and Darenth Road. You can also access the Park from Princes Road and the Princes Tunnels. Central Park Athletics Track can be found at the southerly end of the park.

Getting there by road

If using SATNAV, the nearest postcode is DA1 1JP.
From the M25 at the Dartford Crossing approach: Exit M25 at Junction 2; take the A225 towards Dartford on Princes Road; straight across next roundabout (junction w/Green Street Green Road & Park Road); down the hill on Princes Road. At the traffic lights, turn right onto Lowfield Street and 100 metres along take the second turning on the right onto Cranford Road, straight on through the gates to Central Park (5 mph speed limit) and follow the road around to the right into the car park.
Free car parking is available at Central Park Athletics Track. There is also car parking available in Dartford town centre. For car park details visit the Council's parking pages

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in the Central Park Athletics Track, Dartford Harriers Clubhouse - please come and join us!