Dartford Heath Big Cat (2006)
Helen Wagstaff in a 23 December 2006 story entitled ‘2 more big cats sighted in county’ (Kentonline) gives the following account of an experience around Dartford Heath.
A man contacted the Kent Big Cat Research Group to report a labrador-sized creature he saw while driving towards Dartford on the A2018.
He told Mr Arnold (of the Kent Big Cat Research Group) that the animal had been on the grass verge just beyond the Rochester Way turn off, but when he approached it shot across the road into Dartford Heath.
Mr Arnold said: “The witness told me it was a big black cat, Labrador-size, which he’d never seen anything like before.”
Mr Arnold, who has been tracking Kent’s big cats since 1968, said the animal was likely to be the same one spotted previously in the area.
He added: “Some 30 or 40 years ago, it became very trendy for people to own a black leopard or similar big cat as a pet.
“But the Dangerous Wild Animals Act introduced in the mid-1970s meant owners of an exotic cat would need a licence, which was costly.”