CRICKET AT KENSINGTON OVAL
Although not so attractively situated as Lord's, the Oval is better beloved by democratic cricketers, for it is the headquarters of the popular Surrey County Cricket Club and the chief scene of its many victories. The Oval, which is now exclusively devoted to the national summer game, covers nine acres of ground, a portion of which was laid out as a park by Sir Noel Caron, the Dutch Ambassador in the early part of the seventeenth century. The cricket ground was formed some fifty years ago, as a private speculation, and the Surrey Club rents it from the Duchy of Cornwall. Our view renders it easy to realise the immense size of the ground (which is almost circular in shape); and good eyesight is necessary for following the progress of the matches, even from the vantage-point of the enormous Grand Stand.
source: The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896