National Recording Project


Detail from: Memorial to 158 Squadron by Peter W. Naylor, 2009

Billy the Seal


Type Sculpture

     Reclining full-size seal on large block of stone. Two slate plaques attached to base with inscriptions in English and Welsh giving details of sculpture.
     The work was commissioned to celebrate the centenary of Victoria Park and was part of the general refurbishment and improvements to the Park. It was unveiled by the Mayor of Cardiff in June 1997.
     'Billy' the seal lived in the lake in Victoria Park from 1912 until his death in 1939. He had been trapped in the nets of a boat operating out of Cardiff Bay in 1912. He was a very popular local attraction, particularly after the flooding of 1927 when the River Ely overflowed and Billy escaped and swam down what is now Cowbridge Road East. 'Billy' in fact was a female seal.

Contributor details

Contributor Role
Petersen, David Sculptor

Element details

Part of work Material Dimensions
Seal Forged, mild steel, galvanised and painted 200cm long approx
Base Stone 122cm high. 2.5 tonne

PMSA recording information

Reference Region
General condition Good
Surface condition
  • Other
Structural condition
  • Other
  • Graffiti
Road Victoria Park Road
Precise location Victoria Park
A-Z ref 28 3C
OS ref None

Sorry, we have no precise geographical information for this item.

Date of design 1997
Year of unveiling 1997
Unveiling details Unveiled on 21st June 1997
Commissioned by Cardiff County Council through Cardiff Bay Arts Trust and the National Heritage Memorial Fund
Duty of care Cardiff County Council
Listing status Not listed
At risk? No known risk

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