On 15 September 1906 Victoria Park opened to the public. It replaced an earlier pleasure park on Dargan Island, now Queen’s Island. Victoria Park features a lake, originally used for boating, with two small wooded islands which offer sanctuary for nesting swans and ducks. The park once had an Edwardian swimming pool which was in use until the 1970s.
Today Victoria Park is designated as an Area of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI) and is part of the Special Protection Area (SPA). Birdlife is abundant in the park, particularly in the winter months. Species found in the park include greylag geese, blackheaded and herring gull, heron, mute swan, mallard, tufted duck, and pied and grey wagtail. The mudflats surrounding the park are rich in oysters, cockles, snails and worms, such as lugworms and ragworms. These provide a vital source for populations of wintering waders and wildfowl, including oyster catchers, terns and redshank.