A body believed to be that of a renowned artist who was suffering from dementia has been found in a field three days after he vanished from a hospital.
Roger Cecil, whose work focused on the industrial valley in south Wales where he was born and lived his whole life, disappeared from the Royal Gwent hospital in Newport on Saturday afternoon.
A body was found by a member of the public on Tuesday afternoon in a field in Cwmbran, about seven miles from the hospital and on the route that would have taken him back to his home town of Abertillery.
Gwent police said: “Whilst the formal identification process has yet to be completed sadly it’s thought that the body is that of Mr Cecil. At this time the death is being treated as unexplained and Mr Cecil’s family have been informed and will be supported at this difficult time.”
Cecil, 72, was born in Abertillery, a former mining centre that borders the Brecon Beacons national park. He studied at Newport College of Art and did his MA at St Martin’s School of Art. He featured in a BBC documentary in 1964 in which he described the pressures on him to get a “real job” rather than follow his passion for art. He used everyday materials in his work – including grate blacking and metal primer as well as conventional materials.
Jeff Towns, a Dylan Thomas expert, was among the first to pay tribute to Cecil in a tweet.