The ‘Drummer’ sculpture returns to Lemon Quay

The Drummer sculpture, created by artist and sculptor Tim Shaw, will be returning to Lemon Quay on Tuesday 16th November.

The sculpture was commissioned by Cornwall Council and was installed in the centre of Truro in 2011.

However, in 2018, the sculpture had to be temporarily moved whilst works were carried out on the Hall for Cornwall. It was relocated to the Eden Project, where it remained on display for the duration of the redevelopment of Truro’s theatre.

The 15ft sculpture represents Cornish identity, symbolising a place where ‘the drum beats differently’. The cast contains both Cornish tin and copper; the emblem upon the drum refers to Truro’s past as a stannary town, where tin was weighed, stamped and sold; and the decision to use the ball on which the figure balances was inspired by Lemon Quay’s circular paving design, which refers to the tidal river beneath it.

When describing the idea behind the artwork, Shaw said: “It was no surprise that when I first set foot in Cornwall, over thirty-five years ago, I described it as a place where the drum beats differently, referring to the primordial, magical, and timeless aspect that the land possesses. This came to mind, when in 2007, I was invited to submit a proposal for a sculpture for Truro’s Lemon Quay. I viewed the opportunity as a chance to celebrate something that would reflect an aspect of Cornwall and its people.

“In the time between the Drummer’s removal from Lemon Quay and its return, huge changes
have occurred globally and also in our county where we have witnessed the reshaping of its

“In this time of rapid change and development, it is vitally important that we protect the
uniqueness of Cornwall–its beauty and feeling of ‘otherness’–so that we can continue to
experience and celebrate it as a place where the drum beats differently.”

Mayor of Truro, Cllr Steven Webb, added: “Art is often a controversial subject and different
people have varied taste. However, I very much like The Drummer and it does make me
smile when people stop to appreciate the art.”


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