The Drummer, the bronze sculpture of a figure standing on a sphere beating a drum which currently takes centre stage on Lemon Quay in Truro, is going on a two-year holiday today.

The iconic 15ft bronze sculpture, which contains Cornish tin and copper, was officially unveiled by Queen drummer Roger Taylor outside the Hall for Cornwall back in 2011.

The Drummer will now be moved and put on display in a temporary new home at The Eden Project where it will still be enjoyed by the public during two years of works to refurbish the Hall for Cornwall. 

Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economy, said:  “We have been talking to Tim Shaw, the artist who created The Drummer, and Kier, which is carrying out the Hall for Cornwall refurbishment, about what best to do with The Drummer to ensure it is kept safe during construction work.

“The decision was made to move it to the Eden Project in order to keep it safe and allow residents and visitors to continue to enjoy it over the next two years.  We look forward to welcoming it back to Truro when the refurbishment of the Hall for Cornwall is complete.”

Cllr Egerton added: “As a partner, Cornwall Council is working with the team at Hall for Cornwall to realise the exciting vision for its refurbishment which, once reopened, will act as a great economic boost for our growing city.

“Having a world class cultural building at the heart of Truro offers us a great chance to achieve our growth aspirations in a way that respects local distinctiveness and provides a fantastic resource for the whole of Cornwall.”

The Drummer will be carefully loaded onto a lorry and put into storage on Tuesday whilst its new temporary home at the Eden Project is made ready. The removal will be carried out with a mobile crane supplied by Macsalvors who were originally involved in erecting the sculpture in June 2011. 

The sculpture is fixed to a concrete base spanning the culvert with four bolts attached to a metal base plate which will be released to lift the sculpture onto a waiting lorry.

Tim Shaw, the artist who created The Drummer, said:  “Cornwall Council has given full assurance that The Drummer will be re-instated once the Hall for Cornwall refurbishments are complete. 

I look forward to its safe return and when it does, I hope the words: 'Cornwall - A place where the drum beats differently’ will be inscribed upon the brass plaque. This originally intended quote together with written explanation should  provide insight into why this sculpture was created and what The Drummer symbolises. Meantime, there is perhaps an opportunity for everybody to explore new thoughts and ideas as to how Lemon Quay could look in the future.

Good wishes to all involved in the exciting Hall for Cornwall refurbishment. Thank you Eden Project for temporarily housing The Drummer.

Cornwall Councillor for Truro Boscawen Bert Biscoe said: “The Drummer was commissioned by Truro for Truro.  It may not be universally liked but it is a very important part of Truro’s modern future looking brand.  It may need to be moved temporarily but it must, must, must be back in its original location before Hall for Cornwall opens its doors on reopening night.”

Tim Shaw, who was elected an Academician at The Royal Academy of Arts in 2013, already has a major work of art at the Eden Project in the form of The Rites of Dionysus, depicting the Greek god of the vines in the form of a raging bull and eleven life-sized figures representing his followers, known as the Maenads.

Eden Project Chief Executive Gordon Seabright said of the pending arrival of The Drummer:  “We are delighted to be giving this wonderful sculpture a temporary home at Eden so people can continue to enjoy it while the work goes on at Lemon Quay.

“We already have some of Tim’s wonderful sculptures so having The Drummer here on holiday from Truro couldn’t be more appropriate.”