Doctor Who Cuttings Archive

Dr Who fans step into time machine

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1989-07-01 Sandwell Evening Mail.jpg


Today really is quite out of this world for hundreds of collectors who have travelled to the Midlands for a birthday party with a difference.

And "Many happy returns' has special meaning at the New Imperial Hotel In Temple Street. for the armchair time and space travellers whose talk is of Cybermen, Ice Warriors, Tardis and, of course, Daleks.

For these are Dr Who enthusiasts, mostly people too young to have seen - or even to have been born - when the first episode of the black and white children's television programme was transmitted by the BBC 26 years ago.


The gathering in Birmingham today is to celebrate the tenth birthday of Dr Who Magazine. the weekly publication which Is produced by Marvel Comics.

The magazine developed from a regular picture strip in TV Comic which used it from 1964 until 1979 when Morsel bought the rights. That Autumn they started Dr Who Weekly which rapidly proved good seller and after 43 issues it became a monthly publication which after several changes of title, settled on Dr Who Magazine.

Today, its editor, Mr John Freeman, is guest of honour at a Comic and Telefantasy Mart in Birmingham which focuses on ten years of Dr Who Magazine, but also catering for collectors of other related items including old and new comics, films, television, books and toys.

Displays include original artwork, books, comics, badges and lots of models and kits. The West Midland Dr Who group, The Whonatics has been seeking original items from the programmes for exhibition. Dealers offered Sixties and Seventies memorabilia, model toys, old film posters record, photographs and video tapes of various science fiction epics. The doors opened at mid-day and admission was free.

The amazing rise of character from an obscure children. television programme to cult status with a worldwide view lag audience of 125 million is a wonder in itself.

Not only is this the BBC's longest running television series, it is the longest-running science-fiction based series in the world.

The programme has been bought by practically every country in the world which has a TV network and is believed to be the BBC's biggest overseas money earner.

Yet when the programme first went on the air at 5.25pm on Saturday, November 23. 1963. (ten minutes late due to extended news coverage of President John Kennedy's assassination in Dallas) It was intended to make only 13 episodes.

They were intended as an educational historical drama series about teenage girl and her grandfather owning a time machine, able to takes them and their companions back in time to famous places. The first programme was set in prehistoric times.

But new script writer, Terry Nation, changed the entire concept, moving into fantasy and science fiction with the Time and Relative Dimensions in is Space vehicle. The Tardis, in the form of on old blue Police phone box.

It says much for the programme that is has gone from strength to strength, despite the passage of more than quarter of century, and despite numerous changes of leading actor.

Caption: The 50th issue featuring the first four doctors (top) Tom Baker (bottom, from left) William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee.

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  • APA 6th ed.: (1989-07-01). Dr Who fans step into time machine. Sandwell Evening Mail p. 23.
  • MLA 7th ed.: "Dr Who fans step into time machine." Sandwell Evening Mail [add city] 1989-07-01, 23. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: "Dr Who fans step into time machine." Sandwell Evening Mail, edition, sec., 1989-07-01
  • Turabian: "Dr Who fans step into time machine." Sandwell Evening Mail, 1989-07-01, section, 23 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Dr Who fans step into time machine | url= | work=Sandwell Evening Mail | pages=23 | date=1989-07-01 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=25 February 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Dr Who fans step into time machine | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=25 February 2024}}</ref>