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Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor?

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THE one-off Dr Who exhibition in March proved to be so successful last month that the three owners are now looking to hold a special one-day seminar.

On April 20 A whole load of Dr Who disciples will be descending on Oaklands Park House, Newdigate, to enviously eye-up the private collection and also to show off their own pride-and-joys.

Brother and sister Simon and Sarah Gray, with pal Matt Parish, started collecting Dr Who memorabilia seven years ago.

Now, they have an enormous collection of costumes, props and monsters that would have any Whovian obsessive crying with jealousy. JENNIFER FRYER went along to meet the quirky trio to find out why they came to start this strange hobby.


When I knocked on the deer of the museum, I was expecting to be greeted either by a Dalek or some person with a sink plunger stuck to their forehead.

And when you see what the three enthusiasts have been collecting over seven years you'd expect them to be a little — well, nerdy.

But no — they are probably the most ordinary bunch of people you am ever likely to meet. Simon. Sarah and Matt are adamant that they're not fanatics of Dr Who.

But when they show you the Dr Who merchandise they've collected over the seven years — you may begin to suspect it.

Among the TV stuff, they also have Dr Who sweet wrappers. some even with the original sweets inside. and empty sweet boxes, which they pointed out were quite rare.

Included is a huge display of costumes, varying from Doctor's companions to evil characters. some of which am truly fantastic.

They also have a vast amount of props, monsters' heads and two Daleks. one of which they reproduced themselves.

Having said that, Simon, 30, Sarah, 27, and Matt, 25, came to start this bizarre collection rather by accident than a conscious decision.

Seven years ago, the trio fell upon a short article in the Daily Express saying the BBC was holding an auction of props and costumes of old TV programmes.

Out of curiosity the three trundled up to London just to see what was on offer.

Not knowing what they were letting themselves in for, Simon, Sarah and Matt clubbed together and bid for a rail of 15 costumes which was sold to them at a hammer price of £250.

When they got home they went through the costumes and found stuff belonging to programmes from Red Dwarf and Blake Seven as well as Dr Who.

From that moment onwards the three decided to start collecting Dr Who memorabilia.

And now that a cult following of the classic time-travelling series is escalating, any self-respecting Dr Who fan would be amazed by the trio's luck.

Simon said "We realty just started collecting out of nostalgia. We had watched the programme when we were kids."

Matt added, "I remember hiding behind the sofa when it was on because I was scared."

The only thing their vast collection doesn't have and what they desperately want is the mechanical pet of Dr Who, K9.

But, admirably. they do have a piece of the famous Tardis, the old blue Police Box which was sad by the good doctor to get from one dimension to another.

A Vogon's head, proudly displayed in a glass cabinet, is one of their most recent acquisitions.

Sadly, the terrifying monster looks a little meek without his glowing horns. which over the years went missing.

But with the money from their last exhibition the threesome hope to give him some new ones.

Out of the money from entrance charges, 25 per cent goes to the British Heart Foundation. 25 per cent goes to Simon's collection of pianos, also exhibited at the museum. and the remainder goes to improving the Dr Who displays.

Simon lives in the Oaklands Park House with his parents and opens it up two or three times a year to the public.

He said that council regulations won't allow him to open the house more often.

However, if you think living in the same place as a Dr Who museum sounds a little strange, just think of Simon's parents. They have to walk through the eerie museum in the middle of the night when they want a glass of water or to go to the toilet.

But he claims this doesn't bother them and they don't really object to having complete strangers traipsing through their home every so often.

Simon said, They hart come home from holiday to find we've knocked a wall down to extend a part of the museum, which doesn't go down well with them.

"But they don't mind — it gives us all an excuse to keep the house tidy."


Captions:

Simon with as Androzani (Android Caves of Androzani) in ohich Peter Davidson last appeared. Masque of Mandragora and an Exxilon's head (Death to the Daleks).

Matt with a cyberman (1988)

Sarah with two time lords — on the left is Borusa (Ark of Infinity — 1983) and on the right is The Inquisitor, who was played by Linda Bellingham, the famous mum in the Oxo adverts (The Trial of a Time Lord — 1986.)

Vanir (Terminus, 1983)

Disclaimer: These citations are created on-the-fly using primitive parsing techniques. You should double-check all citations. Send feedback to whovian@cuttingsarchive.org

  • APA 6th ed.: Fryer, Jennifer (1997-04-03). Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor?. The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser p. 13.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Fryer, Jennifer. "Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor?." The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser [add city] 1997-04-03, 13. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Fryer, Jennifer. "Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor?." The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser, edition, sec., 1997-04-03
  • Turabian: Fryer, Jennifer. "Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor?." The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser, 1997-04-03, section, 13 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor? | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Just_Who_do_you_think_they_are_kidding,_Doctor%3F | work=The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser | pages=13 | date=1997-04-03 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=19 April 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Just Who do you think they are kidding, Doctor? | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Just_Who_do_you_think_they_are_kidding,_Doctor%3F | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=19 April 2024}}</ref>