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21st Century TARDIS Prop History

Started by willbrooks1989, Jul 02, 2017, 11:03 am

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Jul 02, 2017, 11:03 am Last Edit: Mar 02, 2018, 10:03 pm by Scarfwearer

As some of you no doubt know, I've spent the last few months looking into the TARDIS props used in the production of 21st century Doctor Who. While there's so much fantastic information out there about the classic series props, I kept finding a jumble of information when it came to the history of about the new ones. Facts that seemed to contradict each other, and which often fell apart when new sources came to light.

To that end, I've gone through thousands of high-resolution images (I've been lucky that my job has enabled me to amass a fair collection of never-before-published shots), watched back through the episodes, checked behind-the-scenes material like Doctor Who Confidential, Totally Doctor Who, and video diaries made by the cast, and where possible I've confirmed things with people involved in the production of the programme here in Cardiff since 2004.

With that said, I'm pleased to say that I've written everything up as a series of articles on their own blog, which you'll find at www.medium.com/tardis-history.

I'd been contemplating copying all the information over here to the forum, but for now thought you might be interested to see it all in situ with images, quotes, and links etc set up the way I'd had in mind!

Hope people find it interesting - I've really enjoyed trying to piece it all together, and to solve the puzzles that kept coming up while trying to make sense of it all!


Angelus Lupus

Great read! I'm sure it would be a welcome addition to the knowledge base here.
I don't want to offend, but can I point out one very minor typo? In the section about Tardis G (the one with the Clara graffiti) After the bit about the Experience being asked to return it, you end with "It was ultimately agreed that TARDIS F would remain in the Doctor Who Experience in the graffiti'd condition". Confused me for a second, until I realised that was meant to be G, but otherwise a lot of good info that was surprisingly easy to get my head round. Thank you.
A mixed-up non-conformist, trying to fit in.


Ooh, good spot, Angelus Lupus! I've amended that now. No matter how many times I read over it all, I think I'd gone a bit mad by then!

Thank you for the kind words, glad you enjoyed!


Angelus Lupus

Jul 02, 2017, 10:56 pm #3 Last Edit: Jul 03, 2017, 12:28 am by Angelus Lupus
No worries, I think everyone has the "I can't believe I missed that mistake" moment at some point... I know I have plenty of times! And it certainly was a fascinating read. If you were going to expand it in a future update, the only thing I can think to add (and this is only because we've been spoiled by the painstaking minutiae of detail Tony Farrell has given us in his researches) would be close-up pictures of the 'identifying marks' you've used to distinguish between props/doors. But that's a relatively minor thing.

Unless, of course, 2018 brings not only a new showrunner and a new Doctor, but a new Tardis, too!  ;D

Edit: Just going through your images again, and switching back-and-forth though the comparison of the three Pull To Open signs really shows how, not just the layout, but the 2(3?) fonts have changed subtly each time. (most noticeable on the serif 'S, P, F and R (the middle and tail of the latter particularly)' and the sans-serif 'M, A, O, P, and &' and the change from rounded terminals to square for the latest version.
A mixed-up non-conformist, trying to fit in.

Sofia Fox

I found about this just now. Great job, now I can cleanup my knowledge of the NSTs. And make some more of them in Roblox...it makes it all the better.  ;D
Sofia, the infrequent builder and forumer.


Merry Christmas, TARDIS Builders! I hope you've all had a great festive period, and enjoyed Twice Upon a Time!

Pleased to say my article covering the history of the modern props has been updated, to cover the special, with lots of info about the props used for both Doctors!

I've also added in a new section to the Matt Smith era, covering the creation of the police box for An Adventure in Space and Time, with some fab new photos of that box under construction.

You can read the updates over at medium.com/TARDIS-history

Huge thanks to Tony Farrell, Clayton Hickman, and Kenny Smith for their help with the new updates!

Wishing you all the best for 2018!



Oh... we're gonna have to leave the safeness of the forum about the history/building of police boxes, to go to another site that covers the hosting/building of police boxes...


Dec 10, 2018, 09:28 am #7 Last Edit: Dec 10, 2018, 09:28 am by willbrooks1989
Ten new episodes, two new 'hero' props, one big update to my TARDIS History blog!

Series Eleven is now covered at Medium.com/TARDIS-History




Thanks for being so prompt adding the latest H & I props. Any clues or info on their construction?