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April 17th, 2024 6 comments

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The Doctor Who Production Diary The Hartnell Years

Available to order from and

Written by David Brunt.

In the first of a new series of books, noted Doctor Who historian David Brunt presents the most detailed and comprehensive day-by-day record ever published of the show’s production during the years 1963-1966 when William Hartnell played the Doctor.

Drawing on many years of research and an exhaustive study of BBC archive documentation – including files not previously accessed by any other Doctor Who author – the book includes a wealth of newly-discovered information and explodes some long-standing myths.

Some things you will discover in this book:

  • Which future Doctor Who scriptwriter was the first person approached to write for the series?
  • How major was the overhaul to the BBC Drama Department under Sydney Newman in 1963, and who first suggested the idea before he even joined the BBC?
  • How did the series manage to get made, when several people inside the BBC tried to get it cancelled before it even went into production?
  • How many people turned down the offer of becoming the series’ producer before Verity Lambert was hired?
  • How long before he appeared as Steven Taylor was Peter Purves contracted for the role?
  • Was Vicki going to appear in ‘The Daleks’ Master Plan’?
  • Was Katarina originally going to survive that same story?
  • When was Vicki planned to be burned as a witch?
  • Was Anne Chaplet going to appear in ‘The Celestial Toymaker’?
  • On what date was it first decided to write out William Hartnell as the Doctor?
  • Exactly when was Patrick Troughton contracted to replace him?

And much more …

You think you know the background and history of the development of the show and the era of the First Doctor? Think again …

Categorised under: Books, Reference books



  • Bill Silver

    April 20th, 2024 - 1:38pm

    Definitely excited about this and will, no doubt, be waiting eagerly for volume 2, The Troughton era. A definitive history yet to be published on the years 66 to 69,I believe. Look forward to that.

  • David McCallum

    April 19th, 2024 - 1:45pm

    I’m very much looking forward to this. David Brunt has always meticulously researched his publications and this should be the definitive work on this period of the show.

  • Harold

    April 17th, 2024 - 8:34pm

    I like books that explore the production of early Who. 600+ pages. Will be getting this for sure but it would have been so much better if it was hardcover.

    • Hewy

      April 18th, 2024 - 6:41am

      Or as an ebook

    • David

      April 18th, 2024 - 11:26am

      It will be available as an ebook. Kindls, Kobo and Nook formats.

  • Cully’s Pal

    April 17th, 2024 - 5:55pm

    Looks extremely interesting


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