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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Doctor Who Exhibition to close

Not exactly comics-related but as some visitors to this blog are fans of Doctor Who I thought this might be of interest. The Doctor Who Exhibition which has held a prominent position on Blackpool's Golden Mile for five years is to close next month on November 8th.

Some of the items from the museum will be transferred to other Doctor Who Exhibitions around the UK. The museum features a range of props, monsters and costumes from the history of the 45 year old tv series.

I visited the exhibition last summer and I have to say I was somewhat disappointed that only props from the "classic" pre-Christopher Eccleston series seemed to be featured, and the items seemed somewhat shabby. However, the props and costumes were designed for the tv screen of course and never intended to be convincing up close. It was still interesting to view such items, including the TARDIS console and a Mechanoid from the 1965 serial The Chase which actually looked better constructed than some of the 1980s props.

Fronting the museum is a shop selling a good range of modern Doctor Who merchandise along with numerous back issues of Doctor Who Magazine and recent issues of Doctor Who Adventures. (There you go; there is a comics connection to this blog entry. ;-))

The exhibition (which is on Blackpool seafront, practically opposite the Central Pier) will be open every day from 10.30am to 8.00pm until November 8th, when it closes its doors for the last time.

This isn't the first Doctor Who Exhibition that has appeared (and disappeared) in Blackpool. A similar one, not far from the current venue, opened in 1974 and ran for 11 years. The current one will certainly leave a void. Blaring the various Doctor Who themes out from its key position on the promenade it presumably attracted lots of passing trade from Blackpool's millions of tourists, but according to this report the decision was made by the BBC:

Click on the photographs to see them full size.

The good news for Whovians is that the exhibitions in Cardiff, Glasgow, Lands End, and Coventry will continue. For more information on the Doctor Who Exhibitions around the UK visit this website:


Mark H Wilkinson said...

I visited the new exhibition three years on a run -- there was very little change in the displays from year to year and it was clear the pick of the new series stuff was going to exhibitions elsewhere (a far cry from the original Blackpool exhibition, which had a major revamp each season). I can imagine it wouldn't encourage repeat visits, especially from youngsters schooled in the Tennant era.

Lew Stringer said...

Yeah, it probably doesn't help that the prom opposite is a building site at present due to the new sea wall construction. I heard from locals that trade has dropped off everywhere.

Mark H Wilkinson said...

Turns out that it's down to the BBC:

"The decision to close down the Doctor Who exhibition has nothing to do with Blackpool itself. We have been very happy with the running of the museum, but we have other plans for the collection."

Lew Stringer said...

Many thanks for that Mark. I'll add that info to the blog for clarification.

The Gamester said...

Was that the original Mechanoid prop? Would be interesting to know!

Lew Stringer said...

I assume so, unless anyone out there knows differently?

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