Programme Index

Discover 10,921,883 listings and 280,262 playable programmes from the BBC

Dr. Who: An Unearthly Child

on BBC Television

by Anthony Coburn
An adventure in space and time
With William Hartnell as Dr. Who, William Russell as Ian Chesterton, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara Wright, Carole Ann Ford as Susan Foreman
See page 7

[Photo caption] Dr. Who
In this series of adventures in space and time the title-role will be played by William Hartnell

[Article] Dr. Who? That is just the point. Nobody knows precisely who he is, this mysterious exile from another world and a distant future whose adventures begin today. But this much is known: he has a ship in which he can travel through space and time - although, owing to a defect in its instruments he can never be sure where and when his 'landings' may take place. And he has a grand-daughter Susan, a strange amalgam of teenage normality and uncanny intelligence.

Playing the Doctor is the well-known film actor, William Hartnell, who has not appeared before on BBC-tv.

Each adventure in the series will cover several weekly episodes, and the first is by the Australian author Anthony Coburn. It begins by telling how the Doctor finds himself visiting the Britain of today: Susan (played by Carole Ann Ford) has become a pupil at an ordinary British school, where her incredible breadth of knowledge has whetted the curiosity of two of her teachers. These are the history teacher Barbara Wright (Jacqueline Hill), and the science master Ian Chesterton (William Russell), and their curiosity leads them to become inextricably involved in the Doctor's strange travels.

Because of the imperfections in the ship's navigation aids, the four travellers are liable in subsequent stories to find themselves absolutely anywhere in time - past, present, or future. They may visit a distant galaxy where civilisation has been devastated by the blast of a neutron bomb or they may find themselves journeying to far Cathay in the caravan of Marco Polo. The whole cosmos in fact is their oyster


Anthony Coburn
Title Music:
Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Incidental Music:
Norman Kay
Story Editor:
David Whitaker
Peter Brachacki
Associate Producer:
Mervyn Pinfield
Verity Lambert
Waris Hussein
Dr. Who:
William Hartnell
Ian Chesterton:
William Russell
Barbara Wright:
Jacqueline Hill
Susan Foreman:
Carole Ann Ford

BBC Television

Appears in

Suggest an Edit

We are trying to reflect the information printed in the Radio Times magazine.

  • Press the 'Suggest an Edit' button
  • Type in any changes to the title, synopsis or contributor information using the Radio Times Style Guide for reference.
  • Click the Submit Edits button.
    Your changes will be sent for verification and if accepted, will appear in due course More