Showing posts with label Aldeburgh. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Aldeburgh. Show all posts

06 October 2007

Dalek Invasion of Suffolk

Back in the mid-1970s this giant Dalek was a familiar sight in Aldeburgh, Suffolk where it trundled up and down the Saxmundham Road and made a guest appearance at the Aldeburgh Cinema for the annual town carnival. It also made forays out into the High Street to advertise the film 'Peter Pan'.

The Dalek in question was built in 1976 using plans published by the BBC in a Radio Times Dr Who Special, and using materials and components that the BBC workshops used to create their own Dalek versions - except that this one ended up rather bigger, standing a good 6 feet high!

The Dalek made its debut public appearance on the steps of the Royal Albert Hall in South Kensington just as the opening night of the Proms was ending and caused quite a stir among the concert goers as they streamed down the steps into Prince Consort Road.

This Dalek's reputation for getting into trouble started off when it was trundling along Oxford Street and stopped temporarily outside Debenham's. The commissionaire was alarmed at the huge crowd gathering around it and called the police. Minutes later a 'Black Maria' screamed to a halt alongside and what seemed like an army of uniformed officers piled out of the back and surrounded the Dalek. They then remonstrated with the Dalek that it was causing an obstruction and attempted to arrest it, much to the amusement of the assembled crowd.

However, it was the Dalek's misfortune to be solen overnight from its temporary home at Imperial College that brought it to the attention of millions when it's plight was featured on the BBC television programme 'Blue Peter', the ITV crime reporting programme 'Police Five' and a sprinkling of radio programmes and newspaper articles.