For many years now, there hasn’t been a Doctor Who exhibition in Blackpool, yet many fans still return to the site of the original exhibition, as if on a sacred pilgrimage to once more reconnect with the past, and the special times that were had.
Yet the exhibition is just a ghost.
The side streets of the Golden Mile may look somewhat less than golden these days, and in need of a little TLC. Stepping off Chapel Street, through the entrance to the building in the footprint of what once would have been the TARDIS, you see a tatty staircase in a bargain shoe shop. But it is the same staircase, and it still leads down there – to what was once the entrance into the ever-changing subterranean world of Doctor Who. Today, those basement doors are closed to the public. You know the interior has been refitted, flooded, repaired and changed many times in the last 36 years. Despite all this, the original handrails still stand. The same ones that millions of eager fans’ hands clutched as they went down those stairs. The same stairs you and I, and many stars – and future stars – of the show walked down. The once light-studded angular overhead ceiling façade is still there too, and the odd imprint of a hexagon on the wall above still remains. All these little things have stood the test of time and the ghost of the exhibition lives on in them.
Gaining access into that basement area today, would undoubtedly create mixed feelings. You’d be going in with the knowledge of everything that passed through those walls – the Shoe Cellar staff are probably completely oblivious to this hidden electricity in the air down there. We’d pass our younger selves lost in awe and wonder – and that of every single contributor to the books. Whilst navigating around boxes of stock or shoe racks, you’d be looking up at the ceiling, for evidence of those criss-cross beams and any other joists or fittings that may have once been there, holding the exhibition together. Just like stepping into a room reputed to be haunted, the atmosphere would be charged with ghosts of exhibits past, and there would no doubt be a very strange feeling of points in time attempting to connect, before walking up the stairs to exit via the rear one more time.
Through working on two extensive books we learned so much about the exhibitions. In turn, we learned a lot beyond the exhibitions – behind every unique recollection was a personal story; sometimes joyful, sometimes tragic, but all channelled through a mutual love of Doctor Who.
It’s just a TV show and it’s just a building. But to us, it has always been so much more. The success of Blackpool Remembered and the sheer amount of interest and contributions submitted to both books is testament to this mutual appreciation, and the memories of a lucky few generations who got to experience it first-hand.
Our books are for you, and we could have only done them with you.
Blackpool Revisited will be available to download only on this website, from Saturday 28th August 2021.
Months of writing, researching, interviewing, discussing, brainstorming and absolute enjoyment come to a close as it is now just a matter of hours before we unleash the beast that is Blackpool Revisited to the world…
If you’re after a quick read while waiting impatiently for Blackpool Revisited, Alex Storer has recently updated his 2011 Doctor Who recollection, Who, Where & When. The revised edition features new cover art and four additional pages. Head over to Sevenzero.net to download for free (where you’ll also find details of Steve Cambden’s excellent books, The Doctor’s Affect and The Doctor’s Effects).
We are counting down the days until the release of Blackpool Revisited. The book is now over 600(!) pages long and delves into the deepest, darkest depths of Doctor Who’s association with Blackpool and many other related areas. Here is a taste of what to expect.
We are also delighted to announce the book now features an exclusive foreword by Lorne Martin, the man responsible for bringing the original Doctor Who exhibitions to life.
Blackpool Revisited will be available only on this website, to download for FREE at 10am on Saturday 28th August!
We are delighted to announce the release of Blackpool Revisited on Saturday 28th August (on the anniversary of Blackpool Remembered!). Again, the publication will be a free PDF download. Here’s a little taste of what’s in store for you…
Our artist in residence, Alex Storer, has produced prints of his recent Doctor Who illustrations, and these are now available as a limited edition set. Each individually numbered pack contains six A5 prints of Alex’s vibrant illustrations, featuring the Daleks, Davros, Cybermen, Sontarans and K9 – slightly alternative versions of some of these pieces were originally commissioned for Blackpool Remembered.
Numbers are limited, so if you enjoyed the illustrations in the book, and would like to own a set, email Alex for details: alex [at] thelightdream.net
We are pleased to reveal the name and cover of our follow-up publication, Blackpool Revisited, which will be released in 2021.
Work is now well under way, writing, researching and collating content and contributors. We look forward to further memories about the original Blackpool exhibition, but this time, we’ll also be taking a detailed look at the second Blackpool exhibition, David Boyle’s Doctor Who Museum, and no doubt exploring various connections and offshoots along the way!
Stay tuned for updates and calls for contributions over on our Twitter account: @Blackpool7485
Meanwhile, here is the cover art, again by Alex Storer plus a little video teaser 🙂
Following additional information and corrections from our lovely readers, Blackpool Remembered has been revised and updated. Various typos or grammatical errors have been fixed, but the main update concerns the year-by-year exhibition floor plans.
This part of the book was always going to be a work in progress, but with the help of Philip Brennan in particular, all the plans have been dissected, scrutinised and updated – they now feature even more detail, and we believe are now as accurate as possible (in the absence of actually getting in a TARDIS and going back to check every year in person!). You’ll notice we’ve also given the front cover a little tweak to distinguish it from the previous version.
Artist and book contributor Alex Storer has reflected on his work for Blackpool Remembered over in a special post on his website. Alex details some of his process for the exclusive illustrations, but also reflects on his childhood obsession with drawing Doctor Who and even being featured in DWM!
The August Bank Holiday weekend was a time when the Collier family would traditionally be making their way up to Blackpool – which for young John, meant it would soon be time to descend those famous stairs once again, to see the year’s new exhibits at the Doctor Who exhibition, hidden beneath the surface of Blackpool’s Golden Mile.
It is now time to re-live those moments, as John’s long-time ambition to compile an expansive book about the Blackpool Doctor Who exhibition has finally come to fruition.
Enter the TARDISand defy the Daleks once again, as Blackpool Remembered is now available! It is most certainly bigger on the inside – you will find over 400 pages of memories, photographs, interviews, floor plans, nostalgia, memorabilia, artwork and much more. For those fans who visited, this is the opportunity to go back in time, and for the generations of fans who missed it, your visit starts here!
Blackpool Remembered editor John Collier and illustrator/right-hand-man Alex Storer recently caught up with the excellent Type•40 podcast to talk all things Blackpool. The end result is over an hour’s worth of exhibition nostalgia and indulgence, as we go behind the scenes of this epic project.
In the run-up to the release of the Blackpool Remembered, John Collier and illustrator Alex Storer sat down at a very safe distance with Geeky Scifi TV to discuss the project and how it all came about…
Welcome to our website! With only a week to go until Blackpool Remembered is available for download, we thought it was a good time to get the site online – do check back for more content, but in the meantime, why not head over to the Sights & Sounds page, where there are a few things to explore.
This project has been in the mind of its creator, John Collier for thirty-five years. At long last, thanks to the passion and generosity of all the contributors, John’s dream of a comprehensive exhibition book has become a reality!