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Once a seemingly unchanging element of the series’ mythology, the TARDIS interior now transforms with each new Doctor.
The Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) and Ace (Sophie Aldred) in a CG reconstruction of the TARDIS control room designed by artist Lee Sullivan for the DWM comic strip in the 1990s.
The crystal structure seen in the final episode of Enlightenment (1983) inspired the central column of the new TARDIS console designed by Mike Kelt.
The Doctor (Peter Davison) at the controls of the redesigned TARDIS console in Warriors of the Deep (1984).

During its early years, the biggest influence on how the TARDIS looked each week was how much screen time it had. Short scenes in the ship required minimal effort, with just a couple of walls needing to go up.

However, special occasions, like the departure of Patrick Troughton in The War Games (1969) or his subsequent return with William Hartnell in The Three Doctors (1972-73), resulted in time and money being spent on returning the ship to the way it was originally designed by Peter Brachacki in 1963.

Although there seemed to be an injection of new design elements in The Invisible Enemy (1977), this was in fact judicious recycling of existing material. The apparently new, grooved pillars and ‘carved’ roundel design had actually been made for the ‘wooden’ control room the previous year, while the updated white set also recycled the scanner cabinet and old doors.

By 1982 these walls had accumulated five years of damage, and the console was twice as old. Increasingly frustrated with wasting time on repairs, visual effects designer Mike Kelt petitioned producer John Nathan-Turner to approve the funds for a whole new TARDIS interior. The production team was looking ahead to the planned anniversary special, The Five Doctors (1983), so Nathan-Turner agreed and had Kelt draw up a replacement set for the occasion. The brief was to create a console prop that was the same size and shape as the original, with all the key elements still present. Kelt was, however, permitted to update the layout of the panels, and additional embellishments were up to him.

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About Doctor Who Magazine

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH MANDIP GILL IN THE LATEST ISSUE OF DWM! Doctor Who Magazine 532 also includes: • An in-depth look at Series 11's ratings • Previews of the final four episodes of Series 11 • DWM attends the unveiling of the waxwork Jodie Whittaker at Madame Tussauds in Blackpool • The second part in a series of features looking at the evolution of the TARDIS • Tips on how to cosplay the members of Team TARDIS from Doctor Who's costume designer Ray Holman • Bernard Cribbins answers questions from our TARDIS tin • Key members of Doctor Who's current production team describe their roles • Part Two of The Warmonger, a brand-new comic strip adventure featuring the Thirteenth Doctor and her friends • The Time Team watches the Thirteenth Doctor's first episodes • An interview with David Solomons, author of The Secret in Vault 13 • DWM's reviews of Rosa, Arachnids in the UK and The Tsuranga Conundrum • A preview of the Season 19 Blu-ray, audio reviews, news, The Blogs of Doom, prize-winning competitions and much, much more!