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The 1983 story Arc of Infinity featured extensive foreign location filming in Amsterdam. We take a guided tour that folloes in the foot step of the Fifth Doctor...
A classic view of Amsterdam, showing the Oudeschans canal and the sixteenth-century Montelbaanstoren clock tower.

As part of the celebrations for the series’ 20th anniversary in 1983, producer John Nathan-Turner decided to return to the scenario of the tenth anniversary story The Three Doctors (1972-73) and stage a second attempt by vengeful Time Lord engineer Omega to escape from his anti-matter prison. In Arc of Infinity (1983), Omega’s scheme would involve using the Doctor’s biodata to create a new body for himself, culminating in a hectic chase through the streets of Amsterdam.

Keen to replicate the success of the 1979 location filming in Paris for City of Death, Nathan-Turner and his production manager Ralph Wilton arranged a five-day shoot in the Netherlands capital from 3 to 7 May 1982. Under the direction of Ron Jones, cameraman Fintan Sheehan and his assistant Bill Broomfield filmed scenes involving

Peter Davison (as the Doctor and his Omega double), Janet Fielding (Tegan Jovanka), Sarah Sutton (Nyssa), Alastair Cumming (Colin Frazer), Andrew Boxer (Robin Stuart) and Ian Collier (Omega) at 18 different sites in the city.

A modern-day shot of the station.

Keen film location tourists can easily visit all 18 sites in a single day by embarking on a leisurely walking tour, armed with a decent street map of central Amsterdam and a GVB

(Gemeentelijk Vervoerbedrijf ) day ticket, which gives unlimited access to all GVB trams. Tickets can be purchased at Amsterdam Centraal Station and, conveniently, this is also where the tour begins.

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About Doctor Who Magazine

In its early days, Doctor Who was recorded on cumbersome cameras tethered to claustrophobic and often inadequate studios. The show rarely escaped these confines in the 1960s, but as technology improved, producers and directors became more adventurous. Location shooting has helped to create some of the most memorable episodes in the series’ long history. In this unique publication, new features, exclusive interviews and rare images tell the story of those episodes and the people who made them happen.