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Tributes to the Doctor Who luminaries who passed away between December 2015 and November 2016.

late 2015

Alan Mason

As well as playing Corporal Nutting in the UNIT story Doctor Who and the Silurians (1970), Alan Mason appeared in such London stage productions as Settled Out of Court (Strand Theatre 1960) and Rockets in Ursa Major (Mermaid Theatre 1962), also popping up in such 1960s TV shows as Scotland Yard, The Avengers, Please Sir! and Strange Report. Later appearances included The Innes Book of Records, Big Deal, Albion Market, Inspector Morse: The Wench is Dead and Casualty. He died at an undisclosed age in the latter part of 2015.

6 December 2015

Nicholas Smith

Among Nicholas Smith’s first television roles was the rebellious mine slave, Wells, in three episodes of The Dalek Invasion of Earth (1964), complete with a West Country accent of his own devising. Born in Banstead in March 1934, his theatre career ranged from Broadway (as ‘ballad singer’ in Portrait of a Queen, 1968) to a late-1980s stint with the Royal Shakespeare Company. His many TV credits included The Frost Report, The Avengers, Up Pompeii, Ace of Wands, Z Cars, Martin Chuzzlewit and Last of the Summer Wine, though it’s for his perplexed Mr Rumbold in the evergreen BBC sitcom Are You Being Served? (1972-85) that he’ll be best remembered. His last screen role, in 2010, was Professor Quakermass (sic) in the CBBC series M.I. High.

January 2016

Frances Pidgeon

Hailing from Epsom, actress, dancer and choreographer Frances Pidgeon was born in May 1931 and made her first stage appearances soon after the war. In the West End she featured in such musicals as Love from Judy (Saville Theatre 1952, subsequently televised by the BBC), Can-Can (Coliseum 1954), Grab Me a Gondola (Lyric Theatre 1956) and The Crooked Mile (Cambridge Theatre 1959), while on TV she appeared in Three of a Kind, Within These Walls, Quiller and Jubilee. There were also several roles for her director husband Lennie Mayne, with whom she’d danced in such shows as Can-Can. Among these were episodes of Doomwatch, Softly Softly: Taskforce, The Brothers and, in Doctor Who, an uncredited handmaiden to Nina Thomas’ Queen Thalira in The Monster of Peladon (1974) and Miss Jackson, assistant to Glyn Houston’s Professor Watson in The Hand of Fear (1976).

News of the following three deaths reached us too late for inclusion in the last Yearbook.

September 2015

Michael Percival

Michael Percival, whose last screen engagement was as the inspector in the 2010 story The Vampires of Venice, was best known for his engaging performance as geography teacher Tony Mitchell in numerous episodes of Grange Hill, starting with the very first instalment in February 1978. His other TV credits included The Lovers, Give Us a Break, ’Allo ’Allo, Lovejoy, Boon and My Uncle Silas, plus recurring roles in The Piglet Files, The House of Elliott and The Sculptress. Feature films included a three-picture association with John Cleese in Clockwise, A Fish Called Wanda and Fierce Creatures; in the second of these he played a barrister named Percival.

26 October 2015

Terence Denville

Born into a theatrical family in Newcastle in 1930, Terence Denville enjoyed many years in repertory theatre as well as appearing in such TV shows as No Hiding Place, Hadleigh, Curry & Chips, Callan, Lytton’s Diary, Love Soup and (his last credit, in 2010) Miranda. In Doctor Who, between 1967 and 1974 he had various unbilled roles as Autons, Ice Warriors and UNIT soldiers, as well as being one of the credited Cybermen in The Invasion (1968). Having joined the National Front in 1970, he stood for Parliament, as Terry Denville-Faulkner, in 1976, 1979 and 1983 – unsuccessfully in each case.

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About Doctor Who Magazine

On the 50th anniversary of The Power of the Daleks, Doctor Who looked back as well as forwards. While an animated reconstruction of the Second Doctor’s début was being prepared, work began on new episodes to be broadcast in 2017. Inside this issue, you’ll find exclusive interviews with some of the people behind the next series and the recent spin-off Class, the story behind the acclaimed exhibition of Target Books artwork and a ringside seat at the Power of the Daleks launch event. This is the essential guide to the worlds of Doctor Who.