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BBC graphic designer Sid Sutton took viewers on a journey through space when he created a new set of opening and closing titles for Doctor Who in 1980.

When John Nathan-Turner took over as producer”, explains Sid Sutton, “he wanted a complete change on Doctor Who. But that often happened with someone new. The number of times they had me redesign the screen symbols for BBC1 and BBC2 because a new Controller came in!”

Sid enjoyed a varied career as a graphic designer. After studying at Harrow School of Art, in 1961 he took a job at Iris Productions in Teddington, printing up photographs and captions for White Tide washing powder commercials. “It only took half a day a week to do that”, he says, “so the rest of the time I was mucking in with the other designers, working on title sequences and bits of programme content. It was great.

“Then I heard through the grapevine about a job at the BBC. I started in 1962 in the Presentation Department, doing trailers and things. The chief way of trailing programmes back then was to put a 12” by 9” caption card up on the screen, with a design and a bit of type giving the information. It was getting paid to do the sort of thing I’d done at art school!”

Tumbleweed Connection, Elton John’s third album, was released in 1970.
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About Doctor Who Magazine

“Space: the final frontier. Final, because it wants to kill us...” The TARDIS doesn’t just travel through time – stories set in space have been an essential part of Doctor Who for six decades. The inhospitable void between the stars has served as the backdrop to epic space operas and nerve-racking thrillers, while harbouring some of the most dangerous adversaries the Doctor has ever encountered. This lavish publication navigates a revealing course through the space lanes of Doctor Who, with exclusive interviews, rare images, and guides to some of the most memorable episodes.