Pertwee versus Baker TARDIS Key.

Having had a lot of traffic directed to this site over the years via Google and other search engines from people wanting to know about the design of the classic Pertwee/Baker TARDIS door key, and with a sudden upsurge in interest in this particular topic of late, I sort of half suggested in my last blog entry (Cor blimey, it’s COLD) that maybe I should do a write up on the subject.  Well, here it is and I hope that folk find it interesting.

There seems to be a lot of hyperbole surrounding this particular prop, as well as some disinformation being bandied around, for reasons known only to those who are doing it, so with luck, we’ll be able to put the myth to bed and bring out the facts.  There’s not much to say about it to be honest as it’s pretty straight forward.

The main issue is that Jon Pertwee’s key was supposedly a hand made, one off item that was then remade in a simplified manner that lacked certain details for when Tom Baker took over the role.  This is, to be brutally frank, utter nonsense and anyone who tells you otherwise does not know what they’re talking about.  Both keys were identical.  Yes I am aware that people have doubted me in the past when I’ve said this, so here below is a nice little picture montage to prove that I wasn’t speaking from whence the sun doesn’t shine… I’ve had to use public domain images to illustrate this as I’ve been banned from using other images that I have.  Typical really, but there you go.

They say that a picture speaks a thousand words, so this ought to prevent me from having to write yet another of my weighty tomes.  The bottom line is this; both keys were cast out of a mould (and both props show many signs of this) so therefore we can safely say without any doubt that Jon’s TARDIS door key was identical to Tom’s TARDIS door key.

The colour pictures are from an eBay auction dating back to the mid 2000’s when Jon Pertwee’s personal key was put up for sale by a fan who had bought it directly from the man himself.  I don’t know who this was and to be honest, for this blog entry, it doesn’t matter either.  The black and white images are both cropped from high resolution publicity images taken during two of Tom Baker’s early stories; “Genesis of the Daleks” and “Terror of the Zygons” respectively.  You can clearly see Tom’s costumes from those stories behind the key, in case you have any doubts.  So, what can we draw from this?  Quite simply, both props were identical – as I’ve now said three times.  Maybe I’m trying to really stress the point, either that or I’m so bunged up with the flu that I’m forgetting what I’ve already said and am just repeating myself.  It’s most likely the latter.  :)

In the late 1970s or early 1980s, Jon Pertwee loaned his personal screen used key to the president of the Jon Pertwee Fan Club, a chap named Stuart Money, so that duplicates could be made and offered exclusively to the members of this society.  The reproductions were cast in silver (or at least a silver alloy), rather than the dulled tones of the likes of pewter and such like.  Although a number of these are known to still exist, they very rarely ever surface, though one appears to have been included in the Doctor Who Experience exhibition in London.  Who that one belonged to, I have no idea.  Strangely though, those who own the copies tend to not want to talk about the piece, especially the detailing on the rear.  Well stuff that, feel free to look at it in all it’s glory!  Hmm, I’m sure I’ll get flak for this from disgruntled key owners.  It’s a chance that I’m willing to take.

And that is about it.  Told you that there wasn’t much to say about it.

If anyone wants to make a perfectly accurate replica and thinks of doing a run of casts, (it will not surprise me if I see them on eBay with the original rear detailing now included in the coming months) do think of me as I wouldn’t mind one myself – I’ve been meaning to do it myself for years, but I never quite got around to it.  Life always got in the way.

So long then and enjoy!

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~ by PurpleBlancmange on February 16, 2012.

63 Responses to “Pertwee versus Baker TARDIS Key.”

  1. Thanks for sharing that, Purple! If a run of these matieralizes that I can find I’ll let you know.

  2. I rather like that curved detail on the constellation-side, it gives it a bit of extra content to the design.

    I still prefer McCoy’s rarely-seen key (and thanks for that reveal post from last year), but it’s nice to see a detail post on the older TARDIS key.

  3. Hay I got the journal of impossible things prop and prop sonic screwdriver for $400

  4. Thanks for the info. Yeah you are right, a lot of interest of late about this item on RPF that has gradually been growing since the McCoy key was put up for auction last year & I posted a picture of the back after requsting it from the auctionhouse.

    I’m quite surprise at how different the back is to what had been previously thought, & like the McCoy, a slight dissapointment when you find out. I quite like the ‘dots only’ version of the Spirit of light & Trekker 800 models & repeat image of the font for the back on McCoy fan replicas, still that’s just me.

    I see in your blog you mention you had to use public domain pictures as the ones you have couldn’t be used, why is that by the way?

    Thanks once again for the info, as usual a fascinating read! Now all you need to put to rest is what model of pen torch was used as a prop for the 2nd Dr. Over to you… ;)

    • I’ve got a “traffic report” on the dashboard here and it tells me precisely what people have typed into Google to bring them here, I also get info on the whereabouts of links that people have also clicked to get here. Sometimes I use the popular search terms as a platform to help me decide on what I’ll write about. The keys (and the bloody Sonics) seem to be hugely popular.

      If you’ve found this entry useful, then great, but yes, sometimes what you find out is just a little bit deflating.

      Regarding the pictures that I can’t use, it’s very simple; I’ve been given hi-res images of different keys (and other things) over the years with the caveat of “Don’t show these to anyone” – I’m sure you’ve been in that boat. As a man of my word, I will always abide by any promise I make. Sometimes this results in me having to sit on information that I know people would love to see, read or know about, but my hands are tied. I’ve been bitched about many times for doing this when people get wind of something or have their suspicions, but what can I do? Yeah, it can make me hugely unpopular, but I’d rather stand by a promise than not.

      As for the second Doctor Sonic, I’m not going to get into any online discussion about Sonics as I’ve heard they get quite fruity and that’s just not my scene, I like a quiet life me. I’ve said in passing to folk who’ve asked, what brands I believe it could have been – I’ve been a casual flashlight/torch (and gadget) collector since the early 1980s and I have two that are very close, but the “modern” incarnation, so although the details are right, the colour and tip shape have slightly changed – but the bulb shape and position are perfect.

      Put it this way, I believe that the item in question was readily available at newsagents, places like Woolworths and anywhere that sold a particular famous brand of battery.

      Ooh, that was a very long reply.

      • Long yes, but informative as ever! Many thanks.

        Yep those Sonics always kickup some dust especially if CT comes up with new info, which flies against established myths.

  5. Always been a fan of TARDIS keys as you know. Ive been trying to track down a decent Pertwee and McCoy key for a while now but no such luck. I do have a rather nice TVM key which i picked up in a shop in Blackpool years ago. I believe it was an officially licenced key but i dont know who made it.

    As for these prop collectors who throw their toys out of their pram when anyone reveals certain details about a prop they own and they are ‘protective’ about, really annoys me.

    • They do get proprietorial over it all and don’t like it when folk like us talk about stuff, especially if it goes against the grain of what they think they know which then subsequently proves them to be wrong time and again. I mean, what is all this “oneupmanship” about anyway? Come on, grow up!

      I’ve never claimed to be a prop expert (far from it in fact), but I do like to share (when I can) information on stuff that I’ve experienced, witnessed, recorded or documented over the 20 plus years that I’ve been doing this kind of thing.

      If that means pissing on certain egomaniacle, self absorbed, self serving and self publicising uberfans’ parade, then so be it – it’s not my problem and I certainly have no ego to shatter in that regard as many people will atest… I just like to do what I do as a past time because I enjoy it and find the chase quite rewarding. At least I don’t play golf, now that is a waste of your time. ;)

      I’d love to see a photo of your collection, especially the key. I have a feeling that it may be a Stamp Centre one, rather than the TVM “Trekker” prop. Either way, you must have quite a lot of interesting stuff by now.

  6. Nice, been wondering about this for a while. One small thing I observed is that on the black and white photos, the cross part of the key (I don’t know any technical terms) seems to be curved downward, while on the rest of the pictures it looks straight. Is this a genuine difference or am I just seeing things?

    • You’re not seeing things, the “arms” are bent out of shape because they’re incredibly thin at that point. It’s just another aspect of wear and tear on a prop at the hands of his Lordship, Thomas of Baker

  7. Talking of keys (as we are). I read an interview with Russell T Davis in the Dr Who Magazine that there was a beautiful design for a new key for Series 1 but it was decided in the end, to go with an ordinary yale type key so all the kids could easily have their own key. Now I wonder if this decision was really down to budget? Either way do you happen to know what the design was as no concept pictures have yet been published.

    By the way Tony if you are looking for replicas of 3/4 keys have a look at Mooncrest models. He has the front spot on, painstakingly modelled from the pictures of the Pertwee prop. His 7th is very good too, even if a tad larger than the original, well worth a look I have given him details of all the latest news, so fingers crossed he may decided to work his magic again for these keys. He’s an excellent craftsman.

    • I’ve never seen any designs for a new key, despite that a lot of the early and unused drawings have been shown over the years. I do wonder just how far it got. Back in the days of series one, a wealth of images were given to various folk (digitally) that included concepts, designs and photographs and I have a copy of the disc, but the key’s not there. Interestingly, the Aztec Sonic is among these images, but not the one with the wide slider channel, just the fixed button.

      Although you were talking to Tony about Mooncrest, I used to talk to him years ago. If he wants another bash at the Baker key or the McCoy key, I can give him a helping hand with dims for both if he wants, plus I can tell him about the various details in exchange for a few copies of each.

  8. Hmm, shame about no pictures of New Series Key. Perhaps RTD embellished the story a bit to make a good story for the use of an ordinarry key, but he did praise the design.

    I sent an email to Gary last night & mentioned your blog & updated info for both keys. I’ll email him again with your offer, unless he knows already ‘cos he’s reading it ;) but as I said his Pertwee Key shape & front is spot on referencing the pictures of this prop via the web. Very different from the original Spirit of light version I have.

  9. Fair do’s.

    Once you have a face on image of both sides, recreating the key(s) is an absolute piece of wee wee. As I said above, I just never got around to doing it myself – apart from an unfinished plasticard tooling and Lord knows where that is.

    If Gary does use the pictures, he has to keep in mind that the Pertwee copy’s arms are somewhat mangled. The impression that I got was that it was a slight miscast and was tidied up, rather than waste it (and time) to pour more. Effectively, the arms are symetrical and clean. Tom’s casting looked very clean.

    • Great will pass that info on.

      Yeah he did model the arms as being a bit mangled & said he wasnt going to clean them up as he was going for that slightly worn look. Dunno how to post pictures here as would show you my copy. Hopefully he’ll go down the Baker route if he takles this prop again (finger crossed he does).

      Can’t help thinking now about a poss new series key that never was. I wonder what they had in mind if it was a possiblity at one point? I am thinking it could have had same type of pattern as seen on the watch & crackle somewhere to match the sonic. Ah well…

      • I’ve seen Gary’s keys before, they’re pretty good. The face is a little off, but not too much to worry about, though if he’s going to re-do it, I’d suggest to tackle that issue.

        The best way to show an image here is to give a link to a photobucket account (or similar) for people to click on. That said, I’m sure that someone once managed to post the actual image into their reply… maybe there is a way to do that in the usual manner.

        I did have Gary’s phone number and was going to call him about both keys a year or so ago, but after we last chatted, I lost the piece of paper with his number on it. Besides, I felt guilty about potentially telling him because I also pointed out a small mistake on his NSD eye too. Was only trying to be helpful, but it’s never nice pointing out mistakes. At the end of the day though, it can only make for a better product.

        If he wants a chat, he can always pass his number on to you and you can pass it on to me via this place, though obviously I won’t approve it for publishing to the blog… you know, privacy and all that.

  10. Gary at Mooncrest? yeah i know him, im friends with him on facebook :D very nice guy indeed. I was going through one of my boxes of stuff the other day and came across an unpainted model base with the seal of Rassilon on it. I couldnt for the life of me remember where i got it from, then i looked on the side and there was Gary’s name lol :). Couldnt remember ever buying it.

    I do like the look of his 7th Doctor key, always had a soft spot for that one.

    • Will do & will keep you posted re his No. I think he’s the man for the job, if he chooses to acccept. Hope you’re reading all this Gary :)

      • Okay. If all else fails, I could just do this myself, but right now, I don’t have the time, so it’d have to wait for a bit.

      • Except!? What the hell was I doing, as you all know that should be accept, if you can change the spelling for me Purple, please do. That’ll teach me for posting rather than working!

        No word from Gary as yet re my email..

      • Spelling corrected for you. :)

        Regarding Gary, I’m sure he’ll reply at some stage. There’s no hurry on something like this… the information isn’t going anywhere, it’s just sat in a massive pile info on hundreds of other props and wotnot.

  11. Had contact with Gary last night. He is now working on new keys & has been posting updates on facebook. I’m not a member, so I haven’t seen them, but here’s the link for the work so far…


    • I don’t do Facebook (or Twitter for that matter) but I took a gander at the link you’ve provided and saw the revised key.

      It looks pretty good, but there are a number of small issues with it, mainly the inset area in the middle of the front of the key – it’s over complicated, the original is far simpler. He may need to adjust the Gallifreyan seal a bit and the key chain tab looks a little on the short side, but this could just be down to his photo. I’d be interested to see a side on shot to see what he’s done with the key’s thickness and shape, it’s far chunkier than people tend to realise.

      Over all though, it’s a great start!

      If he wants any further tips, he can always get in touch, I’d be happy to give him a few pointers.

      • Yeah I don’t do facebook either. Couldn’t see the photos (howd you see them?)So joined under a different name. I will resist the rant on this subject… Anyway have let him know that you’ve lost his no & to post it here if poss. Will also ask about the side shot. I am hoping he’ll do 2 versions, as I dislike the flat back & dots & would like a version where the back & front are the same as in his previous model.

        Now for something completely different. I’ve always loved that spinny mini-mirror thingy prop in the 1st Peladon story. Do you know what was used to cobble it together?



      • I just clicked on the link you sent to FaceBook and the photos were right there, I’m not quite sure why you can’t see them – maybe it’s a browser issue.

        Like you, I won’t delve (or dwell) on why I believe that BookFace and Twatter are massively over-rated, pointless wastes of anyone’s time. A blog is bad enough, but at least you don’t have to know how many times a day I scratch my arse, have a bowel movement, make myself a dull sandwich or wonder why people keep leaving their rubbish on my lawn. You just get a general overview of things from me here every ten days or so…

        Funny you mention the Peladon thing, I was making some grabs from that episode about a month ago and saw the mirror thing. I did recognise it, but as it was of no interest, I just moved on. I’ll have another look for you. Speaking of making frame grabs, I took some of the scene in Genesis of the Daleks where the Doctor is emptying his pockets and blow me, I noticed that I have the exact same silver pen torch as he does – the one in that bundle of screwdriver, magnifying glass, yo-yo etc. So for decades I’ve had another of the Doctor’s continuity props and had never realised it!

        Made me smile. EverReady, in case you’re wondering. :)

  12. Ha! The Facebook link wouldn’t allow me to pass! Was trying to look via my mobile though.

    Thanks in advance for having a look at the mirror prop. I’m guseeing its gotta be a mirror from one of those car inspection tools (thing they made Romanas Sonic from) attached to a frame?

    Now very funny about your Genesis screen grabs, I was looking at a shot of that on a site about the Sonic Screwdriver’s appearence in each episode. I posted it to an internet friend who has been looking into the 2nd Dr prop as a joke, labelling it as a colour picture of Pats prop! Quite different of course. & he wasn’t fooled. Must have been Evereadys upgrade ;)

    • Put it this way, I bought the pen light years ago because at the time (late 80s maybe) I was convinced that it was the modern version, ie, their upgrade of the 1950s / 1960s version. Turns out, it was also used on the show.

      As for the mirror thing, I don’t think it’s been converted from anything, it is what it is. My daughter has a cheap, plastic toy version in pink and it looks just like it, repleate with rotating mirror… obviously a toy, but I’m convinced it’s based on a real item.

      With the Facebook thing, maybe it was just down to your phone. I wouldn’t know, I don’t own a mobile! Seriously.

      • Ah interesting re the penlight. I too bought one, but in the mid 70’s. I took the insides out, shoved a car arial in it, bent the tip to an ‘L’ shape undid the nipple bit & shoved a red washing-up liquid bottle top over top, screwed the nipple bit back in place & bingo! My 1st attempt at a Sonic Screwdriver! I still have part of another penlight that I had at the time, but this has a ripple effect on part of the tube which I was going to use for the Peladon prop, but never did get round to it as couldn’t work out the spinny mirror bit & how to attach it to the top of the torch!

        So could be like a kids toy? What’s your daughter got? Must get one in the pretence its for my daughter! ;) Now from what I remember he clipped that spinny bit via a sort of collar onto a pen torch type prop. I must have another look at it. I was a bit dissapointed when it didn’t make a reappearence on his next visit.

        Ha! You are only the 2nd person I know who doesn’t have a mobile. I envy you.

      • Hmm, sounds a bit like you may have Tom’s Genesis penlight – does it have a black cap at the end?

        I’ll have a hunt around for my daughter’s toy, I have a feeling that it has something to do with “Dora The Explorer”, but beyond that, I can’t really recall what it was. It’s just one of those cheap bits of tat that mysteriously turns up. Having said that, she does have two other toys from that franchise, one is a car, the other is a Dora torso that you can play “hairstyles” and “make-up” with. It’s possible it could be from the latter. Still no idea what it is actually meant to be though, in context to Dora.

        It just dawned on me. With the prop mirror, you can buy small mirrors (for what reason I do not know), but technically you can make them spin by loosening the tightening bolts on the side. Each face of the mirror has a different level of magnification.

        I’ll check out the DVD, it was the first peladon story, right? Also, which episode and roughly where? Just don’t want to have to wade through two hours of 1970s guff!

  13. Do you know it did! From what I remember it was slightly tapered & had groves from top to bottom for grip I think? Pats was Blue or Green wasn’t it? Alas, I believe its gone now, had it for ages & the one with the ripple effect had a black end too, but that part has gone, I chopped it in half for some reason so only have the rippled bit near the bulb end and a centimetre of smooth metal left.

    I thought the mirror had progs coming out either side (like one of those round bathroom mirrors that has normal glass one side, magnifying glass on the other) that was on a pivot that then closely curved around the mirror. The two end of the ‘prongs’ were then attached to a tube of metal that fitted over the tip of the torch allowing the light to still shine but I’m working from memory here & not seen the story for a while.

    Yes 1st Peladon story Ha! The prop is probably better in my head than real-life. Always the way eh?

    • Oh which episode? 3 I think, but it should be near the start of an episode as I think Aagador jumping out at the Dr was the cliffhanger.

      • Okay, once I’ve tracked down the DVD (having misplaced it since the capping session) I’ll have a look.

        By the way, god knows what this toy is, but the handle is hollow to allow light to flow down it to the mirror – you can even focus it by extending or retracting the handle. It is quite odd. I wonder if it’s meant to by some sort of survival tool. Makes me now think that this may have been what the Pertwee prop was as I can spin the mirror in the same way he did… Wonder if it’ll work on sending the kids to sleep at night. Faroon, faroon, faroon…

  14. … & now the new revised Pertwee mockups are up. Just the front view so far. Ooh this is quite exciting & all seems to be happening quite quickly too. I know he didn’t hang about with his 1st version of the Pertwee Key either :)

  15. Gary asked me to pass on his email address. [EDITED]

    He’s also posted up a few side shots of each Key so you can see the thickness of each.


    • Okay, I’ve dropped him an email with a few observations and he can take it from there. :)

      • That’s great with all this info it’d be great to get a a replica of this prop at last. One quetion I have, & I’m sure you’ve emailed him about it, was there a step down on the cross ‘arms section’ of Pertwees key or is it the same level & the line going down is just where the two sections fitted together?

        BTW couldn’t find that spinny mirror toy, prob look at Peladon this eve to see the prop again.

        Cheers for your help.

      • Yes, Gary has that right in his replica. If you think about the key as a back half and a front half, when the tool master was made, you will see that the over all shape of both the front and back weren’t quite the same profile (even if we forget about the curved step and the lack of “arms” on the rear side), so you get a very obvious misallignment in the finished casting.

        It’s just the nature of the hand made original tooling… any casting then made from the moulds will show this difference and up close it looks a bit, well, crappy.

        Thing is, the key was never intended to be seen up close.

        With the Peladon thing, I wonder if it’s actually worth Googling vintage hypnosis gear, something similar may crop up – after all, these kind of things were used a long time ago and I have a feeling that one was used in a Hammer Horror picture, I don’t recall though, but was a film of that ilk and period. I must look for the Peladon DVD as when I saw it during the screen grab session, something did “click” in my mind where I thought, ‘Oh yeah, that’s a..’ – what the “a” was. :)

  16. Always liked that hypnosis device that pertwee used in Pealdon I just always asumed it was something quickly knocked up by the prop department

    • Could well be. Where do DVDs disappear to once you’ve used them for capping?

      • Finally had time to dig out my copy of Curse of Peladon So, episode 3, 9mins 35secs, there it is! The spinny hypnotic thingy. Yep, see what you mean, I too recognise a bit of the prop. Mainly the bendy thing that has the light that the mirror finally sits on. To me it looks like one of those mini reading torches. This then seems to be screwed into a pen torch. You can see, I’m sure, a clip where it would attatch to a pocket. Anyway, I switched on the subtitles to see if there would be a mention as to what it was, & Lo! There was. This is what it said, ‘The spinning Mirror was part of the fuselage of a model aeroplane. It was another kit that had been acquired from Century 21′. Still not 100% sure of all the bits, but nearer now. So a fuselage of a model aeroplane? I have no idea what type of aeroplane or size. Not an Airfix I’m guessing ;)

      • Good find! I’ll have some spare time come Saturday as I’ll have the house to myself, so after I’ve had a good tidy around (and hopefully having found the DVD – it can’t be far) I’ll go and watch the scene in question. The spinning mirror section is off the shelf, I’m sure of that… could even be part of an old microscope.

        Makes me wonder what on Earth this Dora the Explorer toy is meant to be. Colour me confused.

  17. Ha! I couldn’t even find the Dora Explorer toy, but am curious as to what it looks like.

    Re the 2nd Dr Sonic Screwdriver prop, I had message today from Jamie himself, Mr Frazer Hines. He was sure the colour of the end was blue, so that narrows it down & am fairly certain I’ve found it :) (not the original, just the make)

    Blimey I feel I’m on a props roll this month! Now all I need to do is track down that Radiation thingy that I always thought was The Sonic prop, from 3 Doctors. Plenty of time on my hands? Ha, seems like it! ;)

    • I asked my wife about the Dora toy and she seems to think that it may have been a freebie that came stuck to the front of a Dora magazine. Going by the cheapness of it, I guess she’s probably right.

      Good show with Frazer. I have a funny feeling that we’ll never truly get to the bottom of the first Sonic, other than it being a pen light and some suitable candidates as to which it could possibly have been. Those things are so cheap to make and there were so many produced by a multitude of companies that the task of tracking it down could be extremely drawn out. I’ve got a couple of pen lights here that aren’t even registered on the Flashlight Museum and I know I haven’t a hope in hell of finding any info on them.

      Even at the end of the day with our “candidate” pen lights, we may never be able to fully identify the Sonic because of the poor quality of the screen resolution of 1960s telly. Let’s hope that “Fury” is one day recovered – that may prove helpful.

      Oh yes, the Radiation Detector. That really did look like a load of junk stuck together. I did try to convince Character Options to do a toy of that, I even went as far as to do the drawings for it to illustrate the prop for them (along with a bunch of other hand props), but it wasn’t to be.

      While you’re on your roll with props, try your hand at tracking down some of the long lost original props from yester-year; Hartnell TARDIS, War Machines, Quarks etc, etc, etc…

      • Ah yeah lots of free toys in TV-tie in comics these days & quite different to those on general release. That would be why then. What a shame CO didn’t go with that radiation prop. I would have bought one. They could have built it up along with others as the Drs toolkit. Much better than an assortment of non TV Sonics, lovely as they are, & better looking than the current incarnation. But as I say, a real shame, I love that prop. Damn, will have to make one myself.

        Quarks, Tardis, guest stars from the ‘f0ks. I like to think that there is a Hanger 17 out there, where some bonkers BBC boffins stored all the props & costumes for Who, The Goodies & period dramas &left instructions that it can’t be open for 60yrs like a huge time capsual. Perhaps its under the statue of Petra in the Blue Peter Garden & the damage done to the garden wasn’t by vandals, but by who fans hot on the secret location (my God I’ve eaten too much cheese! Where is all this coming from?!?). Change the subject.

        Ah ‘Fury’, wherefore art thou? Sitting rotting underground in a landfill or in someones potting shed wrongly labelled. No doubt! :( This along with ‘Web’ are the only two I’m burning to see & would die a happy man if I did so. Sometimes I long for the local fan club days where you were mysteriously invited to someones house to view a yet to be released episode in secret! Oh Innocent days. Knowing our luck if Fury was found, the screwdriver scene would be damaged! Or not a clear shot of it. I was hoping that Bob Monkhouse’s collection would have held a copy of at least one missing episode, but no. Oh & why is it that all the rubbish stories pop up? Another blinking Hartnell? Nope, just not fair. Come on great TV Guardian in the sky pull your remote out. It should have been two Troughtons… & not rubbish ones either.

      • Exciting stuff does pop up from time to time in the strangest of places, not just film cans and the like, but props and costumes too. There are plenty of people out there just sitting on stuff and never uttering a word about it. Mavick Chen’s Space Spar ship still exists – I found that surprising and I’d certainly love to get a look at that. But, if people don’t want to talk, then who are we to argue? We just have to live with it.

        I’ll invite you round at some stage and we can go hunting for that mythical Hanger 17-like storage facility where all these goodies are hidden away… I reckon it’s in that dis-used railway tunnel system that’s across from TV Centre in London.

  18. Ah f0ks should read 70’s! Damn these alt keys on my phone!

    • Yeah, I wondered what that meant. I thought it was some hip slang that I wasn’t privy to.

    • Yep I totally agree, its up to the folk who are sitting on the TV treasures to speak out if they want to. I can understand it, as all the stuff was originally destined for the junkyard before they stepped in & rescued it.

      The hunt for Hanger 17? Right, you’re on! We may even find a Yeti down that tunnel! Just say the word & I’ll pack my sarnies, packet of Borbons & flask of tea!

      • Some people just don’t want the inevitable attention that speaking openly about an item that they may have will bring, I have a friend just like this. Also, when props are junked and someone rescues it out of the skip, although it’s been discarded, technically you could see the retrieval as theft, though that is a harsh way to put it.

        I mentioned this about 7 years ago on a forum somewhere that Mat Irvine said to me many years ago that he threw away Tom Baker’s secondary control room console after having stripped the electronics out of it, something that he now highly regrets. If only I’d been around at the time, I’d have slipped it under my jumper and walked away whistling, all innocent like – still, I managed to salvage one of the original 1977 roundel moulds though… and a few other things.

        Pack your bags with goodies and we’ll go a searching too. Might be fun! :)

  19. Yeah I can see the difficulty & ‘theft’ issue. Bob Monkhouse was stung with that kind of issue over the early video recordings etc. No wonder he kept his mouth shut after a while & refused to offer help as to what he had. Don’t blame him!

    So, ’77 roundel moulds … and a few other things eh? Not the Mergin Nut & Sarahs fluffy owl?

    Yep name the time, space & place. All packed & aready for the hunt ;)

  20. This might have been commented on above, since I didn’t have time to go through all the comments! I’ve been a WHO fan since the mid 70s, when I was young kid. I live in the US. Going to conventions in the 1980s I had a Tardis Key that was sold at them. Looks just like the ones you picture – same back and front, same dull finish. It was a common item for sale back then, along with the plastic sonic screwdriver.

  21. Purple,

    The Mooncrest keys are up & ready to buy, from his site or via ebay, here is a review on. The RPF with photos.

    I’ve not bought mine as yet as waiting to hear how much he’ll charge me for a ‘clean’ 3rd & double-sided 7th (yeah I know not screen accurate but liked his 1st attempted as it looked more like a key)

    Not sure about the etiquette of posting the link or ad, so please feel free to edit as just wanted you to know about the keys as you helped with the info & you said you wanted a set.

    All the best


    • I’m fine with the link there, no problem with that.

      Oddly, I did buy one of his 3rd Doctor keys as I was impressed by how near perfect that he got it. Unfortunately I’ve had two small problems with mine, firstly the glue set before he assembled the two halves, subsequently the key is coming a part at the seam. This is not an issue at all really as it’s an easy fix – it’s just one of those things.

      The other problem is that I have now somehow lost the key. I don’t know what on Earth I’ve done with it, I probably put it somewhere safe from little hands, but I don’t know where. Oh well – I’ll just have to buy another.

      All I have to do now is make the two variations of the McCoy key, the black and the grey.

      Thanks for the heads up anyway! :)

      • Pleasure. Ha, how long did you have the key, a week ;)
        You mention Black & Grey McCoy? What do you mean two versions of it?

      • Yeah, it’s been about a week. I can lose things very easily – people know that I’ve misplaced a full sized K9, Dalek parts (dome and skirt) a couple of Cyberheads and a whole host of smaller items. I put things in a “safe place” then forget where that safe place was!

        The McCoy key, yeah – in Ghostlight they used the black copy which has one version of the star system on the rear, then in Survival the mid tone grey one was used. This one has a similar star system engraved into the rear, it has the stars more or less in the same place with a little bit of variation, but the interconnecting lines are different.

        As I’ve said before, I believe that the reverse detail was added to the cast once removed from the mould. All the original copies that I’ve seen over the years tend to have that variation on the reverse.

        Being a completist can have its downside.

  22. […] to better match the spade shape for the Pertwee key. Le sigh. OK, so check this link here: Pertwee versus Baker TARDIS Key. | PurpleBlancmange As you can see, the keys are indeed the same. Toms key was cast off of Pertwee's key and includes […]

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