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Published on March 9th, 2012 | by Philip Bates

The Ultimate Location?

It’s an odd sensation, standing somewhere Doctor Who has been filmed. It may just be a normal street, and it really shouldn’t feel that special – but it does.

Given the task of picking one Doctor Who location to visit, many would just say ‘Cardiff,’ and have done with it. Of course, you can go to the Millennium Stadium, which has doubled for the Stormcage Facility, Van Statten’s museum, the corridors of Torchwood in The Runaway Bride, and various other places in time and space. Or Eddie’s Diner, the Cardiff-based, American-styled cafe where Amy, Rory and River meet with the Doctor after he’s been shot. Maybe you could just wander around Roald Dahl Plass and look at the ‘the Torchwood hub.’

But there’s so much more than that. Just look at the recent news that the series has begun filming in Spain, a country the show has visited twice before. The series has a long history of filming… everywhere!

It would also be too easy to say you want to visit Lime Grove Studio, BBC Television Centre (RIP) or Upper Boat – because don’t we all! So where would we all love to go?

Portmeirion is best known for being ‘that creepy place where The Prisoner was filmed,’ obviously, but Season Fourteen’s The Masque of Mandragora was also shot there, doubling for San Martino. There, you can see where the Fourth Doctor escaped execution at Gloriette Piazza, or follow the path of the Mandragora Helix through Bridge House.

The council estate the Doctor, Amy and Rory search around to find the ‘scariest place in the universe’ in Night Terrors is in Bristol. Waring House can be found on Redcliff Hill, and filming in September 2010 eased Bristolians’ anger (a little bit) after the setting of Casualty moved elsewhere.

The creepy greenery where The Flood first surfaced in s can be explored at the National Botanic Gardens of Wales, while Victoria Place is the home of Adelaide.

Doubling for a French avenue, the driveway of White Plains – a residential house for the elderly in Denham – was the first location used for Doctor Who; though it’s where the first Doctor is seen wandering about, the Time Lord was actually played by Brian Proudfoot, as William Hartnell was busy rehearsing!

Doctor Who’s even been allowed to film at Stonehenge.

I could go on forever.

Personally, I’d love to visit two places in particular. Well, two places that immediately spring to mind anyway.

Firstly, who wouldn’t want to go to Monument Valley and Lone Rock Beach in Utah? Other than the stunning vistas, these two locations are of interest because they were used in The Impossible Astronaut/ Day of the Moon – and various flashbacks throughout series six! Monument Valley was seen extensively, in particular when the TARDIS team meet up again and a Stetson is brutally murder by River.

Lone Rock Beach is best known as Lake Silencio, where the ‘Doctor’ was ‘killed.’ It’s so famous, even the Tesselacta have the lowdown on it!

And finally returning to the classic series, how about Oldbury Power Station in Thornbury, where a possessed Sarah Jane revived Eldrad in The Hand of Fear?

The actual station is private, naturally, but you can still get some good exterior views. Tragically, however, the power station was decommissioned last month, after threats of closure since 2008; a fact that will bring a tear to the eye of even the most stone-faced Whovian.

Maybe they could turn it into a Doctor Who museum…?

What about you? Do you have a Doctor Who location that you would particularly love to visit? Let us know in the comments below.

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About the Author

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When he’s not watching television, reading books ‘n’ Marvel comics, listening to The Killers, and obsessing over script ideas, Philip Bates pretends to be a freelance writer. He enjoys collecting everything.




7 Responses to The Ultimate Location?

  1. avatar Francesco says:

    My favourite ever is, without any doubt, “Bad Wolf Bay”. I’ve been there once and I’m going back there soon again. It also is a “neverending” location, since they keep using that beach again and again.

    Then I’d love to visit “Wester Drumlins” from “Blink”, even though there’s no public access.

    And I agree that I’d love to go to “Lake Silencio” too.

    Another place I loved seeing was Rose’s house in Cardiff… the location where she first walks with the Doctor and the TARDIS is shown for the first time in the new series… that was awesome too!

  2. avatar Krumstets says:

    I really liked the location shots for Full Circle . I’ve always wanted to go there.
    I live in London so have seen many locations here. Butlers Wharf near Tower bridge was one of the first places I went to in the mid eighties. That location worked well.
    Maybe the production team could pick a different British town or city to be used for at least one story every season….
    Overseas location filming is great, I hope they can move further afield in the future.


  3. Hmm, it might be obvious but with 2 opportunities to take a short detour this year I’d like to drop into Aldbourne and make sure they didn’t really blow that church up…

  4. avatar Chuck Foster says:

    My personal favourite is Trent Park/Middlesex University (Mawdryn Undead). We’ve held a picnic annually there for over a decade now, and it’s been interesting to see how it subtly changed over the years. Not to mention making new Who friends, too!

    The other favourite is Dungeness (The Claws of Axos), not leastly because that was where I went on my ‘first date’ with my partner! :)

  5. avatar Gordon Horne says:

    I’ve been to:

    Eddie’s Diner (Had dinner there twice while sitting in the seat where River sat while they discussed the diaries)
    Cardiff Bay
    Ianto’s Shrine
    Stonehenge
    Clearwell Caves
    Raglan Castle
    Caerphilly Castle
    Cardiff Castle
    Chepstow Castle
    Llandaff
    Llandaff Cathedral
    The Street from the Lodger
    Bad Wolf Bay

    and I’m from Edinburgh!

  6. avatar Mark Scales says:

    There are so many fantastic locations I’ve been to so far. St Mary’s Church in Marshfield (where Donna gets married), the DVD shop from Blink, Puzzlewood (The forest on the Byzantium), but the nicest location I’ve visited so far has to be the beautiful village of Skenfrith as seen in Amy’s Choice.

  7. avatar TonyS says:

    From the Classic Series I have been to East Hagbourne (Android Invasion), Hound Tor (Sontaran Experiment), the steps of Saint Paul’s Cathedral (Invasion. From new Who I have been to the shop used as Magpie Electrics, Cardiff Bay, Castell Coch (Journey’s End), Caerphilly Castle, Cardiff Castle, Stonehenge, Llancaiach Fawr Manor erm and other places. I’m sure there are others

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