Kenneth Kendall and Sir Patrick Moore both appeared as themselves in Doctor Who

BBC Personalities Pass Away

Although neither man will be well-recognised as having appeared in Doctor Who (outside the show’s fans) we were sad to learn this week of the deaths of veteran broadcaster Sir Patrick Moore and former newsreader Kenneth Kendall.

Kenneth Kendall and Sir Patrick Moore both appeared as themselves in Doctor Who

Both men made notable guest appearances in Doctor Who 44 years apart, as well as both being recognisable elements of British TV watching culture since the 1950s.

Kenneth Kendall

Well known both as a newsreader (he helmed the BBC’s 9 o’clock news for six years from 1975) and as the presenter of Channel 4’s Treasure Hunt, Kendall was the first newsreader to be seen on camera on BBC TV back in 1955 and was voted the most popular newscaster by readers of the Daily Mirror in 1979.

It was confirmed today that Kendall died peacefully a few weeks ago after suffering a stroke. He was 88.

Kendall appeared as himself in 1966’s Doctor Who adventure The War Machines, filling that vital role of the “newsreader reporting panic” that later become recognizable in the Russell T Davies era.

Sir Patrick Moore

The legendary astronomy enthusiast – who hosted every edition of The Sky At Night on BBC TV from its first broadcast on April 24th 1957 to its most recent December 2012 edition – “passed away peacefully at 12:25″ on Sunday, December 9th at the age of 89. Interestingly his passion for astronomy was fed by an appetite for books, a by-product of missing school due to heart problems as a child.

Fans of modern Doctor Who will recall that Sir Patrick appeared in Matt Smith’s first episode, The Eleventh Hour, as one of the experts the newly regenerated Time Lord summons to help him defeat the Atraxi; Moore also appears to take a shine to Mrs Angelo (Annette Crosbie).

Both will of course be sadly missed in the respective fields; indeed, I would say that Moore was as important to astronomy as Galileo, Copernicus, Hubble and NASA.

Christian Cawley

A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

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