Doctor Who News Day of the Daleks actor Aubrey Woods dies aged 85

Published on May 15th, 2013 | by Andrew Reynolds

RIP The Controller

Actor Aubrey Woods, better known to Doctor Who fans as The Controller in the 1972 serial Day of the Daleks has passed away aged 85.

Day of the Daleks actor Aubrey Woods dies aged 85

The London born actor was a veteran of stage and screen and was perhaps most famous for his role as the singing sweetshop owner who sang ‘The Candy Man’ in the 1971 Roald Dahl adaptation Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

Woods’ career began at the age of 17 when he played Smike in the film The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby.

His stage roles included the parts of Jacob and Potiphar in the 1991 West End revival of Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Fagin in the musical Oliver! for three years, succeeding Ron Moody in the original 1960 production.

He quickly found himself in demand on BBC radio, writing and appearing in many plays, including his own adaptations of the Mapp and Lucia novels by EF Benson.

His other roles included the theatre musical The Four Musketeers and the radio version of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, while he also wrote the play Trelawny, which was in the West End in the 1970s.

He died in Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, his wife Gaynor told the BBC.

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About the Author


Everyone has a favourite Doctor and mine - just for his honesty, his fairness and his ability to not notice the Master's awful, awful disguises/anagrams (Sir Gilles Estram!?!) - has to be the Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison. The stories didn’t serve him as well as his acting served those stories.

4 Responses to RIP The Controller

  1. avatar zarbisupremo says:

    I didn’t know until yesterday that he sang The Candy Man song. I’ll never be able to look at Day Of The Daleks or Willie Wonka & The Chocolate Factory in the same way again.

  2. avatar Hoosier Whovian says:

    I enjoyed his performance as a very creepy Krantor in the Gambit episode of Blakes 7 where he played opposite John Leeson.

  3. avatar Gareth Kavanagh says:

    An immense talent, very watchable. Ironically, I was only watching Gambit a few days ago.

    “You shall play; THE KLOOT!”

  4. avatar Elena says:

    Controller… my favorite character in all “Doctor Who”! And I can’t forgive Doctor that he didn’t save Controller – he could do it!

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