Tag Archives: Sarah Jane Smith

East Hagbourne, Oxfordshire (The Village That Came To Life) – June 2014

Now for a War MemorialBlip bloop Blip bloop or Hello in Androidese.

Welcome to ‘the village that came to life’ – East Hagbourne in Oxfordshire, filming location for the episode The Android Invasion (1975). I went there as I was passing earlier this week on my way home from another adventure.

This episode is set in the village of Devesham, which East Hagbourne stands in for. The Fourth Doctor and Sarah Jane arrive in the village which is always Friday 6th July, a day with no future. Luckily I went in June or I might have had to stay forever.

I parked my TARDIS near the Fleur de Lys pub and went to liven up the place, (well I tried to at least). The village was deserted just like in the episode! I wonder if the androids were still there? In fact the whole time I was there the only other person that I saw was a young girl wearing a t-shirt that said ‘ Keep Calm, I’m The Doctor’. Awkward but true!

I saw the war memorial in the centre of the road and set off down the road past the Fleur de Lys. The Doctor and Sarah hid in the pub and watched people who could not move and looked like they were statues filled with cement. They came to life eventually – when I watched the episode I tried clicking my fingers at the TV but actually it was the clock striking 12 that brought them out of their trance. I tried to go in the pub myself but it was shut for the afternoon, which was a shame as I wanted a beer. Fooled you!

As I explored I saw some goats and chickens in a garden and the paths were lined with hollyhocks. The weather was sunny and everything looked so summery it was a typical English village. This village is known for The Great Fire of Hagbourne, just 7 years before the Great Fire of London. It is also famous as the place where blotting paper was invented!

In a documentary about this episode ‘The ViIlage That Came To Life’,  Nicholas Briggs  walks around East Hagbourne and interviews some of the local people about what they remember about the filming in July 1975. One lady remembers that hundreds of children from all over the place descended on the village to see if they could get Tom Baker’s autograph! He was still a new Doctor when he filmed the episode.  One of the interviewees had his photo taken with Tom Baker for the local paper as his name was Colin Baker, but not THE Colin Baker! Another remembered his family selling beer from their front window to the crew.

The Android Invasion was the last episode that featured Benton and Harry Sullivan pops up for his last appearance. It is a fan-dabby-dosy story and everyone should watch it!

Do you have any facts about East Hagbourne? Let me know.

Looking forward to seeing you all soon! Bloop blip Bloop blip, Goodbye in Androidese.

 

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Athelhampton House and Gardens, Dorset – May 2014

Garden of the year 1997My FAVOURITE way to spend a sunny day outside is go to places where they have filmed Doctor Who of course! So on a beautiful sunny bank holiday weekend I went to Athelhampton House and Gardens, location of The Seeds of Doom (1976).

The Seeds of Doom features The Fourth Doctor and Sarah Jane and Athelhampton is used as the house of eccentric millionaire Harrison Chase. He has a seed pod found in the arctic permafrost which contains a Krynoid…. OF DOOM.  The Doctor and his companion must stop Harrison and the carnivorous Krynoid from destroying the world.

In the 8 years of my life, this is only the second time I have visited Athelhampton. I used the chameleon circuit to disguise my TARDIS as a car and parked in the car park which was very busy because there was a plant sale. It is lucky there were no Krynoid pods for sale so I didn’t have to worry about fighting plants! First I explored the surprising gardens, one called The Great Court had pyramid shaped yew trees! There were spitting fountains and a huge pond – I couldn’t see any fish but I did see pond weed and pond snails.  I took a walk along the River Piddle and was very glad it was made of water! I then entered the whiffy Dovecote which was quite dark, cool and a bit smelly because it was full of doves.

Next I visited the house which was built in the 15th century – you can’t look in every room because people live there. It was quite dark inside and I had to be patient on the stairs as there were a lot of other visitors. Everything was very old but I felt very welcome there. On the top floor there were paintings made by Marevna who was an artist who once lived at Athelhampton. My favourite was one with a man and a goat – look out for it if you go there.

I left via the gift shop where you can buy Doctor Who stuff and all that jazz and I bought the book The Seeds of Doom and The Deadly Assassin.  The receptionist was very kind and said that I should read John Challis’ autobiography if I want to find out more about the filming at Athelhampton as he played Scorby in the episode.

Athelhampton was also the location for ‘From Time to Time’ (2009) and ‘Sleuth’ (1972). I hope you keep enjoying the locations in this blog  – which location do you think I should do next? Have you been anywhere that Doctor Who has been filmed? Please leave a comment with your answer to these questions, I would love to hear from you.

Thanks for reading!