29 August 2012

The Lost Episodes

Archive On 4: Doctor Who, The Lost Episodes. "Shaun Ley investigates what happened to 108 missing episodes of Doctor Who from the 1960s, why the tapes were wiped and how dedicated fans hunted down copies of other episodes in film collections from Cyprus to New Zealand. And while we may have lost those early programmes, Shaun hears how home recordings ensured all the audio survived." 

This fascinating radio feature includes interviews and conversations with '60's era Doctor's assistants Peter Purves, Pauline Collins and composer/sound designer/Radiophonic Workshop archivist Mark Ayres amongst other familiar voices.


Anonymous said...

At that time video recording was undertaken on Ampex machines that used mag tape that cost £200 per reel. After being transmitted the tape was wiped in order to be used again as the cost was so high that it was impossible to consider keeping programmes on tape.


Mr. Primate said...

Quite right, it's all there in the programme and I've no doubt that wiping the tapes was The Right Thing To Do At The Time. However I think the tale of the lost episodes only serves to make me ponder on what similar irretrievable data loss happening today, due to unstable digital archiving etc, future generations may bemoan us all for.