As Doctor Who reaches its 60th anniversary this November, the National Science and Media Museum has revealed a selection of the series’ most iconic characters and items from its collection.

To commemorate the Doctor’s 60th anniversary, three special episodes are planned, featuring the return of beloved characters such as Catherine Tate and David Tennant. Additionally, Neil Patrick Harris will make his debut as the Celestial Toymaker, one of the Doctor’s oldest adversaries. The National Science and Media Museum’s collection also houses familiar faces and iconic foes that could make a return to welcome the Doctor.


Among the Doctor’s most feared enemies is the Dalek, a resident of the National Science and Media Museum. Introduced to Doctor Who in 1963, these alien creatures have been a recurring presence in almost every season of the ‘New Who’ era since the series’ revival in 2005. The visual design of the Dalek, a blend of alien terror and domestic familiarity, was crafted by designer Ray Cusick and scriptwriter Terry Nation. In celebration of the anniversary, a specially crafted Dalek will be showcased in a new, free display at the Science Museum in London, part of the Science Museum Group, from November 23 to January 3.


Cyberman costume as used in the T.V. series ‘Dr Who’ made by the B.B.C., London, c.1988

The iconic evil cyborg first appeared in the Silver Nemesis serial in 1988, facing off against the Doctor on the grounds of Windsor Castle. Standing at an imposing 6ft2”, the Cyberman sports a silver-painted suit, cricket gloves, rubber army boots, and its infamous side-handled fiberglass helmet. The original Cyberman costume from 1988, part of the museum’s BBC Heritage Collection, was previously exhibited at the Science Museum in “Science Fiction: Voyage to the Edge of Imagination.”

Musical Instruments and Items from the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop


In the early 1960s, the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop crafted the famous theme tune for Doctor Who. Initially composed by Ron Grainer, the theme was given its distinctive electronic sound by Delia Derbyshire. The museum houses items used in creating this iconic theme tune, including various musical instruments, drumsticks, bells, gongs, recorders, as well as a tape splicing tool and a contact microphone utilized in the Radiophonic workshop.

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