Doctor Who - Documentary s11e14 Episode Script

Now & Then

NARRATOR: From a narrative point of view, the events shown in Planet of the Spiders all take place within a relatively small area.
Even when the major chase sequence scene in Episode 2 is factored in, which begins at UNITHeadquarters and continues over land, air, and water.
In reality, however, the filming locations used for the story were spread over a much wider area and covered no less than three different counties.
The early scenes of Mike Yates collecting Sarah from her train were filmed on the 11th of March, 19 74, at Mortimer Station at Stratfield Mortimer in Berkshire.
Only one hour was allocated to the shooting of these scenes, so timing was of the essence, since only two trains were due to stop at the station during the filming period.
The scenes in the first episode, showing the exterior of the meditation centre that Mike Yates is attending, were shot around nine miles north of Mortimer Station on the other side of the M4, at Tidmarsh Manor, in the village of Tidmarsh.
The scenes at Tidmarsh Manor were shot on the same day as those at the railway station, although some camera trickery was used for the sequence, showing Mike and Sarah's supposedly hasty departure from the meditation centre.
As they skid away from the courtyard, they drive at some speed down the road before stopping at the far gate, where they leave the car and double back.
In reality, however, they're not leaving the house, but driving up to it, and the car is actually left just a short distance away from the front door.
The earlier scene of the car skidding off the road was filmed a short distance away from the manor on Tidmarsh Lane, just west of Bere Court Road.
Nearly 50 miles away from Tidmarsh is the town of Devizes and Le Marchant Barracks, the former home of the Wiltshire Regiment.
The site of this Grade II listed building has now been converted into a new housing estate, although the doorway seen in 1974 has since been replaced by a new window.
Although the old barrack block built in 1878 and used as UNIT HQ in the story still remains, it has now been converted into private apartments.
The countryside just east of Ramsbury formed the backdrop for much of the road chase sequence in Episode 2.
Ramsbury Road, running along the eastern side of Membury Aerodrome, was used for several shots during the chase, including those of the police car turning into the airfield where the gyrocopter is seen to both take off and land.
The airfield was originally opened in 1942, and is still occasionally used by light aircraft, although areas of the original runway have since been removed and the land given over to private enterprise.
The southern junction of nearby Half Mile Road was used for multiple shots during the course of the chase between the Whomobile, Bessie, and the police car, with the camera shifting position to hide the fact that the vehicles were passing by the same junction on several occasions.
And to try and disguise the location even further, one shot of the Whomobile was actually flipped.
So that it appeared to come from a different direction.
During the chase, the police car drives up Half Mile Lane, following the Whomobile and Bessie.
But Half Mile Lane was actually the location where the police car is first seen in the layby.
This is Membury Crossroads and it had previously appeared in the 1971 story The Dæmons for the scene where the Doctor and Jo are sent in the wrong direction by the spinning road sign.
Three years later, the location was reused in the programme, once again appearing in several different shots making up part of the car chase.
The conclusion of the chase sequence moved around 55 miles northwest out of Wiltshire and over to Westbury-on-Severn in Gloucestershire on the banks of the river Severn.
The cast and crew gathered themselves together on Strand Lane, around which most of the river sequences were filmed on the 14th and 15th of March.
The owner of the jet boat was played by regular stuntman Terry Walsh, whilst Mr Hopkins was played by Michael Pinder, the owner and supplier of the two hovercraft used in the filming, one of which is seen on screen, driven by the Doctor, whilst the other was used to carry the camera crew filming the shots on the river itself.
The scene where the Doctor takes his hovercraft on an overland shortcut took place further along Strand Lane with him heading out over the fields, towards the Church of St Mary, St Peter and St Paul in Westbury-on-Severn.
But the rise over which the Doctor is seen to drive the hovercraft is exactly the same one he drives over again when he runs over the local vagrant played by stuntman Stuart Fell.