Radiophonic Workshop - 50 yearsBookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 April 2008 - Reported by Anthony Weight
The BBC Radiophonic Workshop would have been 50 years old this month. Disbanded a decade ago, the Workshop - based at the BBC's Maida Vale studios in London - was the in-house audio special effects team responsible for the majority of the special sounds, sound effects and electronic music heard in the classic series of Doctor Who.

To commemorate the anniversary of the Workshop, the BBC News website has today published a feature looking back at its work, including embedded video content. Interviewed are Dick Mills and Mark Ayres, both of whom worked extensively on Doctor Who, with Ayres still being involved in the sound restoration for classic series DVD releases.

Speaking about the creation of the iconic voices of the Daleks, Mills says: "We tried to give the impression that whenever a Dalek spoke, it wasn't speaking like we do, it was accessing words from a memory bank, so they all sound the same - dispassionate, mechanical and retrievable."

Both Mills and Ayres are scheduled to appear on Breakfast on BBC One tomorrow. According to a posting by Ayres on the Restoration Team forum today, they will be on about 9.45am. He adds: "In other words, any time between 9.30-10.00am, as long as a more important story does not break."

(Additional reporting by John Bowman, with thanks to Tony Clark.)