An exciting new attraction has been added to Cardiff Bay’s Doctor Who Experience after the hit show’s studios were opened up to fans for the first time ever.
Makers of the BBC series have decided to give fans a unique chance to spend time in the TARDIS and get up close and personal with Daleks at the studios in Roath Lock.
The focal point of the tour is the new TARDIS console room, which has been on screen since the 2012 Christmas special and will be featured in the much-anticipated 50th-anniversary episode on November 23.
The attraction’s events manager Courtney Lewis said: “This is the first time ever we’ve opened the studio and the first time the public have been allowed on the set, which is a really big deal for us.
“It will only be open for the summer – so fans need to take up the chance while they can. It really is a unique opportunity for Doctor Who fans.”
The Doctor Who Experience, which is a five-minute walk from the studios, opened in July 2012.
Courtney said: “The way it will work is people will have the chance to buy a joint ticket for the studio tour and Doctor Who Experience.
“On top of that, you can also add the walking tour if you wish. That’s something we’ve launched during the past month and involves visiting 30 filming locations we use for the show around Cardiff Bay.
Courtney said the studio opening was part of the show’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
“And with it being summer – meaning all the production staff are on holiday – we thought this would be the best time to let people have a look,” he added.
“The tours are done in groups of four or six, so they feel quite exclusive.
“And people are allowed to take pictures and videos.
“It’s such an iconic set and it’s great that people are now able to come and see it for themselves.”
The new TARDIS took three months to build and is by far the biggest in the show’s history. Among the first people to see inside were 10-year-old twins Owen and Alex Eyres, from Llanharry, who visited the studio with their dad Mark.
Owen said: “I really enjoyed it. My favourite part was going into the TARDIS – that was amazing.
“Everything looked really different than it does when you watch it on TV and the studio was bigger than I thought it was going to be.
“I really can’t wait to watch the next episode now.”
Alex added: “It was the first time I’ve been on a TV set, which was really cool.
“I wasn’t expecting it to be as big as it was, and the TARDIS looks a lot different on the inside than it does outside.
“The Weeping Angel was quite scary and the Dalek we saw had a plunger for his hand, which was funny.”
The crew has just finished shooting the anniversary episode at the studios and Matt Smith will be back in September to film the Christmas special, which will be his last episode as the Doctor.
Tickets for the Doctor Who studio tour are on sale now.
The tours will run until Sunday, August 25 and begin from the Doctor Who Experience foyer.
It is advisable to book in advance of a visit.
Prices start from £20.50 for adults and £14.50 for children.
Tickets also include general admission to the Doctor Who Experience.
For more details visit the website www.doctorwhoexperience.com