A History of the Dalek props in Doctor Who

A History of the Dalek props in Doctor Who – From ’63 to ’88


Dalek 63-88 is a research project about a very specific area of TV production: The provisioning of Dalek props for Doctor Who. This site documents every casing which was created for the programme, the individuals who worked on them, the companies that made them, and the events (both on and off screen) in which they were involved.

Begin the story with The Dead Planet

What’s New

  • Exclusive! The Emperor Prop refurb (11/17/2015) - With huge thanks to Mike Tucker and the team at The Model Unit, we are able to present an exclusive look at the recent refurb of The Emperor prop. You can read all about it here.
  • The Magician’s Apprentice (9/20/2015) - Following last night’s new episode, we have posted our initial rundown of the Dalek props used in The Magician’s Apprentice. Given the similarities to the Daleks seen in the asylum, you’d be forgiven for thinking they were all the same, but no! Read all about it.
  • New Series Daleks! (9/19/2015) - You’ve all been very patient while we have worked away at the New Series Dalek props and we are pleased to say that the first two pages are now live here! We really hope you enjoy them and needless to say, over the coming weeks and months we will be adding the other New Series […]
  • On going research (8/25/2015) - Whilst we haven’t had a major new updates for a number of months, work is ongoing continuously in the background. In the last few days we have added a number of snippets of information and images to the 1960s pages – so its definitely worth giving them a re-read!
  • Terry Nation’s Daleks! (3/2/2015) - After our exhaustive research on the two Dalek movies we have been able to more accurately tell the history of Terry Nation’s own Dalek force. Read all about it here.
  • An Original Dalek Investigation (1/30/2015) - We have done an in-depth analysis of an original Dalek prop, which we were able to photograph nearly ten years ago. The page shows how the Dalek’s unique lumps and bumps could be used to confirm its use throughout the first decade of Doctor Who. Read the analysis of this original Shawcraft Dalek skirt here.
  • Shepperton Investigations (10/3/2014) - In a slight change of research, Jon has been working hard on telling the story of the locations for Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150AD. You’ll be amazed to see how this production was put together and where some bits were filmed. Read the new page here.
  • Exciting New Remembrance Info (3/28/2014) - We’ve been extremely lucky lately in being given hand-written FX notes from the production of Remembrance of the Daleks and it has given a fascinating insight into the production process. Jon has been working tirelessly on an update to theRemembrance section and the contemporary documents Gav has found threw up some interesting questions which have now […]
  • “Life and Times of a Dalek” feature in Doctor Who Magazine. (3/5/2014) - We are ridiculously excited to announce our four-page feature in issue 471 of Doctor Who Magazine. Written up by Gav and researched with Jon over many years, it gives a simplified account of the life-story of one particular Dalek. There are a couple of Daleks whose tales would have been quite interesting to tell but […]


We’re Jon and Gav and we’ve been researching Daleks together since 2005. Jon started the whole thing in 2002 but Gav came along later with a shared interest to help revamp the whole site. It’s not the first attempt at a prop history and much ground work was laid down in articles by Tony Clark and Stephen James Walker in the 1980s, and by Mark Dando and Dave Muirhead in the 1990s. But often the production team contradicted each other and resources in those days were limited. With episodes now clearer than ever on DVD, and so many photos available, we decided the only way to tell the whole story was to start from scratch and work through every piece of visual evidence from the start.

After two years of exhaustive investigation, a new site was launched in 2007. But over time, new fragments of information came to light and some cracks seemed to appear in the reasoning behind certain conclusions we’d reached. As the niggles accumulated, it became obvious that it was time once again to revamp the site.

Following some helpful insight from researcher Simon Ayers, seven months of painstaking analysis resulted in a huge relaunch in the summer of 2010. A new timeline was finally created in which each prop could be followed from its construction until its last appearance on screen – and in many cases beyond.

Since 2010, over 100,000 visitors have dropped by and we’re immensely proud to have been featured on the BBC’s Click programme. In 2013 our research began to be used for the Dalek ‘costume’ profiles in the Doctor Who Figurines Collection Magazine and in 2014 we have been honoured to contribute a feature to Doctor Who Magazine.

We continue to delve deeper into the stories of these props and many new pages are currently under construction. Our research time is often limited due to our jobs but we hope to put new pages live as soon as we can! (If you go on Facebook here and click LIKE, you’ll get all the news).

We have enjoyed everything that has gone into this site and we hope you enjoy reading it. We love getting comments and we’re excited to hear anecdotes about Daleks. If you have any private photos of TV props then please get in touch because they could solve the mysteries which still remain.


We’d like to express our sincere thanks to all the people who’ve shared photos and snippets of info down the years which have made our research possible.

For invaluable photos which made it all possible, thank you Richard Atkinson, James Russell, Robert Kew, and Tony Clark. For patiently answering our inane questions, thank you Mike Tucker, Stuart Brisdon, Martin Wilkie and Scott Wayland. For support, information, and general Dalek debate, thank you Richard Bignell, Simon Ayers, Steve Allen, Andrew Pixley, Mick Hall, Chris Balcombe, John Kelly, Derek Handley, Matt Parish, Mark Dando, Steve Murray and various members of Project Dalek Forum (John Darley, Tony S, J “MovieDalek”).

About Us

Jon has been a Doctor Who fan since the early 1970s and has a preference for Tom Baker stories but likes all eras of the show. He has his own Dalek and manages a family run Hi-Fi and TV Shop in Bath which has been established since 1946. He is a keen darts player and organises a local league, as well as being a fan of Pink Floyd and supporter of Liverpool FC. He has also supplied research for Doctor Who Magazine and Doctor Who Figurines Collection. Follow him on Twitter.

Gav was first introduced to Doctor Who during the summer of 1987 via his dad’s video collection of the 1983 repeats. He built his first Doctor Who website in 1997 and started themindrobber.co.uk in 2003. He contributes artwork to various Doctor Who products including the Classic and New Series DVD ranges, and has supplied various features, cover artwork and illustrations for books, Doctor Who Magazine, Doctor Who Adventures and Doctor Who Figurines Collection. Follow him on Twitter.