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1966 couldn’t possibly compete with the Dalekmania of 1965 in terms of the amount of new merchandise released. However, it’s important to remember that many of the items released the previous year remained available throughout 1966 and continued to be advertised in trade catalogues and magazines. There was certainly no shortage of Doctor Who and the Daleks items in the shops this year.

World Distributors produced a series of six activity books

World Distributors produced a series of six activity books

A few merchandise items, however, became available for the first time in 1966. Most importantly, World Distributors, the publisher of the Dr. Who Annual, released a series of activity books—two puzzle books, two sticker books, and two painting books—featuring William Hartnell as the Doctor. In the same vein, Souvenir Press Ltd. issued a "Dalek Action Paint ‘n Puzzle" book. Tower Press Ltd. also issued a "Dalek Pencil Craft" set – a boxed set of black and white line drawings and coloured pencils. The Dalek Pencil Craft set was advertised in the trade journal "Games & Toys" and was offered as a prize in a TV Century 21 competition, but none are known to have survived.

A number of books were issued during 1966. World Distributors published the second Dr. Who Annual, as well as a one-off annual-sized, illustrated storybook, “Dr. Who and the Invasion from Space.” Souvenir Press, in conjunction with Panther Books, published its third and final Dalek book, “The Dalek Outer Space Book.” The first foreign language Doctor Who book was published by U M West – Friesland Hoorn in the Netherlands this year: "Dr. Who en de Daleks," a Dutch translation of David Whitaker’s “Dr. Who: In an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks.”

A record was also released this year. Century 21 Records issued “The Daleks,” a 21-minute mini album containing the soundtrack to “Planet of Decision,” the final episode of The Chase, with linking narration. The album can be found in two versions—one with and one without the Eric Winstone arrangement of the Doctor Who theme. Versions were also released in Australia and New Zealand.

An interesting item released in 1966 was the Dalek Kiddy Ride, manufactured by Edwin Hall & Co. These coin-operated rides were seen on seafronts and amusement arcades across the UK in the 1960s and into the 1970s. The Dalek ride was first exhibited at the Amusement Trades Exhibition, held at Alexandra Palace, London, 25th-27th January 1966 and was released for the 1966 summer season. A child would access the ride through a side opening and sit facing levers that move the appendages. The version in The Space Museum is an unusual variant with a periscope, allowing the child to see outside. When the rider inserted sixpence, the Dalek rotated and moved in a figure-of-eight pattern; lights flashing and sounds playing. It’s not known exactly how many Dalek Kiddy Rides were manufactured, but is estimated to be between 35 and 50, of which only a handful survive.

One of two variant cast cards of Patrick Troughton as the Doctor

One of two variant cast cards of Patrick Troughton as the Doctor

Changes to the principal cast provided new opportunities to collect additional fan cards. Jackie Lane joined as companion, Dodo Chaplet, in 1966. We have been unable to find an official BBC copyright cast card for Dodo. However, a small collection of Ms. Lane’s contemporary fan mail is in The Space Museum and includes multiple copies of the photo card with space for a signature that is shown in The Gallery, and this was almost certainly used in her responses to letters from viewers. The addition of Anneke Wills as Polly and Michael Craze as Ben provided individual cast cards and a card showing both actors; when Patrick Troughton replaced William Hartnell an additional card with the Doctor, Ben, and Polly together was issued, as well as two variant cards of Troughton alone. Two variant cards of Jamie in his Highlanders costume were added when Frazer Hines joined the cast. Later, Hines used a headshot without BBC copyright in his responses to fans.

The Doctor Who films from AARU Productions provide additional collecting opportunities. The release of “Dr. Who and the Daleks” in the United States in July 1966 led to a “Dr. Who and the Daleks” comic from Dell. The sequel film—“Daleks – Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D.”—premiered in the UK on 5 August 1966, and created the same variety of posters, press books, cinema stills, and other promotional material as the original film. A gallery of material associated with the film can be seen here. Most notable in the film’s promotion was a campaign conducted with the Quaker Oats Company and their breakfast cereal, Sugar Puffs. A Dalek was featured on the Sugar Puffs box, which also featured a competition to give away a life-size Dalek. The competition was advertised in children’s comics and received attention in the trade press.

Doctor Who continued to appear in TV Comic throughout 1966. Sadly, Doctor Who lost its centre-page, colour strip and returned to black and white with issue 763, 30th July 1966, when “Orlando,” an ITV children’s thriller series, took its place. The final strip featuring William Hartnell as the Doctor appeared in issue 783 on the 17th December 1966. Patrick Troughton’s Doctor took over the strip without fanfare the following week in issue 784 on 24th December 1966. Doctor Who appeared in the TV Comic Holiday Special and the TV Comic Annual that year.   Similarly, the Daleks strip appeared in TV Century 21 for the whole of 1966 and into January 1967, when the final strip was published in issue 104 on 14th January 1967. However, the Daleks received far less attention in TV Century 21 this year than they had in 1965, with just two cover appearances: issue 50 on 1st January 1966 and issue 87 on 17th September 1966 following the release of the film Daleks – Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D., and with far fewer competitions offering Dalek merchandise as prizes. 

Doctor Who still received good attention in the Radio Times, with articles that coincided with the start of each new story and additional coverage when Patrick Troughton took over the role of the Doctor. This year again saw one Radio Times cover, for the issue dated 5th-11th November 1966 and the first episode of The Power of the Daleks. More details of the Doctor Who content in the Radio Times can be seen here. Following his departure from the title role, William Hartnell appeared in pantomime, where the promotional material shown in the Gallery relied heavily on his Doctor Who connection. Other press coverage in newspapers and magazines is also represented in the Gallery. 

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