Barry Letts Passes Away

Administrator - Posted on 09 October 2009

Barry LettsBarry Letts, one of the most influential producers of Doctor Who, has sadly passed away. 

News came over the net just as Doctor Who: Podshock was to begin recording episode 165 and it was confirmed by Gary Russell that indeed we lost one of the champions of Doctor Who today. 

Born in 1925, he first made his mark producing the series in the Jon Pertwee starting with the 1970 with The Silurians and continued through Tom Baker's first story, Robot (1974-75). He returned as Executive Producer during John Nathan-Turner's first series as producer (1980-81).

Barry Lett's contribution to Doctor Who is hard to measure. Aside from producing he has directed and written (sometimes using the pen-name Guy Leopold) for the series. He even can be seen on screen (uncredited) on a couple rare occasions.

Plus, outside of the series proper, he has been involved in many Doctor Who books, documentaries, audio, etc. 

He was very well liked by all. Talented and intelligent. It is a sad day for all Doctor Who fans today with his passing. He will be missed greatly.

Troy Baker's picture

That's a real shame. He will be remembered for his work mostly during the Jon Pertwee era of Doctor Who.


I found an article about him on this link:


Another icon from the classic series passes away and it takes away a bit of my heart each time it happens because it feels like a part of my past goes with their passing.

 BTW: I haven't found this on any of the British news sites so I don't know how much is true about this story. I've checked on BBC, Guardian, Telegraph, Daily Express, etc... and have found no reference to his passing.Perhaps the news is too new.



EDIT: I found more on this site:


It's from Doctor Who online.

daveac's picture

Still sad news - even when an older icon dies.

Sad to hear about this today.

Thank you Barry.


PseudoWho's picture

His was one of my favorite eras of Doctor Who.  I started watching the show with episode one of Ark in Space, so he wasn't my first producer, but he was my second.

My earliest memories of his stories was when I was maybe eight or nine and the local PBS station had only shown Tom Baker stories so far. My family used to spend parts of the summers near Nags Head, NC and every year the first thing I'd do when we got there was thumb through the TV listings to find Doctor Who and when it was time to watch I'd pull out the old black and white TV they kept in a closet at the house where we stayed.

I had seen Robot by that point (I started with Ark in Space e1) so wasn't too confused by why the Doctor was being played by someone else, and I took to the older stories right away, starting with (I think) Claws of Axos.

Goodbye, Barry. You will be missed...

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Doctor Whoovie's picture

I had the pleasure of meeting Barry a couple of years ago, he was a very interesting talker, but did seem very frail at the time.

I would recommend his autobiography "Who and me"  to all Who fans. It was the part 1 of a planned 2 part series, I hope that the second part (or however much is complete) will me made available posthumously.

He directed "The End of the World" which is one of my favorite 2nd Doctor stories, in addition to better known producer role contributions.

I will treasure the autographed books I got in auction (a lot that I split with Podshock's own James Naughton).

RIP Barry.

High Minister's picture

I am a huge fan of the earth-bound Pertwee stories. Letts created an entirely new direction to the show and breathed new life into the format.

 I love the passion and detailed knowledge of all the nuts and bolts of production he had right up to recent years. I always look forward to a commentary or documentary if Letts is involved. He was a BBC producer of the old school.

He was obviously held in great affection by all those he worked with, and was greatly trusted. It certainly doesn't seem at all suprising that it was Barry Letts they turned to to executive produce JNT's first season. (if only he'd stayed on!)

"I'm beginning to lose confidence for the first time in my life - and that covers several thousand years."
Louis Trapani's picture

The Guardian UK posted this obituary article on Barry Letts: Barry Letts Obituary


Troy Baker's picture

Today (Oct 14) Digital Spy has a tribute for the late, great Bary Letts. Here's the link:



Louis Trapani's picture

Thanks for posting the link. We posted it on the Doctor Who: @Podshock Twitter account as well last night.


Troy Baker's picture

There is no problem with that. If anybody finds any news or information related to "Doctor Who' it should be put here. We are all fans of the show here and would like to know the news.


PS: It's nice to know that you're using info I provide on your other sites as well. I consider that a compliment - to bring something so useful to the light.

If anybody finds any news or information related to "Doctor Who' it should be put here.


Agreed. That is the reason our Twitter @Podshock stream is mirrored here as well. 

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