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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 21 July 2018 at 1:32pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I visited the City of London Police Museum today. Look at this police box:





Can't imagine that particular police box being used by the Doctor!
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 21 July 2018 at 2:28pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

There's one very similar to that in the City that was just a few hundred metres from the building that I used to work in.

Took this photo of it one lunchbreak a few years back:



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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 22 July 2018 at 9:39pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Those could work with my Peter Dinklage as the new Doctor idea.:^)

The Master used a Roman column in some of the old ones, so anything you could get through an opening and into it's other dimension could work.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 22 July 2018 at 10:02pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Ah, the doric TARDIS. Or was it ionian? Not as ionian as the end of Beethoven's Fifth, at least. Certainly not corinthian. The Master needed to learn a thing or two about the corinthian spirit.

Edited by Peter Martin on 22 July 2018 at 10:02pm
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John Byrne
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Posted: 23 July 2018 at 8:40am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

I know they experimented with having the Baker2 Doctor's TARDIS being able to change form, tho not to "blend in". I suppose the police box is just too much a part of the mythos to play with that in any extended way.

One question, tho: Watching the final Capaldi episode, I could not help noticing that the "first" Doctor's TARDIS was smaller than Capaldi's. A bit of googling revealed there have been seven or eight sizes and shapes over the years. Real world explanation, of course, is that the carpenters were not worrying too much about "accuracy" every time they rebuilt the prop. But in Whoniverse context, how would the TARDIS keep changing shape if the chameleon circuit is broken? And please, don't say it's BECAUSE the chameleon circuit is broken!

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Byron Graham
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Posted: 23 July 2018 at 1:30pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Perhaps the TARDIS is choosing to be a police box, and differences between appearances would be like us trying on a new hair style.

Matt Smith's doctor explained it this way:

"Every time the TARDIS materialises in a new location, within the first nanosecond of landing it analyses its surroundings, calculates a twelve-dimensional data map of everything within a thousand-mile radius, and determines which outer shell would blend in best with the environment. And then it disguises itself as a police telephone box from 1963. It's probably a bit of a fault, actually."

But the Doctor lies, so we can't trust a thing he says.




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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 23 July 2018 at 2:45pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Can't imagine that particular police box being used by the Doctor!


Maybe its bigger on the inside. 
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John Byrne
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Posted: 23 July 2018 at 7:27pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Douglas Adams, in a Dirk Gently story he... adapted from a script he wrote for DOCTOR WHO, postulated a TARDIS-like craft that appeared as an era appropriate door, mounted on a convenient section of blank wall.
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 8:01am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

Hasn't the TARDIS exploded twice? I'm sure one of the explosions occurred during "The Mind Robber".

It's a weak excuse, but if it has exploded twice, its reconstitution may have altered its size somewhat.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 8:36am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Being rebuilt was definitely supposed to be an in-story explanation when the show moved to HD. Hard to explain the multiple different iterations of the TARDIS exterior though. I have a nerdy t-shirt that depicts that them all. They aren't too different from each other, but the differences are quirky. The late 70s one has the instruction panel on a black background and is a pretty tiny box and a much lighter blue. The 80s TARDIS has the POLICE PUBLIC CALL BOX strip at the top on a light blue background, which has otherwise always been black.  Only the current one and the original one have the police badge on the right-hand door. That otherwise went missing from 1976 to 2010.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 11:25am | IP Logged | 11 post reply

"Ah, the doric TARDIS. Or was it ionian?"

I don't have a classical education. If it isn't in the Edith Hamilton I'm outta luck. :^(

It's amazing to think of all the blue call box biscuit tins and beach towels and lego sets and such the BBC and licensees have sold people over the years... do they ever give a portion to police causes and funds I wonder?
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 11:42am | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I could be wrong - this was long before internet links - but I am sure I read about a police force that tried to go down that road. 
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 12:55pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply

 do they ever give a portion to police causes and funds I wonder?
---------------------------
Nah, they went to court to fight the police over it. And won, probably rightly so. If there's value in blue boxes on beach towels, it was built up by the BBC not by the Met.



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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 24 July 2018 at 1:01pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

Ah, a 2002 link. That might have been the one I read, although I thought I'd read it in a newspaper.

Glad you shared it, anyway.
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Phil Frances
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Posted: 28 July 2018 at 3:17pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

Great thread, Robbie - I've not seen Police 'Posts' before - as far as I remember ...

There are many Police Boxes still in Scotland ( though not in use nowadays ... ) - the originals were introduced in Glasgow, and were red, apparently -


- though the one in the Glasgow Transport Museum is probably more representative of the initial colour - I'd think ( I'm no expert that said !)


There are also various Police 'Information' Boxes I've seen in Edinburgh - 


- this one is on the Royal Mile ...

There's one at Crich Tram Museum in Derbyshire, which our kids were surprised to see when we visited a few years ago - the windows on this are hinged at the bottom, and open inwards


- and ( I think ) there is still one on the seafront at Scarborough that I remember from my own childhood ( looking much better in this shot than it was in the late 1970s ... )


There's one also outside Earl's Court tube station in London which is the 'classic' TARDIS, although seems it was put there in 1996 . Google Maps used to allow you to enter the box and find the later version of the 11th Doctor's console room to look around - not sure if that's still the case, though ...






Edited by Phil Frances on 28 July 2018 at 4:02pm
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John Byrne
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Posted: 28 July 2018 at 4:00pm | IP Logged | 16 post reply

I wonder if American readers understand the purpose of the boxes?

The phone mounted in the door was for emergency calls, but the box itself was intended as shelter for the policemen in times of inclement weather -- or just to sit and have a cuppa!

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Phil Frances
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Posted: 28 July 2018 at 4:26pm | IP Logged | 17 post reply

To be honest, I'm not sure many in the UK really understand the purpose either - and I include myself in that. 

The few examples are likely known for looking like 'the TARDIS', and I think are possibly looked on then as a novelty "tribute" or similar, rather than something that used to be functional ; societal memory having moved on.

The one at the tram museum in Crich ( pron. Cry-tch ) was locked, but the hinged windows were open and afforded a slight view of the interior - it looked quite grim, as it was made of concrete rather than the earlier wooden versions. Policemen apparently found those types pretty cold and damp !

They were like a miniature, temporary police station holding inter alia an incident book, fire extinguisher and first aid supplies - and could be used to hold prisoners until onward transport arrived.

I'm fairly sure that London cab drivers also had a network of box style kiosks of a similar design where they could stop for a cuppa and socialise - I seem to think there was a TV programme some years ago featuring some of the remaining ones in the city ; memory though might be tricking me there into equating the two ....




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Peter Martin
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Posted: 28 July 2018 at 7:07pm | IP Logged | 18 post reply

Bizarrely, one was installed near where I grew up recently... and it is actually operational and manned. I'm going back in a couple of weeks; I'll try and take some photos.
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 29 July 2018 at 1:50pm | IP Logged | 19 post reply

I read a book about Victorian policing once. The word "beat" referred to a constable beating his truncheon against a lamppost; by doing that, other police officers in the vicinity would hear that - and rush to assist.

With fewer cops on UK streets now, that wouldn't work, although radios probably made "beating your truncheon against a lamppost" redundant.

Also, beats can vary now. In the book I read, it said that criminals were getting wise to specific beats. They would simply wait until a cop, like clockwork, passed a certain area on his beat - and then would commit a crime. There are still beats, but routes can vary a little.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 July 2018 at 2:20pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

I'm reminded of back when Clark Kent was a TV news anchor. Roger Stern wanted to do a story called "The Six O'Clock Crimes". Seems the bad guys of Metropolis had noticed Superman wasn't around at six each day.
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 30 July 2018 at 12:45pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

Interesting idea for a story!

Incidentally, as recently as 2014, Bournemouth created a police box of sorts:


For any American readers, a PCSO is a Police Community Support Officer. They patrol, but have fewer powers than police officers. Whilst they have the same powers of arrest as any citizen, they are instructed not to arrest anyone as their role is supposed to be engaging and a little less confrontational.
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