Doctor Who Toy History
Vintage Doctor Who Toys 1960s
This history of Doctor Who toys is subdivided into pages for each decade, beginning here with the 1960s. Links to some of the main toy manufacturers can be found on the left hand menu. New vintage Doctor Who toys and features are added all the time. Those who wish to learn more should consult the excellent Howe's Transcendental Toybox (Telos, 2003) by David J Howe & Arnold T Blumberg or join the Forum
The Early Days
When Doctor Who started back in 1963 the kind of sophisticated merchandising we have today just didn't exist. Nonethless with the growing popularity of the show it wasn't long before the promotional possibilities began to be realised. And the toys just kept getting better.
From their very first introduction in The Daleks (1963), the 'pepper pots' were an instant success, ushering in the era of 'dalekmania'.
Toy Daleks first glided into production with the Rolykins Daleks, which came out in the early 60s. All kinds of Rolykins had been previously made, the Dalek version being the latest creation from Marx Toys to roll along on a ball bearing. These Dalek figures were the first miniature toys at around an inch high. The Rolykins Marx Daleks were available in black, silver and red. Read more about Dalek toy history
The first Marx Dalek, and arguably the first Doctor Who figure, was the battery powered 'robot action' Dalek. As well as a flashing head, this early Dalek could, with the aid of its casters, change direction when it bumped into something. This model proved so successful for Marx toys that it was revised and stayed in production well into the 70's. The 60's versions were released in black or silver; 70's versions were in red or yellow.
The Marx Daleks were actually used in the series twice to make the Dalek armies look bigger, once in the Second Doctor story Evil of the Daleks (1967) then the Third Doctor story Planet of the Daleks (1973).
1960s Marx Dalek & 1970s Marx Dalek
Marx not only made the first Doctor Who figures but also the first Doctor Who toys. Like the Marx Dr Who and the Daleks bagatelle game from the mid 60's where bonus points could be scored by landing a ball in the Skaro pocket Marx
The 1965 Selcol Dr Who Nursery Toy Dalek (blue and silver with red arms) was a 12" figure sold by Woolworths in a clear plastic sleeve with a card header. The Selcol Dalek had a stopper underneath that could be removed to fill the dalek with water or sand. The eye stalk, plunger and weapon arm are all removable. The base states 'Under Licence, Selcol, Remove to Fill with Ballast, Made in England'.
Lincoln International cornered the 60s niche market for anti-dalek guns.
Dr Who's Anti-Dalek Neutron Exterminator was made by Lincoln International (London) UK Ltd in 1965. The Neutron Exterminator was a cap gun. Lincoln also made a water pistol version of the dalek gun - Dr Who's Anti-Dalek Jet Immobiliser. Click for more about the Anti-Dalek Gun
Dr Who's Anti-Dalek Neutron Exterminator & Anti-Dalek Jet Immobiliser
Complimenting the Neutron Exterminator and Jet Immobiliser was the Lincoln Dr Who's Anti-Dalek Sonic Disintegrator, a blue and white phaser gun in plastic.
Cowan de Groot (Codeg)
The 1960's Cowan de Groot or Codeg Clockwork Dalek (blue) featured 'realistic action' and wind up key. Like Louis Marx toys the Codeg daleks are highly sought after; tough to find in original box with all non-repro parts. Codeg also released the silver Dalek Money Box Codeg
Epitomising 1960's dalekmania, Cherilea Toys Ltd made the colourful plastic pocket-money toy Swappit Daleks retailing loose at outlets like Woolworths for a shilling. The 3 inch tall Cherilea dalek figures had three moveable and swapable sections which were initially released in light blue, black or silver. Cherilea also released a Mechanoid toy available in the same colours and smaller than the Herts version Cherilea
Cherilea Dalek circa 1965 Thanks Del
In 1965 Chad Valley released the Give A Show Projector with a range of Doctor Who story slides.
The mid 60's also saw the release of Doctor Who's Astro Ray Dalek Gun, a battery operated torch and dart gun by Bell.
Bell Toys Ltd also released 'Cutta-mastic Doctor Who and the Daleks' which involved cutting sheets of polystyrene into dalek shapes with a heated tool. The larger version (pictured) dates from 1965; a smaller boxed version was released from 1966.
Bell Toys Dalek Eraza Board Set contained six wipeable dalek-themed colouring boards.` The Dalek Wonder Slate was a tracing game while Bell's Dalek Oracle was a board game featuring a small plastic magnetic 'pointing' dalek.
From 1965 Bell Toys released the Daleks Wonder Slate, a pocket-money toy. In 2010 a mint example sold for £630 on ebay.
From 1965 Herts Plastic Moulders Ltd released a 7" Dalek found in black or silver; the silver version has black appendages, the black Herts Dalek has silver appendages. The Herts Dalek retailed exclusively at Woolworths and came sealed in a printed plastic bag with the warning 'Be-Ware-Earth-Man-I-Am-A-Dalek'. Herts Plastic Moulders Daleks could be pushed along on their small wheeled undercarriages. Herts also released their version of the Mechanoid which was larger than the Cherilea version and had extendable orange arms.
The earliest and rarest Dalek Dressing Up Costume is by Scorpion Automotives; stocks of these were very limited due to a fire at the production plant in 1964. The other similar sixties role-play toy was the Berwick Toy Company Dalek Playsuit dating from 1965.
For more on the daleks visit the Dalek Toy History page.
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