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The Doctor Who USA Tour was a travelling exhibition which toured the United States from 1986 to 1987.

After several years in the planning this £2 million venture, a co-operation between Lionheart Television International (the BBC USA Distributors) and Monarch International (the BBC's US Exhibition and Promotions Agent) finally came to fruition with the this exhibition.


The exhibition was primarily based within a 48 foot long truck trailer, with visitors walking through the length of the trailer. Both the entrance and exits were opened up and formed police box entrance/exits.

"They'll adore it. They get the chance to see and almost touch the actual props and costumes from the programme."Colin Baker[1]

Notable elements[]

  • Bessie was on display on the outside of the trailer.


  • The tour was given a press launch on the 9 March 1986 in the United Kingdom, Elstree prior to shipping to the United States. Colin Baker, Nicola Bryant and Janet Fielding were all present and in costume for the press launch.[1]
  • Also at the UK press launch were a Cyberman and a Cryon.
  • Following the press launch the truck was loaded onto a ship bound for the United States in May 1986.
  • Once it arrived in the United States it was given another press launch, this time attended by Peter Davison and Michael Grade.[1]
  • In October 1986, the tour stopped in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area as part of a combined with the DWFCA (Doctor Who Fan Club of America), Colin Baker and Patrick Troughton were present for the events there.[2]
  • In 1987 when the tour again stopped in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, Sylvester McCoy put in an appearance during a break in filming Doctor Who.[2]


  • The trailer used for the tour was a 48 foot long trailer, made by a firm called Vanplan in Warrington, and was too long to be legally driven on UK roads.
  • Following the press launch the truck was loaded onto a ship bound for the United Sates in May 1986, but it was damaged upon loading at the docks at Liverpool.
  • The tour served three functions: to thank the American fans for their support, to promote the television series and to be a commercial venue in its own right.
  • The exhibition was intended to run for two years (on the road for 3 days a week[1], sited for the rest at different venues), but ran short.
  • The trailer was damaged both on loading at the docks at Liverpool and also whilst on the road (due to in at least one case to a low bridge[3]).
  • It was shipped into New York to begin the USA tour starting in Washington DC.
  • Some mistakes were made in the guide to the exhibition, such as stating the Cybermen had appeared alongside every doctor except Colin Baker (three exhibits were from a Cybermen story he starred in, Attack of the Cybermen), saying the Cryons appeared in Revenge of the Cybermen rather than Attack of the Cybermen, and calling Mestor 'Nestor'.
  • After the tour ended, the truck was sent to a scrapyard in Derbyshire, and was discovered in a dilapidated state by a fan in 2001.



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