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No Man's Land

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Audio - No Man's Land
No Man's Land
(Martin Day)

 November 2006’s release is "No Man's Land" written by Martin Day. It was original due to be called "We are the Dead". It is directed by John Ainsworth and was recorded 29th and 30th July 2006.

Joining Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor are companions Ace, played by Sophie Aldred, and Hex , played by Philip Olivier. Also starring are: Michael Adams, Michael Cochrane, Rob Dixon, Ian Hayles, Oliver Mellor and Rupert Wickham.

 It is 1917 and The Doctor, Ace and Hex find themselves in a military hospital five miles from the frontline in northern France. It seems they were found unconscious in No Man’s Land. They think they are prisoners and locked up in a dingy room - before they are visited by Lieutenant-Colonel Brook who presents The Doctor with his military orders. Orders for The Doctor and his companions to investigate a murder at the Charnage hospital - A murder that has not been committed yet!

The Doctor is up for a challenge to discover which member of the hospital’s staff or a patient could be the victim or the murderer. While Lieutenant-Colonel Brook gives The Doctor a guided tour of the hospital Ace and Hex go off to investigate themselves - during which they get the impression that they are being followed - and come to a revelation that the victim could be themselves or even The Doctor…

Seventh Doctor
Seventh Doctor
 Hex goes off to warn The Doctor leaving Ace on her own. She gets talking to Captain Dudgeon and learns of the terrifying, relentless brutality and hopeless waste the Great War is causing.

But the Great War that wages only a few miles away is the least of their concerns as it seems that those in the hospital are not staying there in harmony and some are not pleased about The Doctor and his companions being there. Lieutenant-Colonel Brook and Sergeant Wood are scheming something and Captain Dudgeon, after leaving Ace, confronts a nervous Lance-Corporal Burridge who has blood on his hands. Hex is treated roughly by Sergeant Wood and finds himself being tortured, in the Hate Room, while The Doctor and Ace find a dead rat nailed to their bedroom door and a sleepwalking Private Taylor ranting about the best way to kill the enemy.

 Realising that Hex is missing The Doctor, in the following morning, manages to track him down and frees him. He also deduces that the Hate Room he is in is used for brainwashing - but why? Hex can’t remember how he got there and so The Doctor has a further mystery to solve.



Who is the murderer and who is going to be the victim? Can The Doctor manage to deduce what is going to happen and so prevent it or will he be too late even though he was given advanced warning? What is the real purpose of the Hate Room and why is the hospital being used to instil so much hate in those within its walls? What has been happening at the derelict church in the middle of No Man’s Land and what, or who, will Ace and Hex find there, when they go to investigate, or will they be killed by flying bullets or toxic gas? More importantly with the orders seeming to be authentic who knows that The Doctor is going to arrive at the hospital and so can send them to him?

Then the murder takes place but who did it? The Doctor has to tread very carefully to uncover who is responsible as well as to solve the mystery of what is going on before the simmering hate and anger at Charnage hospital erupts into a frenzy of violence and he is accused as a spy and shot in front of a firing squad?

The Doctor finds that the enemy may be closer to home and that he may not be able to prevent a bloodbath…
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  • Featuring the Seventh Doctor, Ace and Hex.
  • Serial Number: 7WE
  • Number of Episodes: 4
  • Cover Length: 145 minutes
  • Episode Lengths: 1 = 33'11", 2 = 27'47", 3 = 35'33", 4 = 35'25"
  • Total Story Length: 131'56"
  • This story takes place after "Survival" and follows on from "The Settling".
  • Early Title: "We Are the Dead".
  • Cover Illustration: Simon Holub
  • Recorded: 29th and 30th July 2006
  • Recording Location: The Moat Studios
  • Released: November 2006
  • ISBN: 1-84435-178-5

On the Back Cover:

 It is 1917 and The Doctor, Hex and Ace find themselves in a military hospital in northern France. But the terrifying, relentless brutality of the Great War that wages only a few miles away is the least of their concerns.

The travellers become metaphysical detectives when The Doctor receives orders to investigate a murder. A murder that has yet to be committed...

 Who will be the victim? Who will be the murderer? What is the real purpose of the Hate Room? Can The Doctor solve the mystery before the simmering hate and anger at Charnage hospital erupts in to a frenzy of violence?


On the Inside Cover:

 I’m told my paternal grandfather was shot in the shoulder during the First World War. A few inches further down and to the side and...

 Sometimes writing feels more like archaeology than therapy. It certainly seems strangely appropriate that, just as my most recent novel, Sleep of Reason, took me back to my very first attempt to write a Doctor Who novel, and to some of my experiences as a teenager, so No Man’s Land should reach back to my first, stumbling attempts at fiction, and to a nascent, horrified interest in human evil.

The roots of No Man’s Land go all the way back to 1984, to a short story I wrote for a self-published fanzine. It was going to be about werewolf creatures who were drawn to the First World War like sadistic bees to poppies, but I soon concluded that there was terror enough in the Great War without adding aliens into the mix. A simple story of ordinary soldiers, trying their best to live through a nightmare.

I don’t seem to have come very far in 22 years.

I’m still more interested in emotion than entertainment, in people than polemics - the sort of people you find, fictionalised, in Siegfried Sassoon’s masterful Memoirs of an Infantry Officer. The sort of people I hope you will encounter in No Man’s Land.

I’d like to thank Gary Russell for giving me an opportunity to write a proper Doctor Who script after all these years, and, with the pardoning of soldiers executed during the First World War once more in the news, I humbly dedicate this work to all who died in, and survived, that conflict.

Martin Day,
November 2005

Martin Day has written six novels, eight factual books, over six hours of television, and lots of other things. His big secret is that he once had a letter (about Doctor Who, of course) read out on Noel Edmond’s Multi-Coloured Swap Shop. He’s known Gary Russell for almost 25 years, and now feels very, very old.

Who's Who?

The Seventh Doctor

First television appearance: "Time and the Rani"
First chronological Big Finish audio appearance: "Red"

 He has been exploring the universe for hundreds of years. He fights injustice. He defeats evil. He helps people. The Doctor and Ace have had many adventures now - and they’ve recently been joined by Hex, a youthful former nurse from the twenty-first century. In this regeneration, The Doctor can be impish, devious even, but also greatly compassionate; whimsy and melancholy do battle inside this persona, but his friends know they can always rely on him...


First television appearance: "Dragonfire"
First chronological Big Finish audio appearance: "The Fearmonger"

 Dorothy McShane, who likes to be known as Ace, was a schoolgirl living in Perivale West London when she was transported far across time and space to the Iceworld colony by a time storm Here, she met The Doctor and since then the pair have travelled the universe together, fighting evils and righting wrongs. Over time, a close bond has developed between the two, and Ace has recently begun developing skills of leadership, cunning and guile to equal that of her mentor himself…


First chronological Big Finish audio appearance: "The Harvest"

 Thomas Hector Schofield discovered at quite an early age that the name 'Hector' wasn’t exactly designed to give him the easiest of times at a Merseyside school, so he began referring to himself as 'Hex'. Moving down from to London to complete his medical training, Hex began working as a staff nurse at St Gart's Hospital in Shoreditch. There he encountered Ace and The Doctor, helped them fight off a Cyber incursion and ended up aboard the TARDIS. Since joining them, Hex has seen enough monsters, hostile situations and aliens to last most people a lifetime. But clearly not him...

The Cast Gallery:

The Seventh Doctor - Played by Sylvester McCoy

‘Metaphysical detectives, investigating a murder that exists only as a thought, an impulse… a desire. It could be nothing, of course. Some strange little coincidence, a temporal glitch… A mere meaningless mistake in the footnote of crime.’

 Ace - Played by Sophie Aldred

‘All I’m saying is, if we blunder in, we’re likely to make things worse. God, I really am turning into The Doctor!’

 Hex - Played by Philip Oliver

‘Oh, don’t be daft! I’m a civilian, how can I desert? Besides, when I arrived here I was unconscious. I don’t even know the way back…

 Lieutenant-Colonel Brook - Played by Michael Cochrane

‘If the two of you can find a way to get rid of the girl and the boy, It’ll be much easier for me to deal with The Doctor.’

 Sergeant Wood - Played by Rob Dixon

‘I’d be surprised if more than one word in ten makes it back. Never can see the point myself. Your family don’t understand a word you say, and your wife’s probably too busy fooling around.’

 Private Taylor - Played by Oliver Mellor

‘I was getting the noses of the men, Don’t blame ‘em, either, wanting to see the back of me – after what happened last night.’

 Captain Dudgeon - Played by Rupert Wickham

‘When you see the young German soldiers and realise that they’re just like us, you find yourself wondering – is what we’re doing right, or can it be that we’re both equally in the wrong? Whose side is God on?’

 Lance-Corporal Burridge - Played by Ian Hayles

‘You want to go wandering about in No Man’s Land, that’s your funeral.’


Full Cast List:

The Doctor Sylvester McCoy
Ace Sophie Aldred
Hex Philip Olivier
Private Dixon Michael Adams
Lieutenant-Colonel Brook Michael Cochrane
Sergeant Wood Rob Dixon
Lance-Corporal Burridge Ian Hayles
Private Taylor Oliver Mellor
Captain Dudgeon Rupert Wickham

The Production Team:

Writer Martin Day
Director John Ainsworth
Sound/Music Simon Robinson
Theme Music David Darlington
Story Editor Alan Barnes
Producers Gary Russell, Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery
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