People Roundup

Doctors

John Hurt as The Doctor in The Day of The DoctorJohn Hurt has been voted joint first in the annual Beard of the Year Awards, alongside choirmaster Gareth Malone and England rugby player Geoff Parling. The trio came top of the poll from the Beard Liberation Front, which attracted over 10000 votes. [Telegraph, 28 Dec 2013]

David Tennant commented that he currently doesn’t know whether he’ll be involved in the second series of Chris Chibnall‘s Broadchurch: “We don’t know where the characters are going. We don’t know the story he is telling. Some people say they know they are in it. I am not sure they do, though. I think some might get a shock. I was dying of a heart attack, so I don’t know how able Alec Hardy will be to do any more crimefighting, so we will have to see.” [Radio 4, via Mirror, 28 Dec 2013]

Speaking of which, a Radio Times poll saw critics name Tennant’s show the best TV show of 2013. Tim Glandfield, RadiotTimes.com editor, said: “The death of event TV has been greatly exaggerated. Broadchurch drew the nation into a collective hysteria every Monday night for eight weeks, as who killed Danny Latimer became the talking point in the press, pubs, front rooms and factories up and down the country. A brilliant piece of homegrown drama with an exquisite cast of actors, Broadchurch is a fantastic example of British TV at its very best.”. [Radio Times, 27 Dec 2013]

Peter Capaldi has been put forward as a candidate for the position of Rector at the University of Glasgow, though the actor himself has yet to agree to run for election. A petition was started by politics student Fiona Duncan, who said: “I’m trying to show that there is a demand from the student body for him to stand before contacting him. It would be great to have someone from the arts representing Glasgow students.” [Times Higher Education, 25 Dec 2013]

Peter Cushing is considered the number one thespian from Kent, according to a county news source. Correspondent Chris Britcher observed: “He lived for much of his life in Whitstable, moving there in 1959, in a seafront home he shared with his wife. A popular figure about the town, he would love to sit and paint the view along the beach. Cushing’s View today marks the spot he so adored, while the town’s museum has a permanent section devoted to him.”. The “alternative” Doctor is not alone, however, with Tom Baker also listed at number eight: “He remains, for a whole generation, their favourite Doctor Who – and is destined to be synonymous with the character at the very height of its fame. Mr Baker lived for many years in Boughton Monchelsea, near Maidstone, and now resides in Tunbridge Wells. He is a familiar sight in and around the town.” [Kent News, 24 Dec 2013]

Writers

Neil Gaiman has been named the winner of the 2013 Book of the Year Award, with his book The Ocean At The End Of The Lane winning the public vote in the National Book Awards. The writer commented: “I’ve never written a book before that was so close to my own heart: a story about memory and magic and the fear and danger of being a child. I wasn’t sure that anyone else would like it. “I’m amazed and thrilled that so many other people have read it, loved it, and made their friends read it too.” [Radio Times, 28 Dec 2013]

A new publication in the Time Trips series of e-books, The Death Pit is now out, and its setting of Arbroath in Scotland has attracted local interest. Dundee-born author Alison Kennedy said: “I know Arbroath a bit. I lived there for a few months and in Carnoustie for about a year. It just seemed a suitable place. I wanted it to be in a small town.” Writing for the fourth Doctor, she said: “I was a fan of the series as a child, and I am now. When it’s at its best it hasn’t changed – it’s very resilient. It was a very happy editorial experience.” [Evening Telegraph, The Courier, 28 Dec 2013]