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Bookmark and Share Alec Wheal 1934 - 2016

5/22/2016 08:51:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The BBC have announced the death former Senior Camera Operator, Alec Wheal, at the age of 81

Alec Wheal worked on at least 159 episodes of Doctor Who, mainly as Senior Camerman, or as it was later known, Camera Supervisor.

The Camera Supervisor led the team of five or six camera operators, during the studio recordings of classic era Doctor Who. The role was important as Studio Camera Operators had only the studio day to absorb the director's camera script and instructions, before recording each Doctor Who episode in the evening.

They would work closely with the Director to make sure the required shots and effects could be recorded during each studio recording session. Each recording had a strict 10pm cut off and any mistakes would lead to shots being missed or expensive overruns.

Alec Wheal led the Camera teams on most Doctor Who stories from Destiny of the Daleks in 1979 right through to The Greatest Show in the Galaxy in 1988.

Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison paid tribute.
As the senior Cameraman, Alec Wheal was the rock of the studio recordings of Doctor Who, both during my time, and throughout the seventies and eighties. We developed an understanding, so that in those moments of panic as the clock ticked round to ten pm the end result was always as good as it was.
As well as Doctor Who, Wheal worked on programmes such as EastEnders, Last of the Summer Wine, Just Good Friends, The Tripods, Black Adder, Grange Hill and Fanny by Gaslight.