New Guinness World Record for Doctor WhoBookmark and Share

Sunday, 27 November 2022 - Reported by Marcus
William Russell as Ian Chesterton (Credit: BBC)

Guinness World Records have confirmed that Doctor Who has earned another entry in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Since the screening of The Power of the Doctor last month, the record for the longest gap between TV appearances of an actor playing a television character is now held by William Russell, for his portrayal of First Doctor companion Ian Chesterton.

Russell played Chesterton in the first episode of Doctor Who in 1963. He stayed with the series for two years, appearing in 77 episodes. His last appearance was in The Planet of Decision, the final episode of The Chase, broadcast on the 26th June 1965.

Although the character has been mentioned in the series since then, Ian has not actually appeared in the series until he was seen in the last few minutes of The Power of the Doctor, screened on 23rd October 2022.

The gap between appearances is therefore 57 years 120 days.

The previous record holder was Philip Lowrie who returned to the role of Dennis Tanner in Coronation Street after 43 years.

Doctor Who already holds a number of Guinness World Records including the most consecutive sci-fi TV episodes ever, with 871 episodes so far.

In 2016 Peter Capaldi accepted the Guinness World Records title for the Largest Gathering of People Dressed as Doctor Who Characters, at the La Mole Comic Con in Mexico City.

In 2013 the simultaneous broadcast of The Day of the Doctor to 94 countries was named the world's largest-ever simulcast of a TV drama.

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