We are sad to report the death of editor and publisher Richard Henwood, the 'grandfather' of the Target Doctor Who novelization range, who died on the morning of the 28th May, following a massive stroke on the 25th May. As David Howe tells Outpost Gallifrey: "Henwood enjoyed a prestigious career as an editor and published, specialising in children's books and it was in 1972 that he was head-hunted from Scholastic by Ralph Stokes and Brian Miles, who were setting up a children's imprint at their own publishing house, the Universal-Tandem publishing company. Henwood was pleased with the challenge and started looking for books for this new imprint, named Target. Among the books he found were the original 1960's hardbacks of three Doctor Who titles: Doctor Who in an exciting Adventure with the Daleks, The Crusaders and The Zarbi.
"æI was ushered into the boardroom of Frederick Muller in Tottenham Court Road by the rights manager,' Henwood recalled when talking about the origins of the range for a series of articles for Doctor Who Magazine, 'and arranged on the table were some twenty books. One swift glance told me that I was almost certainly wasting my time, but my eyes strayed back to a trio of tired looking hardbacks in the centre. ôDoctor Whoàö I mused aloud to myself. ôOh I donÆt know àö the fact is (IÆm ashamed to say) that back then I didnÆt. As a matter of deliberate choice we had no television at home, and I had only seen a few minutes of the odd episode of Doctor Who in someone elseÆsÆ house. However, I said, ôIÆll take an option on that trio, if I may.ö æ ôThey didnÆt sell very well into the libraries when we published them in 1964,ö said the rights manager, ôà but Armada paperbacked one as an experiment. ItÆs out of print now.ö æBack at Gloucester Road I showed my morningÆs ôcatchö to Brian Miles. Without hesitation, he exclaimed ôDoctor Who à theyÆll sell!ö'
"Miles was correct, and Henwood's decision to republish the Doctor Who novelisations resulted in an astonishing range of books which is still with us today, and which, to Richard's great delight, was entered in the Guinness Book of Records as the longest series of books based around a lead character. When I spoke to him for the history of Target series, I found him enthusiastic and keen to talk about his involvement in the range. He was still writing, despite having retired some years earlier, and was still having a great time doing what he loved. His death is a sad loss as he was what every writer wants: an editor who loved books and publishing with a passion."
The attached photo at right (click for a larger version) shows writer Terrance Dicks, Richard Henwood, Doctor Who Producer and writer Barry Letts and editor Elizabeth Godfray at a reunion meal in 2000. (Special thanks to David Howe for sharing his memories with us; the photo is copyright to David Howe and may not be reproduced without permission.)