Remembering Derrick Sherwin – A Whose Who
There are times when the inspirational inspire from a distance, those tireless creators with massive imaginations and abundant ideas who give the actors and actresses their script, so they can portray those imaginative ideas, and Derrick Sherwin was no exception. If Derrick Sherwin can be thanked and remembered for one thing and one thing only, he created the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, or U.N.I.T and its amiably leader, Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart. I am, of course, referring to Doctor Who and the positive influence that U.N.I.T had on the Doctor Who stories when it first appeared in 1968 in The Invasion serial and the growing bond between U.N.I.T and the Troughton and Pertwee Doctor’s primarily, although U.N.I.T had its final appearance in the original Doctor Who series in the McCoy serial, Battlefield in 1989. And to cap it all, if U.N.I.T wasn’t enough, he’s also credited as the creator of The Timelords which as any passionate Doctor Who fan would know, is the backbone of Doctor Who’s history and what regulates the character
Derrick Sherwin was very proud of what he achieved writing for Doctor Who and he was there as a producer during the transition from Black and White to Colour.
Apart from being a talented script-writer, Derrick was also an actor in theatre, films and television, but none of that has had as bigger impact on sci-fi fans as his work on Doctor Who. The sad thing is that the newer generations of Doctor Who fans will never really appreciate what Derrick Sherwin did for the Doctor Who legacy but I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t have worried about it, his views and opinions made it onto the commentaries of his stories on DVD.
After a long illness Derrick Sherwin passed away on 17th October 2018 aged 82 years old.
Pamela Susan Shoop