Worm's Head, Rhossili, Gower

Filming schedule

New Earth: filmed 26 September 2005

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Doctor Who Confidential: Gower

Clip taken from Doctor Who Confidential featuring David Tennant speaking about filming at in Gower for Doctor Who: New Earth.

New Earth

Original BBC One broadcast: Saturday 15 April 2006
Director: James Hawes
Starring: David Tennant as the Doctor

"It may be a long way from Gallafray [sic] to Gower, but that clearly hasn't put off one time-travelling tourist," announced the South Wales Evening Post on Thursday 29 September 2005. "David Tennant, who plays the latest incarnation of the Timelord [sic] from Gallafray [sic], was joined by Billie Piper, who plays companion Rose, on the cliff-tops overlooking the stunning sweep of Rhossili - to the delight of passers-by."

The Worm's Head (from "wurm", a Viking word for dragon) comprises two rocky islands linked to the mainland of the sandy crescent of Rhossili Bay by a narrow causeway, and to each other by a slender piece of rock known as the Devil's Bridge.

This much photographed venue is a landmark of the Gower Peninsula, and provided the basis for the visual effects firm of The Mill to craft the city of New New York as seen by the Doctor and Rose Tyler when they arrived on New Earth in the year five billion and twenty-three.

The venue had been suggested for use by executive producer Russell T Davies, who had also written the script of New Earth, one of the first adventures for the tenth incarnation of the Doctor. Although voted by Country Life as the most beautiful place in the United Kingdom to admire a sunset, there was little for the BBC Wales crew to admire on their one day of recording at the venue in late September 2005.

The coastal area represented the new home of humanity following the destruction of the original Earth in the far future, with the Doctor and Rose arriving in the TARDIS to receive a mysterious summons to a nearby hospital.

But the idyllic nature of the scenes were threatened by bad weather hitting the exposed area, and ultimately a rain storm forced director James Hawes to abandon recording on the concluding TARDIS scene, and reduce some of the dialogue between the Doctor, Rose and 'Chip' - the dying being who now housed the persona of the formerly villainous Cassandra - to a simple voice-over from David Tennant.

Episode synopsis: New Earth

Arriving in the year five billion and twenty-three, the Doctor shows Rose the future of humanity on the world of New Earth in a distant galaxy.

A strange summons to "Ward 26" on the Doctor's psychic paper leads the pair to a hospital in the nearby metropolis of New New York where the feline Sisters of Plentitude minister to the stricken... and hide a dark secret beneath the infirmary.

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  • Region : South west Wales

How to get here

Rhossili is a small village and community on the southwestern tip of the Gower Peninsula.

By car: Leave the M4 at junction 42, taking the A483 towards Swansea. Continue along the A4067 (following signs to Mumbles and South Gower), eventually taking a right onto the B4436. Continue through Kittle, then Pennard and continue along the A4118 and follow signs to Rhossili.

By bus: Take a 118 Gower Explorer from Swansea city centre - check the Swansea City Council website for more information. Or contact Traveline Cymru for public transport information in Wales

By train: The nearest railway station is Swansea. Consider using connecting local bus services for onward travel to Rhossili.

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