Ian Chesterton

Dr Who was first discovered by this nosy teacher who followed a pupil back to her home in a tatty old police phone box.

At last a schoolmaster who is truly a hero!

You bet, little did Ian Chesterton realise what was in store when he followed Susan Foreman of 5B back to her home in Totter's Lane.

Hold on, you said he was a hero, not some perv who stalks his own pupils.

No. This was back in 1963. Teachers could do what they liked in those days and, besides, Ian was curious about The Doctor, Susan's mysterious grandfather, particularly when he found the two of them were living together in an old police telephone box.

So what did he do? Alert social services?

No. He forced his way into the police box which turned out to be a Tardis that promptly took off to the year 100,000 BC where Ian met the tribe of Gom who had lost the ability to make fire.

I see. And what did our Ian do? A spot of remedial teaching?

Of course. He was head of science at Colehill after all. Next thing though he's off thousands of years into the future where he discovers that the Daleks, a bunch of guys in electric wheelchairs with plungers for arms, are trying to exterminate their Scandinavian pacifist neighbours by releasing radiation on to the planet Skaro. Ever the environmentalist, Ian rallies the blond guys and defeats the Daleks before zooming off again to meet Marco Polo in China and then being knighted by Richard the Lionheart.

And did he ever get back to Colehill secondary modern?

Oh yes. After his second battle with the Daleks in 2164 Ian was returned to Earth by The Doctor where he resumed his career in teaching.

The head had kept his job open for 200 years?

Well no, you see the doctor cleverly arranged to land the Tardis back one second before Ian's time-travelling adventures began.

Clever. So there's no proof Ian was ever away fighting Daleks and teaching cavemen how to make fire?

None at all.

So presumably Ian kept schtum about his battles across the time-space continuum.

Well, I imagine the occasional anecdote did slip out. You know, the way teachers like to personalise lessons: "Actually I remember when I met Richard the Lionheart..." But I think he would be careful not to say too much. After all, he would be looking at a headship in five years time, early retirement in 1980 and an OBE in 82.

How could he be so sure?

He had already been there don't forget.

Adrian Mourby

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