Cradley Heath pupils have Doctor Who experience

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Pupils at Ormiston Forge Academy in Cradley Heath this week welcomed a special visitor from the world of Doctor Who.

Nicholas Briggs plays the voice of the Daleks, Cybermen and other characters in the BBC TV series dropped in on the academy to work with English and Science students. Nick has recently released a BBC fiction book called The Dalek Generation. It stars the current Doctor Matt Smith.

The morning started with a question and answers session hosted by the Head of English, Dave Jenks, and was attended by over 50 students. During this session Nick judged a short story competition and awarded a signed copy of his book to 2 winners: Katie Monkton and Natasha Chifamba, both year 9 students. They will also go on a trip to London later in the year to attend a recording session for an audio episode of Doctor Who.

After donating a copy of his book to the school library and signing over 100 autographs, for students and staff, he moved on to science and judged a competition where students had designed nanobots. Winners Hamza Mahmood and Zara Ali, both year 9 students, received a signed copy of Nick’s book too. He said, “I was delighted to come and visit an academy where the students are bright, creative and very welcoming. These young people are our future writers, directors and actors and it is important we support their efforts.”

Nick is also Executive Producer of Big Finish, a company that produces audio-dramas, where he also directs, produces, acts and writes. In late 2013 the BBC will show a docudrama depicting the creation and early days of Doctor Who, called An Adventure in Space and Time, to be shown as part of the programme’s fiftieth anniversary celebrations. Nick has a cameo role in the drama playing actor Peter Hawkins, who was the original voice of the Daleks in 1963.

Principal Andrew Burns said, “It was a pleasure to meet such a multi-talented man. Nick was able to show students that with passion and dedication they can achieve their dreams. I’m very grateful to Nick for giving up his time and inspiring our students.”

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Ormiston Forge Academy, Wrights Lane, Cradley Heath, West Midlands, B64 6QU. Tel: 01384 566 598.