In what looks set to be the best 50th birthday present fans could imagine, missing episodes of Doctor Who will be made available for sale to the public this week.
BBC Worldwide will put the previously lost episodes from different stories – both believed to be from the Patrick Troughton era – for sale on digital platforms such as iTunes from Wednesday, RadioTimes.com understands.
They are believed to originate from a haul discovered in Africa and have been digitally remastered for sale, although exact details remain sketchy.
A BBC Worldwide spokesman refused to officially confirm the discovery or the “speculation” around further missing episodes.
It is understood that other episodes have also been found, although it is not yet known whether these will be made available.
The existence of a cache of lost Doctor Who episodes has long been rumoured, although in June the BBC suggested that no tapes existed.
Asked by RadioTimes.com if there were around 90 missing episodes from the 1960s a BBC statement said: “There are always rumours and speculation about Doctor Who missing episodes being discovered – however we cannot confirm any new finds.”
A spokeswoman added: “We can’t confirm because it’s not true, as far as I’m aware.”
BBC Worldwide has confirmed it will syndicate the 50th anniversary episode, The Day of the Doctor, simultaneously to more than 75 countries across the world on 23 November.
Originally the BBC had scheduled a Wednesday release but now sources confirm that the date is likely to be later this week.
A reason has not been given, but sources are adamant that the release will be this week.