This really is shaping up to be an exciting year for Doctor Who fans, as it's been reported that the sci-fi series's bosses are planning a brand new spin-off show with Jemma Redgrave at its helm, as head of scientific research Kate Lethbridge-Stewart.


It's a role that Redgrave has played since 2012, but in this new Torchwood-style series based on UNIT — the Unified Intelligence Taskforce — she will reportedly be taking the lead.

The fictional military organisation has appeared in Doctor Who, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures but could very well be getting a proper offshoot of its own.

The organisation was first introduced in the long-running sci-fi show back in 1968 and its purpose is to investigate and combat paranormal and extraterrestrial threats to Earth. When approached by for confirmation, the BBC declined to comment on the rumours.

Jemma Redgrave as Kate Lethbridge-Stewart in Doctor Who season 13 standing wearing a suit, with a screen showing the UNIT logo in the background
Jemma Redgrave as Kate Lethbridge-Stewart in Doctor Who. BBC

Redgrave, who stars as the UNIT boss and daughter of classic series character Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, will also be returning in Ncuti Gatwa's first season along with Aneurin Barnard's new character.

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The rumours come after Torchwood writer Phil Ford called for a comeback of the Doctor Who spin-off under Russell T Davies's second reign.

Speaking to ahead of the release of his new Target book based on his 2009 episode The Waters of Mars, Ford said: "I've always wanted to see more done with UNIT. I’ve always thought there’s stuff we could do with UNIT there."

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He continued: "And, of course, I think there’s every case for bringing back a version of Torchwood. But the thing about Doctor Who is the universe is so huge over all these years. Over 60 years, there’s so many places you could go to to develop spin-offs. But I honestly have no idea what is going on in the great man’s mind so we’ll have to wait and find out."

When previously asked if he think Torchwood could make a return to our screens, Ford added: "I think there’s every chance. Even if it was going back in time to an earlier iteration of Torchwood, which in fact we did do in the show. But absolutely, I don’t see why we couldn’t do that. It’s science fiction, it’s Doctor Who, you could do all sorts of things — as I’m sure will happen!"

Well, if the news is true then this "new stage" of Doctor Who continues to look brighter than ever, as Davies previously teased. On the new distribution deal with Disney Plus, he said: "I thought – with no criticism whatsoever towards the people who were running it at the time, because they were running it within the BBC's measures – it was time for the next stage for Doctor Who."

He added: "Those spin-offs declined when I left, and I can see why. And I very much left after 2008, when the money became scarce. I think that's fair enough for the public service broadcaster that the money is spent on other things."

Doctor Who is available to stream on BBC iPlayer with episodes of the classic series also available on BritBox – you can sign up for a 7-day free trial here.

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