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Verity Lambert visits the great Tardis in the sky

13/11/2007. Contributed by Jessica Martin

Buy Doctor Who in the USA - or Buy Doctor Who in the UK

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TV Producer Verity Lambert has died aged 71. Lambert was the first producer of Doctor Who in 1963, as well as dark SF series Quatermass. She died on the 44th anniversary of her first ever episode of Doctor Who. Russell T Davies, the current Writer and Executive Producer of Doctor Who, told SFcrowsnest: There are a hundred people in Cardiff working on Doctor Who and millions of viewers, in particular many children, who love the programme that Verity helped create. This is her legacy and we will never forget that.

In her career, she also produced dramas including The Newcomers, Adam Adamant Lives!, Minder and Quatermass. In 1985 Verity formed her own independent television company, Cinema Verity.

She produced the second series of Jonathan Creek and recently completed the second series of BBC One's Love Soup. In January 2002, Lambert was awarded an OBE in recognition of her services to film and television. Shortly before she died it was announced that she was to receive the Working Title Films lifetime achievement award at the 2007 Women In Film And Television Awards.

Jane Tranter, Controller, BBC Fiction, told SFcrowsnest, "Verity was a total one-off. She was a magnificently, madly, inspirationally talented drama producer. During her long and brilliant career there was no form of drama that was beyond her reach and that she didn't excel at. From the early episodes of Doctor Who to the still to be transmitted comedy drama Love Soup, via Widows, Minder, gbh, Eldorado and Jonathan Creek (to name but the tiniest handful of credits) - Verity was a phenomon. She made the television drama genre utterly her own. She was deaf to the notion of compromise and there wasn't an actor, writer, director or television executive she worked with who didn't regard her with admiration, respect and awe. She will be hugely missed but her legacy lives on in the dramas she made, and in the generations of eager young programme-makers she has inspired.

Jon Plowman, Executive Producer, BBC Comedy, added, "Verity was a TV giant. Her career spanned the eras, from first episodes of Doctor Who and Minder through to Jonathan Creek and the forthcoming series of Love Soup. She was extraordinary - very keen to get shows right and to encourage people, as she did for me in my early days. She never held back in her praise and was not jealous of anyone else's success - she enjoyed watching people grow up around her."

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