Nine missing episodes of the TV show Dr Who have been found at the headquarters of New Zealand Cricket.
The lost episodes were found in a box at the bottom of a cabinet at New Zealand Cricket’s Auckland headquarters.
“The tapes were in great condition, considering their age,” said the TV show’s executive producer, Steven Moffat.
“Nobody seems to know what there were doing there, or who put them there, but it’s a stroke of good luck for fans of the show.
“I’m told by New Zealand Cricket that it was a cabinet dedicated to trophies won by the New Zealand men’s team.
“It seems that nobody had opened the trophy cabinet for years.”
The tapes were discovered after building renovators went to move the cabinet.
Workmen found a box covered in dust, and when they opened it they discovered a pile of tapes with the words “Dr Who” printed on them.
Jeffrey Peladon, one of the workmen and a lifelong fan of the show, immediately realised the importance of the discovery.
“I cross-checked the codes on the side of the tapes with an episode list from the internet, and I quickly realised I’d made an amazing discovery,” said Mr Peladon.
“To think that they’d lain undisturbed for all those years, while lovers of the show continued to lament their loss. And all because nobody ever opened that bloody trophy cabinet.
“Not that I needed another reason to be pissed off with the Black Caps.”
Moffat said nine episodes thought long-lost had been recovered from the tapes found in the box.
The tapes date from 1967 and feature the second Doctor, Patrick Troughton.
They include four episodes from the 1967 five-part story The Forecasts of Doom. In that story the Doctor does battle with Treasury officials determined to justify their optimistic economic growth forecasts, and is attacked by a man in a blob suit.
The other five episodes are from the seven-part story The Web of Apathy, in which the Doctor stands for election to his local community board, but runs up against low voter turnout and a group of renegade Cybermen determined to wreck his campaign hoardings.
The discovery has alerted a number of other organisations to the possibility that they may be holding similar treasures.
Sadly, however, there is still absolutely nothing in the All Whites’ trophy cabinet.