Royal Geographical Society, Fourth Operational Corps
Place of origin:
Anne Travers, Alun Travers
First seen in:
The Abominable Snowmen
Main voice actor:
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Professor Edward Travers CBE was a British anthropologist and explorer. His life was largely defined by his numerous encounters with the Great Intelligence, each of which brought great change.
After his first encounter with the Intelligence, Travers spent several years displaced from his native time. During this time, he faced the Intelligence again and met H. G. Wells.
In the end, both Travers and his daughter Anne were killed fighting the Intelligence.
Edward was born to Lyndon Travers. (One Cold Step) He was a twin, and his brother’s name was Vincent. (The Dreamer’s Lament)
Trip to Tibet
In either the 1920s (Yonder… The Yeti) or 1935, Travers decided to set out on an expedition to prove the existence of Yeti in order to prove Professor Walters, his old rival at the Royal Geographical Society, wrong. After gaining the financial support of a “Fleet Street editor” and getting John Angus Mackay to agree to accompany him to Tibet, Travers began a long journey from London to the Himalayas. (Doctor Who and the Abominable Snowmen)
One night after Travers and Mackay arrived in the Himalayas, their camp was attacked by Robot Yeti and Mackay was killed. Travers found refuge at the Det-Sen Monastery. When the Second Doctor, Jamie McCrimmon, and Victoria Waterfield arrived at the monastery shortly afterwards, Travers initially suspected that they were the culprits for the attack on his camp, but he eventually came to trust them and aided in defeating the Great Intelligence. (The Abominable Snowmen)
Immediately after The Doctor left, Travers followed what he believed to be a real Yeti into a cave and discovered an invasion force of robot yeti led by Jemba-Wa. He overheard the Intelligence giving them instructions to invade London and New York City and was pulled forward in time along with the yeti to 1965, but was knocked unconscious during the trip. (The Creatures in the Cave, Times Squared)
Displaced in time
After making sure that the Det-Sen Monastery was safe, Travers began a months-long journey across Asia and Europe to get to London before the Yeti, having many “strange adventures” and “chance encounters” along the way.
His voyage has seemingly reached an end in London, but after spying on his future self and his future daughter in St James’s Park and his future son teaching at the University of Oxford Travers realised that he couldn’t remain in London without having to worry about disrupting the future. He went to New York City and established himself under the alias “Ernest Ebon”.
For four years, Travers ran Ebon Books while trying to prepare New York for the Intelligence. When signs of the Intelligence began appearing in the city, Travers directed detective Paul Dawson and Lieutenant Adrienne Kramer to them. In October 1969, the Intelligence finally launched its attack and Travers worked with Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart to defeat it once more. After this, Jemba-Wa attempted to transport Travers through time and space back to 1935 Tibet. He felt as if he was torn in two during the journey. Upon his return, memories of his adventures in time vanished from his mind. (Times Squared, Night of the Intelligence)
While returning from 1969, Travers found himself arriving on an alternative version of Earth, alongside HG Wells, and experienced a variation of The War of the Worlds, having been dragged there by the Timelash of Karfel. The two men escaped that version of Earth with the help of a kontron crystal held by Wells and the one within a ring Travers wore, and continued their travels together. (Travers & Wells)
Ordinary life & World War II
Travers brought back one of the robot Yeti used by the Intelligence, but money problems eventually forced him to sell it to Julius Silverstein for his private museum — though Travers kept the Yeti’s control sphere. (The Web of Fear)
Travers later married Margaret Goff. He became quite enamoured with eccentric Goffs, a family with whom the Travers shared a lot of bad blood. It was hoped their marriage would heal some wound, but instead he distanced himself from his own family, including his brother. They lost touch and never spoke again, to the point that Vincent’s children did not inform Travers of the death of his brother during the late 1960s. (The Dreamer’s Lament). Margaret and he had a son, Alun, in 1936, and in 1938 a daughter, Anne. His wife passed away when Anne was very young. As a result, during the 1940s, Travers often left his children with his brother-in-law, Sebastian Goff, and his wife, while he did secret work for the British military arm, the Fourth Operational Corps. (One Cold Step) He was brought into the Corps in 1941 by Tobias Kinsella. (Night of the Intelligence)
In the 1960s, Travers met postgraduate student James Rafferty, and took him into his confidence regarding a Yeti control sphere. (The Dimension Riders)
Working with Lethbridge-Stewart
An older Travers cowers before a robot Yeti during the London Event. (The Web of Fear)
Travers eventually succeeded in reactivating one of the Yeti’s control spheres, which led to the Intelligence attacking London. He and Anne assisted The Doctor and the army task force led by Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart in defeating the Intelligence once more. (The Web of Fear)
In April 1969, Travers went on an expedition to the Arctic Circle with his daughter. (One Cold Step, The Schizoid Earth)
In May 1969, Travers was kidnapped by Leslie Johnston, who attempted to use him to control one of the Robot Yeti. He was freed by Lethbridge Stewart and Ian Gilmore. (The Dogs of War)
In July 1969, Travers met with Anne to watch Apollo 11 land on the the Moon, but he fell asleep just prior to the landing. (Moon Blink)
Following his kidnapping by Johnston, Travers began to suffer memory issues, mistaking Ann for his deceased wife. In October 1969, Anne voiced her fear to Sally Wright that her father was suffering from dementia. (Times Squared, The Lost Skin)
The results of the tests were inconclusive. In late December 1969, Travers returned to Tibet, his intention being to meet with the monks of Det-Sen, but he never got that far before he was kidnapped by agents of General Gore. Gore plugged him to a machine beneath the Vault, intending to use his connection to the Great Intelligence. Fortunately, Thomni had already guided Travers onto the astral plane, and while his body was consumed by the Intelligence, his mind remained on the astral plane. He was briefly visited by Anne, and said goodbye to her, and explained about his new memory of his travels in time from 1935 to 1965. He also explained that when returning to 1935, he felt like he was torn in two. (Night of the Intelligence) It took Anne some time to accept that her father was dead, and it wasn’t until the end of March 1969 that Travers was officially declared dead and a funeral was held for him. (The Dreamer’s Lament)
Four years after the London Event, The Doctor tried to contact Travers again, but learned from Isobel Watkins that he and Anne had gone to spend a year in the United States. (The Invasion) While visiting the astral plane in 1970, Anne witnessed a scene from this time, which showed her father and herself in America working with Major Kramer in setting up the US section of UNIT, although her father looked a good thirty odd years younger than the current Travers of 1970. (Night of the Intelligence)
In 1974, his mind damaged by his experiences in the London Event, Travers fell under the care of his great nephew, Reece Goff, and was enlisted to help the Counter Measures Group when the Great Intelligence resurfaced. With the help of Toby Kinsella, who had also been touched by the Intelligence during the London Event, he was able to defeat The Intelligence and trapped it on the astral plane once again. As a result he was able to claim back that part of his mind which had been stolen by the Great Intelligence, and took up a new post at a secret facility in Northumberland. (Time of the Intelligence)
Travers spent years trying to learn all he could about the Intelligence, even researching at the Library of St John the Beheaded. His reputation was ruined by Ashley Chapel. (Millennial Rites)
1980s and 1990s
According to one account, Travers died on 25 December 1980 after spending his last few years living in isolation in Tibet. His reanimated corpse was used as a host for the Great Intelligence in 1995, posing as the chancellor of New World University, as part of its plan to conquer Earth by infecting the global network of computers. His reanimated corpse was used as a host for the Great Intelligence in 1995, posing as the chancellor of New World University, as part of its plan to conquer Earth by infecting the global network of computers. (Downtime)
According to another account, he was once again visiting America with Anne in January 1990. (The Enfolded Time)
In the Inferno Earth, Edward Travers died in an avalanche while searching for Yetis in 1935. (The Schizoid Earth)
In Alastair Lethbridge-Stewart’s home reality, Edward Travers used Nikola Tesla’s time machine in 1945 to escape with Alastair to Inferno Earth; however, Travers died upon arriving. (The Schizoid Earth)