The Crusade


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The Crusade

Serial Code


First Transmitted

27 March 1965

Final Ratings







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Regular Cast

William Hartnell (Dr Who), Jacqueline Hill (Barbara), William Russell (Ian), Maureen O Brien (Vicki)

Guest Cast

John Flint (William des Preaux), Walter Randall (El Akir), Julian Glover (Richard the Lionheart), David Anderson (Reynier de Marun), Bruce Wightman (William de Tornebu), Reg Pritchard (Ben Daheer), Tony Caunter (Thatcher), Roger Avon (Saphadin), Bernard Kay (Saladin), DerekWare (Saracen Warrior), Valentino Musetti (Saracen Warrior), Chris Konyils (Saracen Warrior), Ramond Novak (Saracen Warrior), Anthony Colby (Saracen Warrior), Jean Marsh (Joanna)


Written by David Whittaker
Directed by Douglas Camfield
Produced by Verity Lambert


1 “The Web Planet” 23:57 13 February 1965 13.5m
2 “The Zarbi” 23:20 20 February 1965 12.5m
3 “Escape to Danger” 22:52 27 February 1965 12.5m
4 “Crater of Needles” 25:50 6 March 1965 13.0m
5 “Invasion” 26:04 13 March 1965 12.0m
6 “The Centre” 24:28 20 March 1965 11.5m


The TARDIS arrives in 12th century Palestine where a holy war is in progress between the forces of King Richard the Lionheart and the Saracen ruler Saladin. Barbara is abducted in a Saracen ambush and the Doctor, Ian and Vicki make their way to King Richard’s palace in the city of Jaffa.


  • “The Lion” was found in New Zealand by film collector Bruce Grenville sometime well before 1998 and languished amidst Grenville’s vast 16mm film collection for several years. In 1998, Doctor Who fan Neil Lambess asked if he had any Doctor Who film in his collection. When he answered thad he had something called “The Lion”, Lambess realised he might have a missing episode. He brought his friend Paul Scoones went to Grenville’s farm to videotape the screening, just in case Grenvile had the real episode. After it was determined that Greenville’s print was genuine, he readily agreed to have it sent to the BBC for copying. Scoones therefore shipped it to the BBC Film and Videotape Library, and in 1999 the BBC made a Digi-Beta print of Episode 1, and returned the print to Grenville
  • Telesnaps for this story exist in the hands of private collectors
  • Several enlarged telesnaps also exist for this story.
  • This story was originally entitled The Saracen Hordes and various episodes were made under working titles.
    * Episode 2 (“The Knight of Jaffa”) was made under the working title “Damsel in Distress”
    * Episode 3 (“The Wheel of Fortune”) was made under the working title “Changing Fortunes”
    * Episode 4 (“The Warlords”) was made under the working title “The Knight of Jaffa”
  • William Russell only appears briefly in the third episode in a pre-recorded segment as the actor was on holiday during filming
  • This story has been noted for its non-stereotypical treatment of the two opposing leaders. Saladin (played by Bernard Kay) is portrayed as calculating but compassionate, while King Richard I is portrayed as volatile and at times childish.
  • Order the Crusade via the BBC page
  • Order the Crusade CD via the BBC Audio page
  • * Some footage on Lost In Time DVD which had an archive of the lost Hartnell and Trougton stories.

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