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GHANA is a small republic located in West Africa. It had been a British colony, before gaining its independence in 1957. It is a member of the British Commonwealth.


Country Number (19?) 1966? FIRST WAVE
Region Africa Commonwealth
Television commenced 1965
Colour System 1980 PAL
Population 1966 7 million
TV Sets 1966 1,000
Language/s English

Television Stations / Channels

Ghana began its television service in 1954. Colour transmissions began in 1980 using the PAL colour broadcast system. In 1965 there was just one television station:

In 1964/65, only one thousand televisions sets were registered for a population of more than seven million.


We are not sure exactly when Doctor Who commenced on GTV, but Ghana was – we think – the 19th country (the sixth in Africa) to broadcast Doctor Who (Selling Doctor Who)

BBC Records

The Stanmark Productions Ltd advertisement from 1966, identifies Ghana as one of the sixteen countries screening Doctor Who in that year.

Doctor Who - The Seventies records sale of "(5)" stories. Doctor Who - The Handbook identifies these as being the first five William Hartnell stories.

DWM also identifies the same five stories.

Stories bought and broadcast

Five stories, 26 episodes:

"Dr Who", 11 July 1966 – is this episode one?
A An Unearthly Child 4
B The Daleks 7
C Inside the Spaceship 2
D Marco Polo 7
E The Keys of Marinus 6

Ghana therefore bought just the first Group of William Hartnell stories. (Bermuda and Canada were two other countries to 'drop' the series after the first five stories.)

The programme was supplied as 16mm black and white film prints.


The first known Ghanaian airdate for Doctor Who was on Monday, 11 July 1966, at 9.30pm. The subsequent timeslots varied between 8.45pm and 9.00pm. The last listed episode was six weeks later, on 15 August 1966.

BUT - it is not known whether these dates are at the beginning, the middle or the end of the 26 episode run. If they were the first, and the series aired without a break, then it ended in early 1967. If it is at the end of the run, then the series could have commenced in late December 1965...

TV listings

"Dr Who", 1 August 1966
Airdates in Ghana

TV listings have been obtained from the newspaper Ghana Daily Graphic.

The programmes was billed as Dr Who or "Dr Who", with punctuation.

The newspaper listings were very sporadic prior to July 1966, and from 22 August disappeared altogether, so only six episodes of Doctor Who have been identified – however we are not sure if these five listings cover the start, in the middle, or towards the end of the full 26 episode / week run.

The newspapers for the four weeks prior to 11 July are held, but on 13 June, the timeslot is taken with coverage of a sports event; for both 20 and 27 June, the listings stop at 7.30pm; and the 4 July issue was missing.

But the main reason for our uncertainty with the start date lies in the fact that the 26 April 1966 Daily Mirror interview with William Hartnell ("Oh, the Agony of being Dr Who") says "Canadians, Maltese and Ghanaians all send him fan-mail..." So, if fans in Ghana were writing to him as early as April 1966, then the series must have started long before 11 July 1966... (And with registered television sets numbering only 1,000 in 1965, there could only have been a very small number of letters coming from Ghana...)

Of course, the 26 episodes could have aired in two parts – the first half (13 episodes?) in late 1965 / early 1966, which prompted the fan-mail to Hartnell, with the second half by July 1966.

On that basis, our Airdates table is noted accordingly.

(See Peter Haining's Doctor Who – The Key to Time for the text from the Daily Mirror article; another version of the same article can be found on our profile page for Zambia.)

Ghana in Doctor Who

  • In episode four of The Chase, the box office outside the Frankenstein’s House of Horror exhibit declares that it is part of the 1996 "Festival of Ghana".