A SCIENCE fiction movie set in Tynedale – telling the story of how Dr Who fans lived through the Covid lockdown – has wowed a major film festival.

Reeltime Pictures boss Keith Barnfather – a founding member of the Doctor Who Appreciation Society – used the Museum of Classic Sci-fi in Allendale as a backdrop for Lockdown: A Doctor Who Fan's Survival Guide.

And it proved a firm favourite at the film festival in Brooklyn, New York.

Museum owner Neil Cole, 51, of Corbridge, is the owner of The Classic Museum of Sci-fi and he was approached by Keith Barnfather an independent film producer.

Neil said: "My museum details a chronological history of classic era Doctor Who and features one of the largest, comprehensive independent collections of original props, costumes and production material from the original show (currently in the world) and that are also on permanent display all year round to the public.

"It attracted the attention of independent filmmakers Reeltime Pictures who have had a nearly 40-year association with Doctor Who producing sci-fi documentaries and original drama.

"They were keen to use the museum as the backdrop for their latest release: 'Lockdown: A Doctor Who Fan's Survival Guide.

"Keith approached me explaining that the film would look at how Doctor Who fans had used their love of the show to help them through the pandemic and lockdown."

Neil moved from Corbridge to Allendale to create his museum 'The Museum of Classic Sci' in 2015, as he knew that currently there was nowhere in the country displaying and presenting Doctor Who props – and he has used lockdown to improve it.

Mr Cole added: "During the filming, I found myself a new role as well as host of Doctor Who star Sophie Aldred, who played Doctor Who companion 'Ace' between 1987-89 and acted as presenter.

"I became the production assistant on the film and responsible for the behind-the-scenes photography that formed the special features on the DVD release of the film. Viewers can see my 'behind the scenes' photography that formed the special features on the DVD release of the film.

"For the museum it was an amazing opportunity to reach fans of Doctor Who worldwide and also continue to promote Allendale and the Allen Valleys as a tourist destination to help the local economy.

"We know people are now travelling a long way to visit our unique museum."

Neil told how festival-goers gave the film a good reception.

He said: "There was tremendous fondness for its sense of nostalgia and creativity.

"The sci-fi and Doctor Who audience is truly international and extremely popular – fans will travel and make substantial efforts to visit or watch something about their passion.

"This was something I have been very keen to impress upon Northumberland County Council – the sci-fi museum really brings in a completely fresh stream of visitors to our region."

For anyone who would like to see the film, it is now available on DVD from Reeltime Pictures and can be purchased at https//timetraveltv.com

Mr Cole added: "Reeltime Pictures are planning a further documentary that will be focusing upon the museum itself.

"Sophie Aldred and Keith Barnfather are returning to Allendale on November 13 to film new material and meet and greet fans.

"Sophie will be signing copies of a new original artwork I am currently making especially for the day."

Ticket information will be out soon and can be found at: https://www.museumofclassicsci-fi.com/