The literary Dalek of Edinburgh Central Library

With Doctor Who’s fiftieth anniversary almost upon us what better time to find out a bit more about Central Library’s pet Dalek.

The Dalek’s many guises have been amusing and confusing visitors to the lending department for several years now. Here is his tribute to Robert Louis Stevenson’s masterpiece:

Dr Jekyll and Mr Dalek

We caught up with John and Lesley from the lending library to find out more about their resident exterminator.

So what is a Dalek (in fancy dress) doing in the lending library?

It all started a few years back. We got the Dalek (and his less celebrated cyberman sidekick) to promote the Edinburgh Science Festival. We liked the Dalek so much we decided to keep him, and started dressing him up in literary-themed costumes. Like the  Doctor, the Dalek has gone through one or two ‘regenerations’ – because like the rest of us he can get a bit deflated from time to time.

What reaction have you had to the Dalek?

The Dalek is definitely a cult hero. We’ve had lots of people getting their photo taken with the Dalek, and thanks to the power of Facebook he’s built up an international following.

Count Dalekula

Where do the ideas for his costumes come from?

Staff, visitors, anyone. Usually he’s dressed up as a literary character (Dickens seems to be a recurring favourite) but sometimes we’ll do something related to current affairs (like with the Jubilee Dalek). Finding the right props can be difficult but we are starting to build up quite an extensive wardrobe.

What was your favourite Dalek get-up?

The Dalek with the Dragon Tattoo. We don’t actually have a picture of this incarnation – so if anyone out there has we’d love to see it. Another personal favourite was Dalek of Green Gables.

Dalek of Green Gables

Which literary character would you like to see the Dalek dressed up as? Leave a comment below.


2 thoughts on “The literary Dalek of Edinburgh Central Library

  1. Dalek Quixote: with appropriate headgear and a sword, exterminating windmills…
    Dalek Lama: with a red robe, glasses and prayer beads, exterminating…wait!…he’s a Dalek of peace!
    Dalek Dick: don’t worry, it’s a whale! With a Starbuck’s coffee and a harpoon (the coffee chain was named after one of the characters)
    Such joy as I cast my eyes over my real bookshelf stacked with imaginary titles –
    Zen and the Art of Dalek Maintenance
    Dalek’s Progress
    Breakfast at Dalek’s
    Sophie’s Dalek
    The Satanic Daleks
    The Old Man and the Dalek
    To Kill a Dalek
    Our Mutual Dalek
    Captain Correlli’s Dalek
    The Dalek in the Rye
    Love in the Time of Daleks
    Eat, Pray, EXTERMINATE!!!!!
    … … …
    Righto, back to work!


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