I’ve always been fascinated by places. The locations that have been used in television programmes and films have often been significant factors in days out, short trips and holidays. Sometimes it’s been planned, sometimes it’s been coincidence and sometimes it’s be precognisant!
In the sci-fi fan community I’ve met and know people who will travel far and wide to meet their heroes and grab an autograph and picture. I’ve been known to travel to the other side of the planet to walk in the footsteps of hobbits and wizards.
There’s something quite fascinating about being the exact same spot as my heroes. While I have met actors from my favourite shows and paid money for a scribble on a picture and done the awkward production line photo shoot…I know they’re just that; actors who share the face of someone I’ve admired and enjoyed watching on screen.
So why collect locations like other people collect autographs?
I’ve been giving a lot of thought to that and wonder if it’s because of the freedom of imagination. You go see a TV/film person and you have so much invested in the character they’ve portrayed…and no matter how ‘on form’ they are and welcoming…they’re not them, they can’t be them and they’re probably been nice to hundreds of people that day.
A building, a street and beach can be invested with as much imagination and fan devotion and they don’t have to react to you. They come alive purely though your imagination and that’s quite magical. A road in Cardiff is just a normal road but if you remember that’s where you’ve seen a blue police box materialise on a corner, or cybermen stomp past…well that’s as close as you’re going to get to that fantastic world you’ve seen on your screen.