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POLAND is in Eastern Europe.


Country Number (N/K) 1990s? / 2002 THIRD WAVE
Region Europe
Television commenced 1953
Colour System 1971 SECAM
Colour System 1995 PAL
Language/s Polish Dubbed or Narrated

Television Stations / Channels

Poland began its television service in 1953. There is one national television broadcaster - Telewizja Polska (TVP1).

Colour transmissions began in 1971 using the SECAM colour broadcast system that was common throughout Europe. TVP changed to the PAL system in 1995.

In Poland, foreign programmes are usually always dubbed, although some programming instead has Polish narration.

Television viewers in Poland also had access to several foreign satellite stations, such as Germany's RTL-Plus (on which Doctor Who aired), and the European FilmNet and Sky One.

By the 2000s, Poland had its own satellite stations. It was on digital station TELE5 (launched on 19 April 2002) that Doktor Who aired 2002 to 2003. (TELE 5 broadcast off the Astra-satellite, orbital position: 19,2° East, 10.832 Ghz, horizontal, 27500 Bytes)


Poland was one of the last countries in Europe – at least ahead of Sweden – to screen the series (see Selling Doctor Who).

In Polish, the series was called Doktor Kto and Doktor Who.

BBC Records

Poland is not mentioned in The Seventies, The Handbook or DWM.

In the Polish version of WikiPedia: (POLISH DOCTOR WHO) it said (the section has since been deleted):

Na początku lat 90. XX w. jedna z prywatnych stacji telewizyjnych wyemitowała kilkanaście odcinków z Tomem Bakerem w roli czwartej inkarnacji Doktora. W 1997 r. TVP1 pokazała film telewizyny BBC Doctor Who z 1996 r.

This translates as:

In the early 1990s, one of the private television stations aired a few episodes with Tom Baker as the fourth incarnation of the Doctor. In 1997, TVP1 showed the 1996 BBC TV Movie "Doctor Who".

(NOTE: The paragraph in question has since been deleted from the Wikipedia page; this may have been done so because of doubt as to whether or not Tom Baker episodes did air on a Polish channel.)

2003 Panopticon Handbook – 40 Fabulous Facts

It is not known what "private station" this is, as no private TV stations are recorded in the 1990 or any subsequent World Radio Television Handbook. (A list of current Polish TV stations – both public and private - can be seen HERE).

Of these, the most likely station to have carried Doctor Who in the early 1990s is the privately-owned commercial station Polonia 1, as it appears to be the only one that was in operation at the time in question, having been launched in March 1993. (And with the novelisations (see below) being published in 1993/1994, it's logical that these would have come out around the same time as the broadcasts.)

An unofficial site by fans of Polonia 1 has quite an extensive online "archive" of material, including lists and examples of daily schedules of the various programmes the station aired over the years (see POLONIA 1, as well as a general Polish TV listings "archive" at POLISH TV LISTINGS), but despite our searching in both sites for references to Doctor Who, Doktor Who or Doktor Kto, none could be found. Of course, not being able to read Polish doesn't exactly help!

One likely scenario is that the "privately-owned" station was in fact one of the many satellite stations that had coverage across most of Europe during the mid-1990s. But the fact that earlier Polish newspapers -- from 1990 and 1993 (see below) -- carried billings for the German satellite station RTL-Plus strongly suggests that the Wikipedia entry is actually referring to those -- except that the episodes that aired featured not Tom Baker but Sylvester McCoy!

Poland is mentioned as having aired the series in the 2003 Panopticon Convention souvenir handbook, under the 40 Fabulous Facts section: "Doctor Who has been shown in 66 countries around the world, from Abu Dhabi and Algeria, to Poland, Qatar, Taiwan and Zimbabwe". (The reference to 66 countries is out slightly – at best count, Polish was nearer the 70th mark...)

The inclusion of Poland in this publication would probably be in relation to the then-recent screenings of Tom Baker stories on the Polish satellite station TELE5, from early 2002 to mid-2003, which oddly enough is not mentioned in the Wikipedia entry... (Unless the Wiki entry reference to "early 1990s" is actually wrong, and they instead mean "early 2000s" in reference to the TELE5 broadcasts...?)


Both of the Peter Cushing Dalek movies have been shown on Poland TV (see Transmission below):

  • "Doktor Who i Dalekowie" ("Dr Who and the Daleks")
  • "Inwazja Daleków na Ziemie" ("Daleks Invasion of Earth")

Stories bought and broadcast

TOM BAKER (1990s?)

Billing for "Doktor Kto" on RTL-Plus in Polish newspaper, Dziennik Lodzki, 14 May 1990
Billing for "Doktor Kto" on RTL-Plus in Polish newspaper, Dziennik Lodzki, 18 June 1990
Billing in Trybuna for RTL screening of "Dr Kto", 3 July 1993

It is not known what Tom Baker stories screened in the 1990s – if any even did. (Since the BBC always seemed to offer new purchasers Baker's first season - starting with Robot – it's likely a selection of those stories were the ones seen.)

As noted above and below, it is more than likely that the broadcasts referred to in Wikipedia were another regional satellite or cable station, most likely being the Sylvester McCoy episodes airing on Germany's RTL-Plus.



TVM The TV Movie 1

TOM BAKER (2000s)

Nine stories, 36 episodes (not in correct story order):

4D Revenge of the Cybermen 4
4E Genesis of the Daleks 6
4F Terror of the Zygons 4
4G Pyramids of Mars 4
4H Planet of Evil 4
4J The Android Invasion 4
4A Robot 4
4B The Sontaran Experiment 2
4C The Ark in Space 4

TELE5 may have purchased the same dubbed episodes that had been used by the other Polish station (if there were earlier broadcasts), plus additional episodes, which were either dubbed into Polish, or broadcast in English but with Polish "narration" voice-over.


First TELE5 listing for "Doktor Who", 20 April 2002
"Doktor Who", episode 7 of 26, 10 August 2002
"Doktor Who", episode 8 of 26, 11 August 2002


  • The first of the two Peter Cushing Dalek movies aired on Saturday, 6 October 1979, at 4.30pm, on station PR I, Studio-2, and the second film on Wednesday, 26 December 1979, at 2.55pm, on PR II.

Tom Baker / Sylvester McCoy?

  • A run of Tom Baker stories may have aired in the early 1990s; possibly 1993/1994, which was when the three novelisations were published.
    • If these did in fact air via a UK or Eurpoean-based satellite or cable channel – such as BBC Prime, Super Channel or on the German station RTL-Plus (which is supported by printed TV listings) -- then the transmissions do not count as being Polish… (and for this reason we have not included a 1990s entry for Poland in the Story Guide list of countries.)


  • The 1996 Paul McGann TV Movie was screened by Filmnet. The sale of the film was reported in issue 235 (October 1996) of the DWAS newsletter Celestial Toyroom. Reportedly, Filmnet had the rights to screen the movie fifteen times!


TELE5 (2002-2003)

Starting from Saturday, 20 April 2002, the Polish satellite station TELE5 commenced a run of 26 Tom Baker episodes, running Saturdays and Sundays at 9.30am. As far as can be determined, this run of episodes consisted of Genesis of the Daleks through to The Android Invasion. The run was cycled through at least three times. For the second run, the times shifted to 8.25, 8.30 or 8.35am. (Episodes 7 and 8 were repeated on 10 and 11 August 2002 – see clippings.)

These episodes aired in Polish, or English but with Polish narration.

At some point in early 2003, the slot changed to weekdays, at 4.40pm, then to 7.00pm by July 2003. It appears that for this 2003 run of episodes, TELE5 aired season 12 only – being 20 episodes covering Robot to Revenge of the Cybermen; there were 10 new episodes not included in the 2002 package. After being cycled through several times, this 20 episode run ended by August 2003.

TV listings

Airdates in Poland

We checked a couple of issues of Dziennik Lodzki – and the only listings for "Doktor Kto" (on 14 May and 18 June 1990, at 10.30am) are for the Monday "repeat" screenings of the German RTL-Plus Sunday episodes starring Sylvester McCoy.

The Polish newspaper Trybuna has also been checked for all of 1990 to 1995; this paper did publish comprehensive TV listings for Polish as well as foreign-based terrestrial, cable and satellite channels. The only listings for "Dr Kto" were also for the German station RTL, which was re-screening Sylvester McCoy stories at the time – see example illustrated above). This supports our belief that the series never aired on a local Polish station in the 1990s: the Wikipedia entry is therefore incorrect, and is actually referring to the German Sylvester McCoy episodes.

The TELE5 screenings summary has been collated from Benjamin F Elliott's online THIS WEEK IN DOCTOR WHO, and from TELE5 LISTINGS. Of note, the 20 April 2002 billing for some reason dates the first serial as 1987.


Polish novelisations

Three of the Target novels were published in Poland, issued by Publishing Empire in 1993-1994:

Poland in Doctor Who