All aboard the big red bus – Iris Wildthyme returns to audio

Typical! You wait for ages for a blog post here on and then two come along at once. Much like a bus I suppose, and talking of buses…

OK, enough of the strangulated links, but some news has just broken that I’m very excited about. For the last couple of months, I’ve been working with my long-time writing partner, Mark Wright, and a number of ever-so-talented chaps on a new series of Iris Wildthyme for Big Finish Productions.

In case you don’t know, Iris is the bonkers creation of writer Paul Magrs. She’s a time-travelling ratbag who traverses the cosmos in bright red, pandimensional double-decker bus with her faithful travelling companion, Panda. And yes, in case you’re wondering, Panda really is a panda, albeit one of the sentient, stuffed variety.

David Benson and Katy Manning, aka Panda and Iris
David Benson and Katy Manning, aka Panda and Iris

As you might gather, Iris and Panda’s world is a little odd and we’re very glad to be bringing them back, brought to life by the wonderful Katy Manning (Doctor Who, The Sarah Jane Adventures) and the urbane, erudite David Benson.

I’m currently working on the script for the first story in season three, entitled… well, that’s a secret at the moment, but I can reveal that the other stories in the series will be written by the marvelous Guy Adams and the spectacular George Mann. Once again, Mark is joining me for producing duties.

If you want to find out more about Iris, then head over to the old lush’s wikipedia entry, but in the meantime, here’s the official notice from Big Finish:

Big Finish is pleased to announce that everyone’s favourite transtemporal adventuress, Iris Wildthyme, is to return for new adventures in 2012.

Katy Manning will once again play Iris alongside her faithful companion Panda (David Benson), in three brand new stories written by Cavan Scott, Guy Adams and George Mann.

But as we wait for her time-travelling bus to return, Auntie Iris wants to hear from you, her loyal fans. Every CD of series three will feature a special section where Iris Wildthyme answers your questions in person. And she’s told us that she’ll answer just about anything. Perhaps you’ve a question about one of her amazing exploits, perhaps you want the low-down on a famous person from history, perhaps you even need some help with your love life?

Send your questions in to and Iris will pick her favourites to answer at the end of each adventure. The closing date for questions is June 30th.

As you can see, we’re doing something rather different with this series. We’ve invited Iris fans to send in questions to the great woman herself. We’ll be choosing the best for Katy to answer as Iris on each CD. So if you’ve a burning question you’ve always wanted to ask the great woman, get it into!

Exciting times and places!

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