Louis has been a Doctor Fan since childhood (Picture: YouTube/Louis Moorhouse Music)
A blind Doctor Who fan is raising money to create tactile books with the aim of making the sci-fi series more accessible for people who are blind and partially sighted, receiving support from Doctor Who star Sir Derek Jacobi.
Louis Moorhouse, a 19-year-old student from Bradford, became completely blind when he was 18 months after suffering from neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer.
Since he was a young child, Louis has been a huge fan of Doctor Who. However, as he explained on his fundraising page: ‘I have yet to fully meet the weird and wonderful characters, aliens, monsters and devices from the show because I can’t see them.’
When he was five years old, the music production student was introduced to Living Paintings, a company that provides blind and partially sighted people with ‘touch to see’ books.
Louis reached out to the Living Paintings with the idea of creating Doctor Who-themed tactile books, receiving approval from the Doctor Who production to proceed with the project.
However, Living Paintings said that they didn’t have the money to create the books, which is why Louis has taken matters into his own hands to raise the funds.
‘If I could sum up what I think is the most important thing about my campaign I would ask a sighted person to just imagine – close your eyes and now imagine you can’t open them again,’ Louis said.
‘This is how it is and now you want to read a book or watch Doctor Who. How are you going to do that? How important is reading a book to you? As a sighted person how would you feel if that was taken away from you and you couldn’t read anymore?’
Louis continued, explaining the significance of understanding what the creatures and characters from Doctor Who tales look like.
‘Then you discover Living Paintings special Touch to See books are full of characters you’ve heard about and imagined all the time, they’ve been on TV, you’ve listened to the audio books, you may have had the books read to you and you never quite understood what they looked like and now, because of Living Paintings you do,’ he said.
Sir Derek, who played The Master in Doctor Who, shared a message of support for Louis, which he shared on Twitter.
‘Louis, I think your idea is excellent,’ the actor said. ‘Having played The Master in the TV series Doctor Who, I just love the idea of blind and partially sighted children and young people to be able to enjoy the spectacle of the show as sighted people do.’
Liz Davies, publishing manager at Living Paintings, said that ‘to have the possibility of creating the worlds only tactile and audio book series about Doctor Who for blind people is incredibly exciting’.
‘The universe of Doctor Who is an immensely visual extravaganza that we will capture and share with blind people.
‘Through evocative tactile pictures coupled with atmospheric and descriptive audio guides, plus music and sound effects – we’ll bring the spectacle of Doctor Who to life, hopefully with a little help from some of the Doctors, their companions and adversaries too!’
Liz said that if enough money is raised, Living Paintings plans on writing and producing three tactile book titles that will be sent to youngsters for free.
Louis has currently raised over £5,000 of his £15,000 target. For more information on the campaign and to donate, click here.