This past week I went to Cardiff as I had never been there and wanted to go somewhere new. I also thought that as the Doctor Who experience was closing down soon, it was the perfect time to go and see what Cardiff had to offer. I’ll go onto the Doctor Who Experience another time but this time I will talk about the Ianto Jones Shrine. It was something that I had heard about before and thought that whilst I visiting Cardiff and the Doctor Who Experience, I would visit the shrine which even appears on Google Earth.
Only in the Doctor Who Universe would fans set up and shrine to a deceased character. I had booked a room at the nearby Travelodge and walked down past that the Millennium Centre and the Welsh Assembly, round the corner and there it is. The Ianto Shrine which I imagine has seen better days but even faded pictures and rain soaked letters doesn’t detract from what an impressive sight it is. I say it again, only in the Universe of Doctor Who would a deceased character have a shrine dedicated to them. There are a couple of things that I liked whilst browsing the different tributes on there. First is the amount there. I didn’t count them but there must be hundreds on there and that’s not including the ones hidden and the ones that have fallen off over the years. Secondly is a simple little plaque that was placed besides the shrine which explains what this shrine is and why its there.
It must be quite strange to anyone who hasn’t seen Doctor Who or Torchwood why this is significant and again only in the Doctor Who Universe could this happen. It put a smile on my face when I read it and thought that it was a nice touch to what was a shrine that has seen better days. I think if you are a fan of Torchwood or a fan of Doctor Who in general then you should definitely visit this. You could easily spend several minutes looking at all the little notes and gifts that have been placed there.
Some of them are quite nice things added to it and it doesn’t take long to see just how much people loved Ianto even if until fairly recently I didn’t understand.
And then there are some which seem a bit……odd.
I know it might seem a bit odd but the thought was there and I suppose there could have been worse things to find.
Where the plaque is placed is the door which is the exterior door to lead into the Hub. There was a small part of me that was curious exactly what was behind it. I obviously knew that it wasn’t going to lead to the Hub and the Ianto wasn’t going to behind a desk making coffee but it was a bit of a disappointment that this is what I saw. Below the picture was loads of rubbish that had been washed up but at least I know now instead of spending the rest of my life wondering.
I think if I ever visit Cardiff again then I will definitely visit the shrine to see if it is a) still there and b) if anything new has been added to it.