Summer Of Rockets pays tribute to Michael Pickwoad - Who was he? How did he die?

BBC’s Cold War drama Summer Of Rockets landed on our screens last night (Wednesday, May 22nd).

Viewers were enthralled by the 1950s drama and TV favourite of the year Keeley Hawes‘ engrossing performance.

But at the end of the episode, a dedication was made to Michael Pickwoad leaving viewers curious as to who he was.

So who was Michael Pickwoad? Here is everything you need to know about the show’s production designer…

Pictured: Toby Stephens, production crew on Summer Of Rockets set.

Who was Michael Pickwoad?

Michael Pickwoad was a television production designer.

Born on July 11th, 1945, Michael grew up in Windsor, Berkshire and then attended the elite boarding school Charterhouse.

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Despite obtaining a degree in engineering, he decided to follow in the footsteps of his father – actor William Mervyn – into the world of television and film.

Sadly he passed away on August 27th, 2018 aged just 73. The exact cause of death is unknown, but many colleagues Tweeted that it was “untimely”.

He is survived by wife Vanessa and three daughters Zoe, Katie and Amy.

Michael Pickwoad tribute in Summer Of Rockets

The tribute at the end of episode 1 left viewers questioning his relation to the show.

Unless they had prior knowledge of Michael’s work, it was not mentioned that he was the show’s production designer.

Michael was responsible for the slick and stylish look of the 1950s on the set of Summer Of Rockets.

End of Summer Of Rockets E1.

What else had Michael Pickwoad worked on?

Michael had an extensive career in television and film. Some standout moments from his career included working on Withnail & I!

But his most famous work was as the production designer for Doctor Who between 2010 and 2017.

In an obituary written by Anthony Hayward in The Guardian, he said:

Pickwoad designed everything from Victorian London, Sherwood Forest and Viking villages to the wild west, a cold war submarine and the Orient-Express in space.

And more so that his work helped the “reinvention of the cult sci-fi series.”



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