Bleeding Cool’s Rich Johnson is reporting that multiple, reliable sources at BBC are confirming the unearthing of many previous thought lost Doctor Who stories. ┬áThese lost episodes are apparently being kept by the BBC for Doctor Who‘s upcoming 50th anniversary.

Back in the day, the BBC didn’t see any real value in saving broadcasts of their shows — including Doctor Who. Many master tapes from the series’ early days were wiped clean as a cost cutting measure in the ’60s. Over the years a few episodes here and there have turned up from old recordings made and kept by fans.

However, if the news of these lost Doctor Who stories┬áproves true, it could be the largest ever discovery of lost Who episodes. Johnson refers to them as lost stories — which means entire story arcs could have been recovered. Particularly from the era of the second doctor,┬áPatrick Troughton. Troughton’s portrayal being a large influence on Matt Smith’s take on The Doctor.

According to Johnson, there was an engineer who worked for broadcasters in Africa who had a habit of recording and hoarding science fiction broadcasts. That may be the source of the recovery of these alleged lost Doctor Who stories.