Delia Derbyshire was born in 1937 and joined the BBC Radiophonic Workshop in 1960. She was the first qualified musician there (she had a degree in Mathematics and Music; earlier employees were oriented towards sound effects for radio drama). Although marginalized and uncredited during the time she worked there, Delia has retrospectively been hailed as a pioneer of electronic music. She is best known for creating the theme tune for Doctor Who, based on a rough compositional idea by Ron Grainer. Other well-known works include "Blue Veils, Golden Sands" and "the Delian Mode".
Working with primitive equipment such as manual oscillators, tape decks, and improvised mixers, much of her work was done by tape manipulation (music concrete) and additive synthesis. In addition to commercial work for the BBC, and music created by herself and Brian Hodgson as the BBC under pseudonyms, she also worked in the Kaleidophon and Unit Delta Plus studios with a variety of musicians, including Peter Zinovieff of EMS, Stockhausen, Pink Floyd and the Beatles. As a member of the group White Noise, she contributed to the album "An Electric Storm".
Disillusioned with the BBC attitude to electronic music, she left the music field in 1975. Towards the end of her life, in the mid 1990s, she once again started to work on electronic collaborations with artists such as Sonic Boom. She died in 2001. Following her death, a cache of early tape recordings of electronic music was found in her flat. It has yet to be published.