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The writing deteriorated in the early 1970s and the show risked becoming an anachronism or, worse, a joke. It was Anne, who played my sister Linda. He passed the card to Tony Warren at a long-term story conference. But as a junior writer at Granada, which had only begun broadcasting in the still starchy world of TV in 1956, he grew tired of writing Biggles scripts. Deirdre Anne Barlow (née Hunt, previously Langton and Rachid) is a long-standingfictional character in the UK television ITV Granada soap opera, Coronation Street. It has survived wayward stars, a revolving door of producers, the rise of streaming TV and – in its diamond anniversary year – a global pandemic. As well as humour and big drama, Coronation Street has always upheld the soap tradition of issue-led storylines, which have also multiplied in the modern era. Feared yet respected, Podmore restored Warren’s brand of humour, reviving the Ogdens as a comedic act. My agent said: “Look at this way, it’s only going to run for a few weeks.”. Both women have had more blokes than hotpots. Deirdre felt Ray was taking her for granted, and when Billy Walker returned to Weatherfield in 1974, Deirdre accepted his offer of a date. William Roache: The love triangle had a colossal impact. Both women have had more blokes than hotpots. explains more about how we use your data, and your rights. Deidre's plight was headline news. The Battersbys had been trailed as “the family from hell”, with Danson cast as a wild child. Philip Lowrie (Dennis Tanner 1960-1968, 2011-2014): I remember we were having a coffee break from rehearsing on the Monday when Harry Kershaw came and said: “You’re going out live on Friday at 7pm.” We all fell on the floor because hardly any of us had done television. 6% 2 votes. Kenneth "Ken" Barlow is a fictional character from the British ITV soap opera Coronation Street, played by William Roache.Ken was created by Tony Warren as one of Coronation Street's original characters. Deirdre Barlow 1972 – 2014. While Ken has had quite a few lovers in his time, the love of his life was Deirdre. He said: ‘What do you think of having this gay character?’ And Warren – and I’m not making this up – said: ‘Well, if we do there’s only one queen I want to play him and it’s Antony Cotton.” Then he opened the card. 60 years of Coronation Street. UK's most prolific speed camera issues £5.7m in fines in three years . Fred Elliott 1994 – 2006. Alastair Campbell (Downing Street press secretary 1997-2000): The papers were just going crazy with “Free Deirdre” and I thought: “Sod it, let’s get on this.”. Born in 1977 to parents Deirdre and Ray Langton, Tracy became a Barlow when Ken adopted her in 1986, five years after marrying her mum. 26% 8 votes. In 2005, the Barlows remarried and lived happily ever after. Clive told us during a visit to the set in 2015: “She loved them to pieces. Retirement isn’t something I think about. Within months Coronation Street was broadcast across the regions and became the most-watched show in Britain. Desperate for an outlet for the characters buzzing in his head, Warren begged the producer Harry Elton for a shot. They’d have known if I’d been a stunt double in a wig. 3% 1 vote. Back in Manchester, Warren also absorbed the speech and personalities of gay men at pubs such as Paddy’s Goose. Ken, played by William Roache, was 16 years older, settled in a job at the local newspaper and keen to play dad to little Tracy. Writers have variously tackled suicide, rape, teenage pregnancy, coercive control and revenge porn. William Roache: Those first few years were a golden age. Manchester bombing victim's body identified from Deirdre Barlow tattoo, family reveals. 10% 4 votes. When Deirdre Barlow, then Deirdre Rachid, was jailed for a crime she didn't commit in 1998 it caused national outrage. RAPPER Snoop Dogg is to feature in a Coronation Street storyline that sees him running a stable of psychotic crack whores from above the shop. Deirdre wastes no time chatting up Alan Howard before she knows he is married. Warren, who was 23, was allowed to write 12 episodes – plus a finale in case they bombed. Anne transformed Deirdre from a 17-year-old making a one-off appearance in Weatherfield, to one of TV’s most-loved characters. Les Battersby 1997 – 2007. I went to see the nurse, who told me I’d put two contact lenses in one eye. Deirdre Barlow had been off screen after Kirkbride was give a three-month break by the show's producers. In 2005, a nervous actor and superfan from Lancashire turned up to play a deceitful novelist. Pictures from the career of Anne Kirkbride - Coronation Street's Deirdre Barlow - who has died at the age of 60 after a short illness. I have a picture of Violet Carson on my wall. It’s cutting-edge drama. Antony Cotton: I used to have lunch once a month with Tony at the Midland hotel and he’d tell me about these amazing women he’d written for and who they were based on. When I joined, the greats were all there and it was still practically broadcast live. Betty Turpin (Betty Driver) and Bet Lynch (Julie Goodyear) behind the bar at the Rovers Return. I bought chairs for them all when I left but I don’t suppose they get much use. The son of Jack and Annie Walker had long since fled the cobbles for a more exciting life in London when Deirdre first came on the scene. After six months they were real lovers. 6% 2 votes. In 1990, the now single Deirdre enjoyed the odd romp with handyman Dave Barton. But Deirdre Barlow cheating on Ken with Mike Baldwin brought Team Jen v Team Angie levels of division back in 1983, and started a decades-long feud between the two men. The bus stopped at a pub on the way. 16% 5 votes. And in those days ITV was broken up into regions so it was like doing local radio. William Roache: The fact there isn’t a tight community on the Street today reflects the fact you don’t get streets like that any more. And there were the old battle axes he’d grown up with, but a lot of it was the men who’d been on the scene in the 50s and 60s. Anne Cunningham (Linda Cheveski nee Tanner 1960-1968, 1984): Everyone spoke standard English in television plays in those days, but Granada was ahead of its time and there was this sort of northern vogue. When Jack Bell, the TV editor, got the splash when EastEnders launched, I remember thinking: ‘Why the fuck is this the splash?’, but this was a period when soaps were becoming a really big part of the newspaper diet. Deirdre Barlow feared her baby daughter Tracy was trapped. Nigel Havers (Lewis Archer 2009-2019): Snobbery has always been there, but I think the key to Corrie’s magic is that it has irony and that great sense of humour. In 1981, Ken Barlow’s marriage to Deirdre Langton drew more viewers for ITV than Charles and Diana’s wedding two days later. Tony was bringing it to TV with a cutting edge kitchen-sink drama serial. Deirdre Barlow 1972 – 2014. The Bailey boys ... (from left) Ed (Trevor Michael Georges), Michael (Ryan Russell) and James (Nathan Graham). ... Celebrity and Coronation Street star Beverley Callard has said she will tough it out in Gwrych Castle with the help of Deirdre Barlow's ghost, aka Anne Kirkbride. An evil bully who killed his girlfriend 30 years ago has been jailed for life after strangling his male lover to death. Ken confronts Deirdre about her affair - 1983. Coronation Street behind-the-scenes pics unveil Ken Barlow's actual age; He was just a … You’d have Jean Alexander [who played Hilda Ogden] and Betty Driver [Betty Williams] quilting coat hangers for charity in the green room. But in the 1980s, when the show was challenged for having no gay characters, Tony would say it was camp enough. Norfolk Tools Date Back To 1938. The happy couple wed in 1981, but this time it was Deirdre who would prove to have a roving eye. A new golden era lasted into the 1980s, when audiences would often top 20 million. In the 60 years since the first episode was aired, the soap has gone from kitchen-sink serial to cultural institution. Storylines still make front-page news, sometimes heaping pressure on the show’s stars. Deirdre Anne Barlow (née Hunt, previously Langton and Rachid) is a long-standingfictional character in the UK television ITV Granada soap opera, Coronation Street. Now I’m 88 and am in charge of this wonderful, dysfunctional family that I adore. Above, Anne Kirkbride and William Roache as Ken and Deirdre Barlow. As the nation mourns the passing of Coronation Street legend Anne Kirkbride, we celebrate the  many romances of her beloved character. 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