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20 characters who could return for Coronation Street's 60th anniversary

SM Entertainment profiles 20 former Coronation Street characters who could return for the soap's milestone 60th anniversary this December.

This December the world's longest-running soap Coronation Street celebrates 60 years on the air. One character, Ken Barlow, stands tall among all others, having appeared since the very first episode, and is certain to be front and centre when the milestone is reached.

Corrie has a long-standing tradition of delving into its rich history and bringing back former characters to the cobbles and the 60th presents the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Here, we profile 20 former characters who could conceivably return for the occasion.

Martin Platt on Coronation Street© ITV

Martin Platt (Sean Wilson, 1985-2005, 2018)

The only one of Gail's FIVE husbands to still be alive, Martin left Weatherfield with his new girlfriend in 2005. He made a brief reappearance in 2018 in the aftermath of son David's rape before leaving for a new life in New Zealand. With David going off the rails again, could now be the time for Martin's return?

Curly Watts on Coronation Street© ITV

Curly Watts (Kevin Kennedy, 1983-2003)

A firm favourite on the cobbles for 20 years, Jack and Vera's former lodger Curly left the street with second wife Emma and their young son in 2003 - three years after his divorce from Raquel. Actor Kevin Kennedy has repeatedly said that he is keen to reprise the role but a comeback has yet to materialise.

Mavis Wilton on Coronation Street© ITV

Mavis Wilton (Thelma Barlow, 1971-97)

One of the most unlikely comebacks on our list but still technically a possibility. Thelma Barlow quit her role as worrywart Mavis Wilton in 1997, months after the character's husband Derek was killed off. Rita's best friend, she moved to the Lake District to run a guest house and still receives regular visits from her former partner-in-crime.

Ken Morley stars as Reg Holdsworth in Coronation Street© ITV

Reg Holdsworth (Ken Morley, 1989-95)

Part of a comedy double act with Curly, supermarket supremo Reg fled from the street in 1995 after doing the dirty on his wife Maureen and getting another woman pregnant. The character was last seen in a 2010 straight-to-DVD spinoff in which it was revealed that he now works for Curly at a medieval-themed tourist attraction.

Emily Bishop on Coronation Street© ITV

Emily Bishop (Eileen Derbyshire, 1961-2016, 2019)

The longest-serving female character on Corrie, Emily left Weatherfield to go travelling in 2016 when actress Eileen Derbyshire decided to take what was described at the time as "a sabbatical". Emily has since returned to the UK but not Coronation Street, although she did make a brief cameo via Skype last October to wish Ken happy birthday.

Spider Nugent on Coronation Street© ITV

Spider Nugent (Martin Hancock, 1997-2000, 2001, 2003)

The nephew of Emily, Spider arrived on the street in 1997 and was every inch the OG echo-warrior (think the '90s equivalent of an Extinction Rebellion activist). Spider struck up a relationship with Toyah but broke her heart in 2000 by deciding to leave for India on a whim. He last appeared in 2003 to rekindle his relationship with Toyah and the two left for a new life in London, although they eventually split again. Corrie boss Iain MacLeod recently revealed that he has more storylines in mind for Toyah - could Spider return to cause trouble for her and Imran?

Jim McDonald on Coronation treet© ITV

Jim McDonald (Charles Lawson, 1989–2000, 2003–05, 2007–11, 2014, 2018)

It seems that Liz's estranged ex-husband Jim will never quite be able to leave the street, having appeared multiple times since his original departure (straight to Weatherfield nick) in 2000. His most recent appearance came in 2018 as part of a sick plot to convince Liz that their baby daughter who died nearly 30 years earlier was in fact alive due to a hospital mixup. Liz is leaving the cobbles this summer but there are still plenty of connections on the street - not least Steve and newly-discovered granddaughter Emma - for Jim to exploit.

Andy McDonald on Coronation Street© ITV

Andy McDonald (Nicholas Cochrane, 1989-97, 2000, 2004, 2009)

Steve's twin brother Andy was last seen in 2009 to watch his sibling get hitched (at that point, his fourth marriage). The more academic and sensible of the duo, as he grew up and matured Andy provided much-needed stability for the McDonald clan.

Becky McDonald on Coronation Street© ITV

Becky McDonald (Katherine Kelly, 2006-12)

Ex-offender Becky moved to the street in 2006, being taken in and cared for by the Croppers before starting a whirlwind relationship with Steve, eventually marrying him (at the second attempt). The couple struggled to have a child of their own and in a bizarre twist paid to adopt Becky's half-sister Kylie's son Max. Predictably the pair split up and Becky moved to Barbados with a new boyfriend.

Janice Battersby on Coronation Street© ITV

Janice Battersby (Vicky Entwistle, 1997-2011)

Mother to Leanne and Toyah - as well as long-suffering ex-wife to Les - Janice was a staple on the street for 14 years and was last seen in 2011 after Vicky Entwistle took the "agonising" decision to quit. Janice is occasionally mentioned by her daughters, but with her grandson Oliver now facing serious health problems, could this be the right time for her to return?

Fiona Middleton on Coronation Street© ITV

Fiona Middleton (Angela Griffin, 1992-98, 2019)

Hairdresser Fiona moved to Weatherfield in 1992, initially as an assistant to Denise, before buying the salon herself. During her time on the cobbles, Fiona had an on-off relationship with Steve - interspersed with a one-night stand with his dad Jim - but eventually snapped and left after he slept with her best friend Maxine. Last year Fiona made a brief cameo after it was revealed that Emma was her hitherto-secret daughter by Steve.

Natalie Barnes in Coronation Street© ITV

Natalie Barnes (Denise Welch, 1997-2000)

Natalie wasted no time making her mark in Weatherfield upon her arrival in 1997, taking over the running of the garage and starting an affair with Kevin, temporarily breaking up his and Sally's marriage. She then moved on to Des and they got married but their union was cut short when he died of a heart attack. Natalie then had a stint as landlady of the Rovers but left for a new life in the Cotswolds in 2000.

Wendi Peters as Cilla Battersby-Brown in Coronation Street© ITV

Cilla Battersby-Brown (Wendi Peters, 2003-07, 2014)

Mother to Fiz and Chesney, serial scam artist Cilla arrived on the street and almost immediately embarked on a relationship with Les, much to the annoyance of his estranged wife Janice. After securing a windfall when an elderly man she befriended died, Cilla fled for Las Vegas. She returned briefly in 2014 to reveal that she had osteoporosis but has not been seen since - although actress Wendi Peters has recently admitted that she would return for the right storyline.

Lawrence and James Cunningham on Coronation Street© ITV

Lawrence and James Cunningham (Linus Roache and James Roache, 2010-11)

Lawrence is Ken's oldest son, whom he only learned about in 2010 - Corrie's 50th anniversary - after a discovery of a lost letter from his first girlfriend Susan (from 1961!). Ken subsequently met Lawrence for the first time, as well as Lawrence's gay son James, but things soon turned sour after Ken discovered that Lawrence had a problem with James's sexuality. Both Lawrence and James were played by actor Bill Roache's real-life sons.

Stella Price on Coronation Street© ITV

Stella Price (Michelle Collins, 2011-14)

Thirteen years after her last appearance as Cindy Beale in EastEnders, Michelle Collins joined the elite band of actors to appear in both major UK soaps when she signed up for Corrie as new Rovers landlady Stella. The feisty mother of established character Eva was soon revealed to be the biological mother of Leanne after a past relationship with Les. During her time on the show Stella had a relationship with Jason, 19 years her junior, before deciding to leave for the US. Stella is now said to live in the South of France, where she has been joined by Eva and her grandchild Susie.

Raquel Watts on Coronation Street© ITV

Raquel Watts (Sarah Lancashire, 1991-96, 2000)

One of the most popular characters ever to grace the cobbles, ditsy Raquel worked as a barmaid at the Rovers and was one of Bet's closest allies. She became involved in a love triangle with Des and Curly, eventually agreeing to become Mrs Watts (at the second attempt). Predictably things didn't work out for the couple and within a year she had dumped Curly and jetted off to Kuala Lumpur. Unfortunately for fans, Sarah Lancashire has insisted that she will never return to the show that paved the way for her to become one of the UK's most established actors.

Jamie Armstrong on Coronation Street© ITV

Jamie Armstrong (Joe Gilgun, 1994-97)

Potentially considered a random choice for our list, Jamie appeared on Corrie in 1994 as the son of Tricia, a future girlfriend of Curly and lodger at the iconic No.1 Coronation Street. After leaving the show as a child actor, Joe Gilgun went on to form a successful career in the business and currently plays the lead in Sky's popular comedy Brassic. As for his on-screen mother, a return for Tracy Brabin is unlikely in the near future as she now serves as MP for the Batley and Spen constituency in West Yorkshire.

Shelley Unwin on Coronation Street© ITV

Shelley Unwin (Sally Lindsay, 2001-06)

Introduced in 2001 as a new barmaid at The Rovers, strong-willed Shelley had two of the most memorable storylines on Corrie in the early noughties, marrying bigamist Peter and then getting involved in an abusive relationship with rotten apple Charlie Stubbs. Shelley's mother Bev became a much-loved character in her own right and most recently appeared in 2015 to announce the tragic death of Deirdre.

Julie Goodyear as Bet Lynch in Coronation Street© ITV

Bet Lynch (Julie Goodyear, 1966, 1970-95, 2002-03)

One of the show's most iconic characters ever, Bet is surely top of the list of potential returnees for the milestone anniversary. The former Rovers landlady is one of the defining characters in the show's 60-year history, appearing continuously from 1970 to 1995. Julie Goodyear made a brief, ill-fated return to the soap in 2002 and is now being tipped for one last hurrah later this year.

Ivan Cheveski on Coronation Street© ITV

Ivan Cheveski (Ernst Walder, 1960-63, 1966-67)

Granted, this is more unlikely than the return of Mavis but we couldn't resist including Ivan. Other than Ken Barlow, Ivan - aka actor Ernst Walder - is the only other original 1960 Corrie cast member who is still alive both in real life and on the show. Walder is now 92 and last had a credited role in 1990 but an appearance in some form could help amplify the magnitude of an already-momentous occasion.

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