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Sue Nicholls pays tribute to "truly great actor" Johnny Briggs

Sue Nicholls pays tribute to
© ITV
Coronation Street's Sue Nicholls issues a statement following the death of her beloved former co-star Johnny Briggs.

Coronation Street icon Sue Nicholls has paid tribute to former co-star Johnny Briggs following his death over the weekend at the age of 85.

The actor, who played ruthless businessman Mike Baldwin on the soap for 30 years, passed away after "a long illness" with his family by his side.

Nicholls, 77 - aka Audrey Roberts - was a castmate of Briggs for the majority of that time and in a statement admitted that she had been recently reminded of his talents by watching old episodes on ITV3.

"I am very sad to hear the news," she said. "Johnny was a great friend, I knew him before I started in Coronation Street and he was always great fun to be around.

"I have been watching classic Coronation Street recently and it has brought home to me what a truly great actor he was. He played the part of Mike Baldwin so well that, despite all Mike's ducking and diving, you were always on his side.

"Although he left the show fifteen years ago he will always be part of the Street and its history. I send my love and condolences to his family."

Earlier this year Nicholls also suffered the loss of her husband Mark Eden, who played notorious Corrie villain Alan Bradley in the late '80s.

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Mark Eden as evil Alan Bradley in Coronation Street
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