These are the type of characters who are ideal for community leadership and committee work and they’re usually the ones that the rest of the characters look up to for guidance. For me, the two characters that have epitomised this archetype of a pillar of the community are Emily Bishop and Alf Roberts.
Since her debut in 1961, Emily has always been willing to help out in the community and has always held a key role in the street goings-on. Be it organising plays and pantomimes with Leonard Swindley in the 1960s, being on the community centre committee with hubby Ernie in the 1970s, organising fetes with Percy Sugden in the 1980s or recently a street carol service, Emily has always been a central figure of the Coronation Street community.
As a councillor and grocer, Alf Roberts served the community in many ways than one. He’d been elected as a councillor in the late 1960s and by the early 1970s he was much respected by the residents. He became the supposed last mayor of Weatherfield of 1973 and Annie Walker was his mayoress. He was very much respected as a councillor and was always there when the residents had a crisis or needed council advice. He remained a councillor until 1987 when he lost his seat to Deirdre Barlow, but regained it in 1991 and stayed until his retirement in 1998, after over thirty years of serving his people. He also served the public behind the shop counter. His links with the Corner Shop dated back to the days when Maggie Clegg was running things but it wasn’t until 1979 that he went behind the counter full time. He joined wife Renee after he retired from the GPO, and inherited the shop after her death in 1980. He would serve the community behind the shop counter until 1994. He was awarded an OBE in 1995 for his services to the community.
There have been other characters over the years that can be labelled pillars of the community. These include Annie Walker, Ena Sharples, Albert Tatlock, Florrie Lindley, Leonard Swindley, Ernest Bishop, Len Fairclough, Ken Barlow, Maggie Clegg, Renee Roberts, Percy Sugden, Rita Tanner, Fred Elliott, Roy and Hayley Cropper.
Norris regards himself as a pillar of the community, but many think he’s the pillock of the community!
Who’s your favourite pillar of the community? Vote below! Voting closes on Monday, 2nd September. And if you haven't yet, you can vote for your favourite Corrie pet here. Voting closes midnight tonight.
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