Cosy crimes and gritty sagas by Corrie Blog editor Glenda, published by Headline. Click pic below!

Saturday 12 October 2013

Welcome to Weatherfield-on-sea, our Corrie day in Blackpool

We've just returned from a jolly to Weatherfield-on-sea, or Blackpool if you want to call it by its Sunday name.  We were there at the invitation of ITV for a Coronation Street press day and two of us from the Coronation Street Blog went along armed with our reporter's notebooks and camera to make the most of a very special day.

Before things kicked off indoors at the press event, we were all given a free ride on the new Wallace & Gromit ride at Blackpool Pleasure Beach. I know! How much fun is that?!  Not being a fan of fairground rides that spin, turn, plunge, speed or indeed, move much at all, I was reassured when I turned up at the ride to find we'd be sitting in a slipper.  No fear, then.  With two of your bloggers in the front of the slipper and Jane Reynolds in the rear seat, we set off on a cracking ride.  It was a fun way to start the day.

Safely back indoors after being shifted around on the seafront in a slipper, the event began with a talk from Corrie producer Stuart Blackburn, who welcomed everyone and introduced the day.  We then had a sneak preview of this coming Wednesday's hour-long episode of Coronation Street which, without giving too much away, includes a christening in chaos and some very touching scenes of Roy and Hayley on a day out in Blackpool.  I won't say any more about this episode because I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but let me tell you, you will need a box of tissues close at hand for the Croppers' scenes.  Oh, and you might spot one of our favourite Corrie extras - Jonny G Force in a couple of church scenes!

Stuart Blackburn told us: "Next week is full of heartache, vengeance, betrayal, cat fights, the return of Liz McDonald and a christening like no other. There are two stories driving the episodes that on first glance look totally different. You have the huge scale of the Platt story set against what is an astonishingly beautiful love story of Roy and Hayley. I defy anyone to watch it and not come out sobbing."

We were also given a glimpse at some of Hayley's online diary and a preview of some of the storylines to come over the next few weeks.  I can't say anything about those except to say that even the most hardened journos in the room did a collective intake of breath at one storyline preview.  Oh 'eck.

Anyway, after the screening there was a raffle to win one of five copies of the new Coronation Street book called The Rovers Return: the official Coronation Street companion. Bev Callard (Liz McDonald) drew the raffle and five lucky winners walked away with a copy of this fantastic book.   Written by Tim Randall, it's available here and we'll be running a competition on the Coronation Street Blog very soon in which you can win a copy of the book too.  Keep following us for details of this special competition.

After a ride in a slipper, a few tears at the screening and then the raffle for the book, it was time for lunch and in true Blackpool style we were all fed fish and chips with mushy peas and buttered bread. And very nice it was too.

After lunch it was down to business and interviews with members of the Coronation Street cast.  The first interviews were with Julie Hesmondhalgh and David Neilson (Roy and Hayley Cropper) who talked about filming the Blackpool episode we'll see this Wednesday 16 October.  David Neilson said that when they were filming, there were crowds of people watching them, and he showed us some photos he'd taken on his phone. "It was like being The Beatles," he laughed.  Asked if Roy would end up with another woman after Hayley goes, David joked that he thought that was the reason Liz McDonald had returned, and then he said Roy would probably go out with Sally.  We all laughed and hoped he was joking.    Julie talked about how difficult it was going to be for her to say goodbye to Hayley after playing her for so long.

Julie Hesmondhalgh in Blackool on Corrie press day.
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Then it was the turn of Paula Lane and Jack P Shepherd (Kylie and David) to tell us about baby Lily and the christening. I can't say too much about this but I can reveal that there are two babies, twins, who are playing baby Lily Platt, and surprisingly one of the babies is actually called Lily in real life too.  Jack was asked if he gets recognised a lot by the public and he said he was, yes. In fact, the most surreal time was when he was in a noodle bar in Vietnam and someone asked him if he was David Platt.

Next up were Ben Price and Jane Danson (Nick and Leanne).  Ben was funny and had us laughing when he told us about falling asleep in his hospital/coma scenes. Ben says he has worked with the charity Headway to help understand Nick's brain damage and how it will affect him.  He also said that Nick's condition will be a long-term storyline which could run as long as two years.

Beverley Callard in Blackpool on Corrie press day in Blackpool
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And then finally we had Beverley Callard (Liz McDonald) looking beautiful and much taller than she does on screen.  She confirmed that the tabloid rumours about Liz getting together with Jimi Mistry's character Khalid are not true.  Yes, Liz will be getting a fella and he has just been cast so Beverley hasn't yet met him but said she hoped he was gorgeous - and tall!  Asked if Liz would be wearing the same kind of clothes as she always has done, Beverley said that wardrobe would bring her nice dresses for approval and she'd say yes, she liked them, and then the next time she saw them they'd had their hemlines taken up and the seams taken in - very Liz!

Well, after such a long chat with everyone, it was time to take our leave in a very special way. But the day wasn't over and we were in for a treat with a ride on a vintage Blackpool tram!

The tram transported us all to the Blackpool Tower Ballroom, where we enjoyed a Corrie cream tea while watching the dancing.  

It was a magical end to a very special day.  Thankyou, ITV!

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Anonymous said...

Wow, what a special day! Glad you were able to participate, FN - so many parts of your day I envy!

Tvor said...

Sounds like a wonderful day!

Anonymous said...

How lovely! Real Blackpool treat with Corrie. Thanks for sharing.

bbhilda said...

Sounds like a fabulous day. Just a teeny bit disappointed that we were wrong about why you were all there. I guess it was just a promotion of future storylines?

Regardless, it was a fun way to do it, and a good way to keep the press onside.

Clinkers (David) said...

Eeh! Sounds like a grand day out! Lovely to hear all about it and hope the cream tea was delicious.


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