Wednesday, 14 November 2018

WIN! Christmas on Coronation Street by Maggie Sullivan

We've got five, yes five, copies of the new paperback version of Christmas on Coronation Street by Maggie Sullivan. And we're giving them away!

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning one of these fantastic books is to answer the question below correctly.   Then email your answer to me at with the word CHRISTMAS in your email subject line.

All correct entries will be entered into the draw and five lucky winners will be drawn at random and announced here on the Coronation Street Blog.

Here's your question, good luck!

Q: How much does the paperback book retail at on the Amazon website, in UK pounds?
You'll find the answer here.

Overseas fans can enter this competition.

Deadline for entries is Sunday 25 November 2018 at 5pm.

Entries from Loquax, moneysavingsexpertforum and all other competition entry websites will not be included.

See also: Christmas gifts for Coronation Street fans

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Corrie's mix of comedy and poignancy is back

Guest blog post by Glenn Meads who is on Twitter 
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Corrie has always been great at mixing comedy with genuinely poignant moments. If you think back to one of my favourite couples, Jack and Vera, you would often find Jack talking to his pigeons, whilst Vera was running amok inside. You felt Jack's pain, as he felt lonely even though he was married. Then this couple would patch up their differences and the comedy would continue. Hilda and Stan were the same, she could nag Stan, but if you messed with him, she would have you. And then there was some great comic moments between the two of them as Hilda attempted to be classy, and you would have a tear in your eye, because you saw this character frailties and it touched you, because they just felt so real.

Over the last couple of years, many people have been claiming that Weatherfield had gone down a dark and gloomy path. I never thought this, but I did long for some of the nuance that fans adore. And, guess what?  Producer Ian MacLeod obviously thinks the same, because last night, amid the car crash that was Audrey's award winning speech, and swipes at Claud, was a a really moving tribute to Maria. Feuds in Corrie are great, because they are the foundation of  god soap opera, but then two characters have the history that these two share, the making up is much more interesting that the endless screaming matches.

Tracy Barlow has become so human of late, that even she is starting to take notice. Gone is the panto villain, the humour remains and she still has lines to die for. When Steve mentioned that his dog was constipated, she responded with "You're both still full of it." But, she is determined to hang on to the one friend she has, even though she is responsible for Abi's recent blip.

Then we come to Maureen Lipman's stint as battleaxe, Evelyn Plummer. She arrived like a tornado, sweeping up victims in her path. But, we always knew she would be nursing some heartache. And what is great about the writing here, and the performance here, is that she is a throwback to the great battleaxes of the past. But, far from an imitation, she fits right in. Particularly because Tyrone worships the ground she stomps on! But, the comedy remains - her constant put downs see characters reeling, including the brilliant Jenny Connor.

Phelan was a great addition to the street, and he is missed. But, with his turn as an ugly sister coming soon at the Opera House in Manchester, you can always relive his murderous moments. In the meantime, revel in the fact that Corrie's rougher moments have come out in the wash, and at the moment it is shining like a new pin. Long may it continue!

And, more scenes with Ken and Carla, please!

Guest blog post by Glenn Meads who is on Twitter 

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Corrie's Top 10 Storylines of 2010s - No. 3

Guest blog post from Jade Rainbow who is on Twitter: @MissJE1994
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3. Pat Phelan's Reign Of Terror (2016-2018)

Okay I know he's not to everyone's taste, so just skip my rambling if you're not a Phelan fan, because I could write a whole book about how brilliant I think he is. (Disclaimer here - I'm not a psychopath, I wouldn't be an admirer if he was real, I just appreciate a good old bit of drama.) What I loved about Phelan was that originally he wasn't just your ruthless soap serial killer, he had other layers to him and he did seem to genuinely love some of the people around him. Anyway, he started off (fairly) small, by making Anna Windass sleep with him in order for Owen and Gary to keep their jobs, but he soon progressed to bigger and better things. 

A couple of years later, after Michael uncovered Phelan's scam with Vinny, he tragically suffered a heart attack before he could tell anyone, and Pelan sat back and watched him die. Shortly afterwards, Michael's sort of son Andy makes what would ultimately be the biggest mistake of his life and clobbers Phelan over the head, believing him to be responsible for Michael's death. This led to Phelan blackmailing Andy and eventually smashing his head with a laptop, leaving Andy's girlfriend Steph to leave the country without him. 

Several months later however, it was revealed that Phelan hadn't murdered Andy but had in fact been holding him hostage all this time (best twist EVER!). Phelan then tracked down Vinny, who had conned him out of their scam, and in an episode that got loads of complaints but was actually such an exciting night (why on earth am I currently without a boyfriend?!), Phelan forced Andy to shoot Vinny dead before turning the gun on Andy himself (I can't lie, that was a bit devastating, I was so convinced that Andy would somehow get out alive). 

His long lost daughter Nicola also discovered that she was in fact the result of Phelan's rape of her mother, young Seb was tricked in to handling the gun that had killed Vinny and Andy, Luke realised the truth about Phelan and was promptly blown up (again a brilliant twist which I didn't see coming), and Anna was framed for the attempted murder of Seb and sent to prison. Phelan eventually confessed his crimes to his shocked wife Eileen, who promptly let him fall into the sea, supposedly to his death, but he was actually in hiding, until Gary tracked him down and brought him back to the street (seriously, why would you?). 

Obviously it wasn't long before he broke out (how brilliant was the scene with him roaming the street to Joy Division - Atmosphere?), and went straight to Eileen's where he accidentally shot Nicola before crashing Robert and Michelle's wedding where he shot Michelle. But Anna had secretly been released from prison and she stabbed the evil psycho in his cold dark heart and, knowing his game was up, Phelan pulled the knife out, resulting in a pretty quick death. Anna had got the ultimate revenge, and walked away a free woman, while the street was free of Phelan's evil forever (such a shame). I really tried to do a brief write up on this one but it was so action packed it hasn't really worked out. Sorry about that.

Guest blog post from Jade Rainbow who is on Twitter: @MissJE1994
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Snooker Loopy Peter Barlow

Now that Peter has sold his shares in Underworld, I hope that he does go through with buying and re-launching Weatherfield Snookerhall. Peter Barlow is the perfect man to run a snooker club and I’ll tell you why... WAISTCOATS!

A rogue's gallery of waistcoats

Back in 2014, Rob Donovan said about Peter: “He’s a raging alcoholic… a liar… a bad dresser - I mean he wears waistcoats for crying out loud. He should be at the Crucible playing Ronnie O’Sullivan”.

Peter Barlow at the Crucible playing Ronnie O'Sullivan

I took issue with that at the time and I defended Peter’s fashion sense in my blog, ‘Peter Barlow – a bad dresser?’ As Gareth Southgate demonstrated at this summer’s World Cup, waistcoats are cool. And Peter knew that a long time ago.

But it seems Peter actually is into snooker. Yeah, that’s right – snooker loopy nuts, is he! When Peter first noticed the closed club on Victoria Street a couple of months ago, he was disappointed that he couldn’t take Simon in and teach him to play. 

As much as he loves snooker, Peter might not be the best teacher. You see, when he was in the Big House, Peter got a reputation for cheating at snooker so he did.  Here’s ‘The Landlord’, Jim McDonald to catch ourselves on:

I’m a big snooker fan myself and I hope the club does become a regular feature in Corrie. Can anyone think what Peter might call his new venture? How about ‘Barlow’s Billiards’? Or ‘Peter’s Pool Hall’? Personally, I’d go with ‘Snooker Loopy’ and play Chas & Dave on repeat. I do quite like ‘Weatherfield Snookerhall’ though. It's old school.

Well, I hope we’ll soon find out whatever name is decided on. But what I really want to know is this… does Peter Barlow wear waistcoats because he likes snooker, or does Peter Barlow like snooker because he wears waistcoats? I’m in Manchester today. If I see him, I’ll ask.

By Martin Leay
Twitter @mpleay
Corrie Blogs @

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Preview of tonight's Coronation Street - Weds 14 Nov

SEB SEEKS REVENGE Tracy visits Abi in hospital and, unable to bear the guilt any longer, confesses that she was the one who sabotaged the car and stole the laptop. Abi throws her out of the hospital and having been discharged is told by the social worker that her contact with the twins is suspended because of her dugs relapse. When Abi says that she is going to put the twins up for adoption Seb sees red and lets himself into the florist and grabs a broom. Seb trashes the place but is stopped by Abi who has heard the commotion. Ken spots her and assumes she is responsible for the damage.
PETER AND LEANNE ARE AT LOGGERHEADS Peter is appalled when Leanne tells him that she and Nick are getting back together. Simon returns from a careers day to announce he wants to join the Navy, once more Peter and Leanne disagree over his plans.
SINEAD IS LOOKING FOR ALTERNATIVES Sinead goes for a homeopathic massage where she meets a young mum to be who talks to her about the fact she too has cancer but she has stopped having chemo in favour of homeopathy and a strict adapted diet. Sinead is keen to hear more.
ELSEWHERE Audrey is furious that a video of her drunken speech has gone viral. Maria pays Audrey a visit with a proposition. They agree they don’t trust Claudia and she wants to go into business with Audrey instead.


TRACY HAS A NEW ENEMY As the police arrive Seb runs into the back room and in a bid to protect Seb, Abi grabs cash from the till. They arrest Abi on suspicion of theft and criminal damage. Tracy tells Abi she won’t press charges but it is too late Abi is in court on Friday. At the pub Seb has a go at Tracy, saying she is the reason Abi is having to put the twins up for adoption.
SIMON’S PLANS DIVIDE PETER AND LEANNE Simon tells Leanne that he only needs his dad’s signature to join the Navy, Leanne asks Gary to speak to Simon but it only hardens his resolve. Nick comforts Leanne as she struggles with the prospect of Simon joining the Navy.
SINEAD DECIDES ON AN ALTERNATIVE Sinead invites her new friend Steff for a brew and they talk about the alternatives to chemo. Sinead doesn’t mention anything to Daniel.
ELSEWHERE Maria breaks the news to Claudia that she’s pulling out of their salon deal and going into partnership with Audrey instead. Clearly put out, Claudia explains that she won’t be able to refund Rita’s investment as the money was spent in good faith.

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Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Sally Dynevor interview: Sally v Duncan in court

How has Sally been coping in prison in the run up to her trial?

She’s had her real ups and downs, she got beaten up, she hates it in there! To not be respected anymore, to have been the mayor and then end up in prison, the whole thing is a nightmare, but the thing that’s keeping her going is that she’s knows she is innocent so she believes she will  get out. She believes in the British justice system, she’s a law abiding and honest citizen and I think she thinks that once this goes to trial and they hear her side of the story, she can tell them the truth about what really happened and it’ll all be fine! 

Do you think Sally’s ambitious nature and the fact that she was the Mayor leads her to believe she can change the prison system? 

Sally isn’t one to sit back in prison, in the weeks leading up to the trial she’s been rallying the prisoners, she wants to fight for prisoners rights! She wants to start a skills swap scheme, Jodie teachers her yoga and she teaches Jodie how to sew and as women we all help one another to make the best of a really bad situation!

At this point prison is all very new to her and she looks around her and thinks that it’s awful and not what she expected so she wants to try and make it a better place for women with yoga and meditation! The whole idea is lovely but quite naive!

Sally gets a friend in prison when Abi arrives, how does Abi’s arrival make her feel?

On the street Abi and Sally were never friendly, but it is great to have a friendly face in there. Abi is brilliant for Sally because she’s been in prison before, she knows how it all works and she helps Sally by talking to her about what she’s been through and she reassures her that Tim loves her, and Sally does the same to her by reassuring her about Seb. Sally would usually look down her nose at Abi, due to the drugs especially so she really wouldn’t be sympathetic, but in prison those barriers that Sally might have had, have been knocked over and some of her prejudices have been lost. Life isn’t what she thought it really was, Abi is in fact a really lovely person who has had a bad time! 

Whilst in prison, Sally doesn’t know that Gina has been developing feelings for Tim. How do you think she would feel if she knew that this was going on?

She would be shocked, but not shocked that she found Tim attractive as she found Kevin attractive previously, but the fact that she could do that to Sally when she is in such a desperate situation, that is what would shock her. Fiz’s realisation about Gina’s feelings causes her to tell Geoff, who warns Tim to watch himself; this spurs Gina to panic and then try to throw Tim off the sent by starting dating, where she meets up with Duncan. So this could go one way or the other! 

If Sally knew Gina was meeting up with Duncan would she assume this is something that could only be helpful or would she be worried?

She would feel a little bit of both with Gina’s past track record! She may think that Gina could get to the bottom of everything but you just don’t know what you are going to get with her! However whenever Gina comes to visit Sally she loves her and she tells her that she’s trying to get her out, so if Sally knew she was seeing Duncan, she might hope she’s doing all she can to help but she may be a little worried as to how she’s going about it because Duncan is a very clever man!

Would Sally be worried that Gina would believe Duncan’s lies?

She would be really worried if she knew. Duncan’s so clever that everyone begins to believe his lies! Also for Gina, with her feelings for Tim, making him believe the worst about Sally works in her favour, which would be devastating for Sally if she knew what was happening!

During the week leading up to the trial, where Tim visits her but can’t bring himself to tell her the truth about the character witness.

Sally simply thinks that because she is innocent, they will be able to find a character witness because she is a good person.  Is she knew they couldnt she would be really confused as to why nobody on the street would be a character witness, surely Gail or somebody would be it? Perhaps they are too afraid because they are all beginning to believe that she could’ve done what is being suggested of her! But Sally would never begin imagie that anybody would believe that of her, because it is just so not Sally, she wouldn’t do that! 

It’s the first day of the trail, how does Sally feel when there is no sign of Gina and Tim?

At first Sally is really worried, and there’s a moment where Sally is thinking where are they? Why aren’t they here? When Tim and Gina finally walk in it’s a relief for Sally, but Tim looks dishevelled and this upsets her. For Sally it’s important that Tim looks pristine because the gallery is looking at her and her family.

During the trial Duncan takes the stand. What’s going through Sally’s head during this?

It’s a terrible moment for Sally because everything he says is a lie. He makes a passionate speech about how he hadn’t had an affair with another woman before Sally. He brings up Sally’s past and her kiss with Kevin the night before she married Tim. It’s absolutely devastating for Sally.

Do you think at this point Sally starts to believe that she could go to prison for this?

It’s a moment for Sally where she realises how bad the situation is looking. Sally is very worried that she might go to prison, but I think she’s also more worried that Tim might be thinking she has had an affair. When Sally speaks in the dock and she talks about how much she loves Tim. She realises that there is something more important at stake...her marriage to Tim! It upsets her that the man she loves doesn’t believe her.

When it all seems bad for Sally, she suddenly has a moment that makes her believe that it could all work out. What is this?

There is a date that Duncan has mentioned and previously Sally couldn’t remember what she was doing on that date. So, when she suddenly remembers that is was her birthday, she recalls being so busy looking after Jack because he was ill. It was a terrible time for them, Sally was looking after Kevin and she was also trying to be there for Tim. She was also trying to help Sophie because she was feeling guilt over the situation. I think Sally felt that she was stuck in the middle of it all. No wonder she couldn’t remember at first.

With this new-found knowledge of what she was doing on this date. Knowing it’s going to take a while to retrieve the CCTV, Sophie suggests to Sally to delay the trial. What does Sally do?

Sophie suggests to Sally that if she could delay the trail by a few days they could get the CCTV footage they need. Sally then gets off the phone and goes back to her cell and tells Abi that she needs to delay the trial. Sally says she can’t do it, so Abi comes up with a plan.

Do you think Sally has come to a point where she will go to extreme lengths to clear her name?

I think it’s when Sophie tells her that she’s done everything by the book and she’s been honest, yet it’s not getting her anywhere. Only taking matters into her own hands is going to help, otherwise she could face being locked up for the rest of her life. I think that’s the moment it dawns on her how important it is to delay the trial.

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