Norris Cole is returning to Coronation Street – as Ken Barlow’s new neighbour.
Corrie fans were left shocked yesterday when Ken revealed he was selling up and leaving the cobbles after 60 years but he is only moving to a retirement flat elsewhere in Weatherfield.
And now it’s been confirmed that he will be surrounded by old friends when he moves into his luxury apartment in Still Waters.
He will find Norris already living there with his new wife Freda – Emily Bishop’s niece.
Ken has been part of the furniture of the cobbles since the very first episode in December 1960.
But now it seems he has decided the time is right, at 80 years old, to move onto pastures new.
Last night’s episode ended with Ken walking the cobbles with dog Eccles.
As he surveyed at his surroundings he said: “80 years too late, but finally it’s time to go. Goodbye old friend.”
Actor William Roache, who is not leaving the show, said: “This is a big decision for Ken but in some ways he thinks it is now or never.
“He has lived on the same street his whole life and in the same house for most of it.
“He feels that he had a chance to move away with Martha on the barge but he let her go. Part of him regretted that. He doesn’t want to make the same mistake again and Claudia is very persuasive.
“Filming that final scene of the episode was very poignant, just Ken and Eccles and the cobbles.
“He breaks the news to the family next week and they are surprised but very soon Peter and Tracy start squabbling over who will be given first refusal on the house.
“We have already started filming at the retirement complex and I am really enjoying it, it always feels different when we film away from the street.
“It seems fitting that Ken makes this decision in the 10,000th episode but it will be strange not filming in number 1 after all this time.”
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