Rita Sullivan will be left for dead when she gets trapped under a Christmas tree in Coronation Street, according to reports.
The cobbles favourite - played by show legend Barbara Knox - looks set for a winter of discontent when she suffers a fall while putting up her festive fairy lights.
But in a devastating twist nobody notices she isn't there after she tells locals she is going away for Christmas.
An ITV source said: "Dev puts up the Christmas tree for Rita but doesn't have time to sort the fairy lights.
"She ends up putting the lights on herself but when switching them on she trips and falls, pulling the tree on top of her."
The plot is expected to raise awareness of the loneliness that people can experience over the festive period.
The source added to The Sun newspaper's Bizarre TV column: "Spending Christmas alone is a scenario many OAPs may find themselves in a few weeks."
Fortunately for Rita, she will eventually be discovered by a neighbour.
Rita's latest cobbles involvement has seen her lend a huge support to Gemma Winter ahead of her giving birth to quadruplets earlier this week.
And Dolly-Rose Campbell, who plays the new mother-of-four, recently admitted she was "frightened" filming her labour scenes in a cable car.
She said: "They go up in the cable car and Gemma thinks it is great but Chesney is a bit afraid of heights which is ironic as, in real life, I am the one that is scared of heights.
"Sam and I were in one cable car and all the cameras were attached to the cable car.
"We were up in the air and completely isolated from everyone, it was just the two of us. The crew were also in cable cars.
"We had rehearsed in a cable car that they brought to the studios but that was on the floor in the car park, it gave us an idea of how the scene would work but nothing can prepare you for doing those scenes so high up in such a tiny cable car.
"By the time we were in there with me wearing the big prosthetic belly there was very little room. The cable car also had a weight limit so everything had to be weighed."
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