Battle of the Soaps: Coronation Street vs Emmerdale

Who comes out on top in the battle of the ITV soaps?

| Updated:

They’re two of the nation’s most-loved soaps, but who comes out on top in a battle of Coronation Street and Emmerdale?

Where would you rather live? We weigh up the pros and cons of the Dales versus the cobbles and decide which is best.

Best local pub

Rovers Return Coronation Street ITV
The Rovers Return (Credit: ITV)

If it’s going to happen in Soapland it’s going to happen in the local boozer. Corrie’s got the Rovers Return, while Emmerdale’s got the Woolpack.

The Rovers was owned by Jack and Annie Walker when Coronation Street began airing in 1960. It has since changed hands no less than 18 times in the 58 years the show has been airing. The Woolpack, meanwhile, has had only 11 different owner combinations.

Both pubs are pretty dangerous places to enjoy a drink, with the Rovers being set on fire twice – once in 1986 due to a faulty electrical box, and again in 2013 when Karl Munro set fire to the place, plus an explosion in 2016 thanks to leaking petrol from David Platt’s car crash.

The Woolie’s had its fair share of drama too though. There was an armed robbery in 1978, the plane crash in 1993, a fire in 1998, and the roof collapsing, killing Tricia Dingle in the storm of 2004. During another storm in 2013, Cameron Murray laid siege to the place and ended up shooting Alicia Gallagher.

You can’t always expect a warm welcome in either place – with current Woolpack owner Charity Dingle not being the most pleasant to customers, and Rovers landlady Jenny Bradley constantly bickering with her husband Johnny.

In the Rovers you can enjoy Betty’s hotpot and pub quizzes, and in the Woolie you can sample the culinary delights of Marlon Dingle and Victoria Sugden.

The winner is: Coronation Street! It’s a tough call, but we’re not sure you can beat Betty’s hotpot in the Rovers!

Best Factory

Underworld employs most of Weatherfield (Credit: ITV)

Both Corrie and Emmerdale employ plenty of locals in their factories – Underworld, making knickers, in Corrie and Sharma & Sharma, the sweet factory, in Emmerdale.

Carla Connor is currently in charge of Underworld and she’s a pretty fair boss. Despite scheming with business partner, Nick Tilsley’s estranged wife, Elsa, to scam him out of his half of the factory, Carla knows her knickers.

She’s always encouraged young talent, and she’s definitely got a heart in there somewhere – even if she has let the factory get into debt a number of times and had to be rescued by a man who inevitably turns out to be evil: see Tony Gordon and Frank Foster to name but two.

Jai and Rishi run the factory (Credit: ITV)

Over in Emmerdale at Sharma & Sharma it’s chocolate galore under the leadership of Jai Sharma and his dad Rishi. The business itself seems to tick along nicely, it’s just the family in charge who have their issues.

Jai was addicted to cocaine and has done some despicable things in his time, including locking Rachel Breckle, the mother of his love child, in a freezer at the factory after an argument in 2015.

In 2011, Lisa Dingle was raped after hours at the factory by fellow colleague Derek Benrose.

The winner is: Emmerdale. The lure of chocolate might be too much to resist for some, but the drama in Underworld is just too good: who wouldn’t want a front seat to Carla and all her man dramas?!

Best corner shop

Dev’s corner shop has been destroyed and rebuilt multiple times (Credit: ITV)

A corner shop is the staple of any community, and Dev Alahan and David Metcalfe fulfil those roles on Corrie and Emmerdale respectively.

Dev has owned D&S Alahan’s since 1999, but it went up in smoke in 2004 after his vengeful ex, Maya Sharma, set fire to all of his six shops across Manchester after he married Sunita. The place was rebuilt and destroyed again in the tram crash in 2010, killing shop assistant Molly Dobbs. And only last year, 2017, Dev closed the shop to refurbish it.

You can drink wine in David’s shop (Credit: ITV)

Emmerdale’s local store, run by David Metcalfe and imaginatively titled: David’s Shop, is a little more upmarket than Dev’s.

Selling fresh bread, and local farm produce, plus having a few tables to drink wine and eat olives, you can get more than just a pint of milk from here. Even if David does have a questionable attitude to how he deals with his fresh fruit and veg  it seems to be a very nice shopping experience for those living in the Dales.

The winner is: Emmerdale! David’s seems safer and, let’s face it, who wouldn’t rather be served by David than Dev?

Best neighbourhood

It’s fair to say living in both Coronation Street and Emmerdale you’re taking your life in your own hands!

There’s fires, car accidents, violence, cheating, and sinister grooming to name a few things, so frankly neither is the quiet caring community they might bill themselves to be.

Both the Hotten the police and the Weatherfield constabulary are generally very busy. And they all make plenty of mistakes – and have corrupt officers.

Neil Clifton on Corrie was responsible for raping Bethany Platt and then blackmailing her into silence, while DI Bails on Emmerdale was recently found guilty of raping Charity Dingle when she was a teen.

Evil DI Bails was proved a rapist (Credit: ITV)

The police in Emmerdale seem to make such huge blunders characters get away with, well, murder. Carl King committed two murders and was never punished for either, Adam Barton is on the run for a crime his mother, Moira Barton, committed, and Robert Sugden is still walking free after effectively murdering Katie Sugden.

The winner is: Coronation Street! Crimes may be committed on the cobbles, but at least the police (mostly) get it right.

Best family

Both Emmerdale and Corrie have huge families, central to the show – and all of them have been through enough drama to test any clan.

The Dingles have been blighted by deaths, mental health issues, violence, money worries, cheating, debts, huge family feuds, kissing cousins (a lot of times) and drama, drama, drama. And they’re a family that keeps getting bigger as more long-lost relatives keep showing up.

But they love each other and they really care. The Dingles always have the backs of their family members and will do anything to protect them – even if sometimes, it’s from themselves.

Barlows corrie ITV
Ken is the Barlow patriarch (Credit: ITV)

Meanwhile, the Barlows are headed up by Ken Barlow, who’s the longest-serving character on the show, having been in it from day one. He has been with the cast of Coronation Street for 59 years.

But they’re a family of murderers, alcoholics, liars, cheats and manipulators. Ken even ended up being pushed down the stairs by his own son last year.

The winner is: Emmerdale! The Dingles have got their issues, but they (usually) protect their own – if you were a Barlow they’d turn on you the second you looked at them wrong!

And the winner is…

Coronation Street!

Although we’d rather shop at David’s and be members of the Dingle clan, Betty’s hotpot and a pint in the Rovers after a hard day’s work at Underworld sounds good to us to miss out on. Just don’t make us be related to Tracy Barlow…

Related Topics