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Coronation Street: the original cast members

Who was on screen in 1960?

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Who was in the Coronation Street cast when it began in December 1960? And are any of them there now?

Here’s the complete original line up of the cast of Coronation Street:

David Barlow – Alan Rothwell

David Barlow was in Coronation Street for eight years from 1960 to 1968. He was Ken Barlow’s younger brother and an apprentice engineer turned pro-footballer.

As David’s footballing career took off, he was in and out of Weatherfield and found himself no longer fitting in with the locals.

When his time on the pitch was cut short by injury, David returned to Weatherfield, married Irma Ogden and bought the corner shop.

He soon grew bored of shop life and wanted to return to football – signing for a team in Australia. The Barlows emigrated in 1968, and in 1970 Ken received a call to say his brother had been killed in a car accident.

Read more: Ever landlord and landlady of the Rovers Return

Frank Barlow – Frank Pemberton

Editorial use only Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (9214392ko) Frank Pemberton (as Frank Barlow) "Coronation Street" TV Series - 1961 Coronation Street is a long running Television soap opera set in the fictional North of England town of Weatherfield. Created by Tony Warren. First broadcast on December 9th, 1960. Produced by ITV Granada.
Twice-married Frank never saw eye to eye with son Ken (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

The head of the Barlow family, Frank was on screen from 1960-64, in 1967 and finally in 1971.

He was a hardworking northern man, a postman, who was at loggerheads with son Ken who believed he was better than his family.

Frank was married to Ida, but after her death in 1961, he found love again in 1963 with Christine Appleby – who was the same age as Ken!

But their romance didn’t last and after a premium bonds win in 1964, Frank left Weatherfield for a new life, and after a couple of return appearances, died off screen sometime between 1971 and 1975.

Ida Barlow – Noel Dyson

Ida loved her role in life as Frank’s wife and mum to Ken and David. Enjoying being a housewife, she kept a clean and happy home, rarely even socialising in the Rovers.

She visited next door neighbour Albert Tatlock regularly and was like a daughter to him.

Ida was killed when she was hit by a bus after actress Noel Dyson quit the role after less than a year playing her.

Ken Barlow – William Roache

Coronation Street's Ken Barlow first ever episode
Ken Barlow is the only remaining original cast member (Credit: ITV/YouTube)

The longest serving cast member of Corrie is still a permanent fixture on the cobbles after almost 60 years.

Ken was the over-achieving eldest son of the working-class Barlows. Moralistic, political and something of a ladies’ man, Ken’s dreams of leaving the Street for a better life never quite materialised.

Three marriages, four children (and a stepdaughter) later, Ken’s still central to Street life, but has often been called “boring” by critics – something William strenuously argues against.

And he’s right when you think of the storylines he’s been involved in – the Mike/Ken/Deirdre love triangle and who pushed Ken Barlow to name but two.

Minnie Caldwell – Margot Bryant

From 1960-1975 Minnie Caldwell was one third of Ena Sharples’ gang. She was timid and indecisive, leading Ena to label her “daft”.

Minnie left in 1976 to live with an old flame and was never seen again, though it was revealed in 1988 that she had died and was buried in Weatherfield.

Ivan Cheveski – Ernst Walder

Husband of Elsie Tanner’s daughter, Linda, Ivan worked in Warrington, but lived on the cobbles so Linda could be close to her family. He eventually took up a job at a local ironworks as well as evening work as a potman in the Rovers.

The Cheveskis had a baby, Paul, in 1961, but his lingering cough became cause for concern and the family decided to emigrate to Canada. They returned a few times, and eventually set up home in Birmingham.

But affairs and violence blighted the marriage and they split up off-screen in 1984 for good.

Linda Cheveski – Anne Cunningham

Editorial use only Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (10146224ji) Anne Cunningham (as Linda Cheveski) 'Coronation Street TV Show - 1966 Coronation Street is a long running Television soap opera set in the fictional North of England town of Weatherfield. Created by Tony Warren. First broadcast on December 9th, 1960. Produced by ITV Granada. Coronation Street is a long running Television soap opera set in the fictional North of England town of Weatherfield. Created by Tony Warren. First broadcast on December 9th, 1960. Produced by ITV Granada.
Elsie’s daughter couldn’t make up her mind about her husband (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

Linda was on the Street on and off between 1960 and 1984. Daughter of Elsie Tanner, Linda was just like her mother being eager to find a husband.

Linda’s marriage to Polish Ivan was central to many Corrie storylines in the early years as they struggled to cope with how her pregnancy affected their marriage.

Their move to Canada saw Linda have an affair with a Canadian, but eventually move to Birmingham for a fresh start with her family. It didn’t last though, and she revealed she’d left Ivan for good when she returned to Weatherfield to see Elsie’s house sale through for her in 1984.

Christine Hardman – Christine Hargreaves

Christine lived with her mother, May, at number 13 and worked at Ellistons raincoat factory, but the daily boredom and death of her mother caused her to question life. She contemplated jumping off the factory roof in 1962, but was talked down by Ken Barlow.

She started a relationship with Ken’s father, Frank, but soon realised he loved her more than she did him and the age gap became a problem.

Christine left Weatherfield for good in 1963.

Esther Hayes – Daphne Oxenford

Kind and friendly Esther was a spinster who had looked after her family all her life and when the show started lived at no.5.

She was a listening ear for many other residents, but eventually left to live in a luxury flat on the other side of Weatherfield in 1962. She returned a few times, the last one being for the wedding of Emily Nugent and Ernest Bishop in 1972.

Harry Hewitt – Ivan Beavis

Married to Lizzie Hewitt, Harry was left distraught when she died before Corrie started in 1959. So upset was he that he decided he couldn’t look after their daughter Lucille alone and sent her to live in an orphanage.

Harry remarried Concepta Riley in 1961 and Lucille returned to live with her family in 1962, and became a big sister when Christopher was born later that year.

In 1964, Harry and Concepta moved, along with Christopher, to Concepta’s native Ireland. Harry returned in 1967 for Elsie and Steve Tanner’s wedding, and was killed off when he was crushed while repairing a van.

Lucille Hewitt – Jennifer Moss

Lucille Hewitt was the only child character on the cobbles when the show began.

Daughter of Harry, she spent several years in an orphanage following the death of her mother, but visited her father regularly.

After returning to live with Harry and his new wife Concepta, Lucille refused to go when the family decided to move to Ireland – apparently show bosses thought a street with no children would be ridiculous, but had sacked the actors who played Harry and Concepta.

Lucille was fostered by Jack and Annie Walker and continued to live there until she decided to leave to live in Ireland with Concepta in 1974. She passed away off-screen in 2010.

Florrie Lindley – Betty Alberge

Editorial use only Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (814140eq) 'Coronation Street' TV Episode 1: 9 December 1960 Florrie Lindley [Betty Alberge] ITV ARCHIVE
Florrie was in the first scene of the first episode (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)
Florrie Lindley appeared in the first ever Coronation Street scene as she bought the corner shop from Elsie Lappin and renamed it Lindley’s Provisions. She lied to her new neighbours she was a widow, when in fact she’d just separated from her husband, Norman.

She was plagued by loneliness, falling for both widowers Frank Barlow and Harry Hewitt, though neither felt the same as she did.

Eventually her husband returned and wanted her to move to Canada and rekindle their marriage. After much deliberation, Florrie left with him in 1965.

Martha Longhurst – Lynne Carol

Martha starred in the show from its second episode until 1964 when she was killed off.

She was one of Ena Sharples’ drinking companions and was often seen with her and Minnie Caldwell in the snug of the Rovers. But it was old school friend Ted Ashley she was really interested in, pursuing a romantic connection with him, until he let her down gently.

When half the cast were axed in 1964, Martha was the first to go. She had a heart attack in the snug of the Rovers and died.

Concepta Riley – Doreen Keogh

Concepta was a barmaid at the Rovers and treated like a daughter by Jack and Annie.

She had a relationship with Harry Hewitt and he proposed after a trip to Blackpool. She gave birth to their son, Christopher, in 1962, and her biggest storyline came when the baby was kidnapped.

Concepta left Weatherfield for Ireland in 1964 and returned in 1967 for Elsie and Steve’s wedding, after which Harry was killed off.

She returned to Ireland where she met and married Sean Regan, whom she brought for a visit in 1975 and he made a pass at Bet Lynch.

Ena Sharples – Violet Carson

Editorial use only. Exclusive - Premium Rates Apply. Call your Account Manager for pricing. Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (803054jw) 'Coronation Street' TV - 1960's - Ena Sharples [Violet Carson] ITV ARCHIVE
If ever there was a soap icon, Ena was it (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)
Ena was the Mission’s caretaker, fearsome, Old Testament in her morals and attitude, and held no truck with strumpets like Elsie Tanner.

She sat in the snug with her two besties Minnie Caldwell and Martha Longhurst setting the world to rights over a few milk stouts.

Despite various health scares including a stroke and a heart attack, Ena stayed on the Street until 1980 when she left to live in St Annes. She never returned to the cobbles.

Leonard Swindley – Arthur Lowe

Lay Preacher Leonard Swindley also owned Swindley’s Emporium, employing Emily Nugent. When it fell into disrepair in 1962, he sold it and it became Gamma Garments, with Swindley staying on as manager.

He grew close to Emily, who proposed to him in 1964, though when the wedding day came both of them admitted they didn’t really love each other and called it off. They remained friends though.

In 1965, Swindley was promoted and left Weatherfield.

Dennis Tanner – Philip Lowrie

Editorial use only Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (9214392ls) Philip Lowrie (as Dennis Tanner) "Coronation Street" TV Series - 1961 Coronation Street is a long running Television soap opera set in the fictional North of England town of Weatherfield. Created by Tony Warren. First broadcast on December 9th, 1960. Produced by ITV Granada.
Tearaway Tanner, who returned in the 00s and broke Rita’s heart (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

Dennis Tanner had just been released from prison for petty theft when Corrie started. After his mother Elsie despaired of him not finding a job, he secured one at a club and began a showbiz career.

But sticking at a job – or a woman – wasn’t something Dennis was known for, clocking up hours as a hairdresser, a builder, and a shop assistant, before returning to showbiz, and then becoming a salesman.

After several romances, he became besotted with hippy Jenny Sutton and they married and left in 1968.

Dennis returned in 2011 when Sophie Webster and Sian Powers found him sleeping rough. He wooed and married Rita, but left her for Gloria Price, and although he returned some months later having been dumped by Gloria, Rita only reunited with him briefly before kicking him to the curb. He left for good in 2014.

Elsie Tanner – Pat Phoenix

Editorial Use Only. No merchandising Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (9901130r) Pat Phoenix (as Elsie Tanner) 'Coronation Street' TV Show - 1964 Coronation Street is a long running Television soap opera set in the fictional North of England town of Weatherfield. Created by Tony Warren. First broadcast on December 9th, 1960. Produced by ITV Granada.
Another soap legend, Elsie Tanner (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

Soap icon Elsie Tanner was the street siren. Mum to Linda and Dennis, the likes of Ena Sharples looked down on her and found her without morals.

She married Steve Tanner in 1967 and emigrated to Canada, but she returned when they split up.

She went on to marry Alan Howard, and they went to live in Newcastle, but Elsie once again returned in 1976 following their divorce. In 1983 old flame Bill Gregory returned to the Street and asked her to go and run a bar with him in Portugal. She decided to go and left Weatherfield forever.

Albert Tatlock – Jack Howarth

Grumpy old man Albert was an institution on the cobbles, forever complaining about his age and living on low income from his pension.

He was the uncle of Valerie Tatlock, who eventually married Ken Barlow, but when she died in 1971, Ken moved into no.1 to look after Albert until his death in May 1984.

Annie Walker – Doris Speed

Editorial use only. Exclusive - Premium Rates Apply. Call your Account Manager for pricing. Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/REX/Shutterstock (670025md) 'Coronation Street' TV - 1966 - Annie Walker [Doris Speed] ITV ARCHIVE
The first Rovers landlady, Annie Walker (Credit: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)
Rovers landlady Annie was in charge of the local boozer until 1983.

She was thought to be snobbish, and snooty with delusions of grandeur.

Along with husband Jack, they became the first Street double act, only split apart by his death in 1970.

Jack Walker – Arthur Leslie

Long-suffering husband Jack Walker was devoted to wife Annie, even though she accused him of having countless affairs.

Jack fell ill and went to stay with their daughter, Joan, in 1970 and died of a heart attack while there.

He left a devastated street and a heartbroken wife behind.

Read more: Coronation Street’s current cast list

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