Corrie’s Bill Roache pays tribute to Anne Kirkbride five years after her death

Anne passed away from breast cancer in 2015

Bill Roache, who plays Ken Barlow in Coronation Street has paid tribute to late co-star Anne Kirkbride on the five year anniversary of her death.

Anne played Bill’s on-screen wife Deirdre in the soap for decades before dying of breast cancer in 2015.

Ken Barlow
Bill paid tribute to his late friend (Credit: ITV)

Now Bill has remembered his late friend in a new interview.

He told the Mirror: “You were never short of a laugh with Annie and that’s what we remember about her most.

“But I really loved her and she loved me, in a really good sense. We had our private lives, but on screen you couldn’t have had a closer thing to a real marriage, which was lovely.

“All the happy side – well, we had a lot of the unhappy side, but we enjoyed that!

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“We would always have a laugh, even during rowing scenes.”

He added: “I miss her company, you felt better for being with her. But we have a laugh about her and the things she did. We have happy memories of her here.”

The Corrie set still pays tribute to Anne with a large picture of her on the wall and her old dressing room still bearing her name.

Bill revealed the actor marrying the pair on screen was a real priest (Credit: ITV)

A source previously told the Daily Star: “No-one could bring themselves to remove the name plaque so it will just stay.

“Anne wasn’t just an actor in Coronation Street – she was Coronation Street.”

Soap favourite Beverley Callard revealed in 2016 that the picture of her beloved friend had helped her cope with returning to work after she took six weeks off from Weatherfield to recover from severe depression.

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She said: “My first day back at Corrie was nerve-racking.

“But I’ve got the most beautiful photo of Annie on my dressing room wall.

“I looked at her and said, ‘come on, you need to kick me up the [blank] now, I need a push’.”

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