- Coronation Street Live (2000)
"Episode 4945" Coronation Street episode Directed by Tony Prescott Written by Peter Whalley Original air date 8 December 2000 Running time 60 minutes (including commercials) Guest stars Episode chronology ← Previous
Coronation Street Live is a live episode of the British soap opera Coronation Street which was broadcast on Friday 8 December 2000 as part of the show's 40th anniversary celebrations. The episode was an hour long and aired at 8.00pm, an hour after a repeat of the first episode with an introduction by William Roache from the soap's outdoor set where last minute preparations for the live episode were under way. The episode was number 4945 in the series and was the first live edition to be broadcast since Episode 17, which aired on 3 February 1961. It was watched by in excess of 16 million viewers.
The episode is notable for an appearance by Charles, Prince of Wales who visited the show's Manchester based studios earlier in the day and met cast members. Footage of him meeting actress Sue Nicholls was incorporated into the storyline following prior agreement with the Prince's staff, and this is the only part of the episode which was pre-recorded. Scenes for the episode were broadcast live from the Coronation Street outdoor set and the Stage One studio complex next door. The episode charted the events of a single day. However, because transmission was during the hours of darkness all scenes set outdoors appeared near the beginning or end of the programme. Scenes meant to be set during the daytime were studio based.
With council workmen set to arrive to begin digging up the Street's cobble stones and replacing them with tarmac, Ken and Duggie decide to make up a rota so that the Street's entrance will be continuously manned by demonstrators.
Vera is critical but stable at Weatherfield General, having had an allergic reaction to the antibiotics. Tyrone and Maria convince Vera's husband Jack to go home and rest, as he has been at Vera's bedside all night. However, when Martin advises them that Jack should not stay away for too long, Tyrone panics and phones Curly to ask him to fetch Jack. Curly, who is speaking on the phone in the Kabin, is overheard by Norris, who misinterprets the conversation and believes that Vera has died.
Audrey brags to Rita about her upcoming lunch date with Prince Charles, who is visiting Weatherfield to open a new planning office at the Town Hall. Before she leaves, she calls into Roy's Rolls to warn Ken and Duggie that the tarmackers are getting a court injunction meaning the police will be able to remove the demonstrators. Ken is working on getting a preservation order from Northern Heritage but fears this may take too long.
Hayley questions Roy about their interview with Peter Hartnell, but Roy is more concerned with the demo. At the Rovers, Natalie tells Liz that she will be spending the day with the brewery, who are going to show her around other pubs. Natalie later overhears Liz and Geena express their pity for her situation as a single mother with a pub to run. Duggie tells Natalie about his experiences growing up in a pub, which make her even more worried.
Jack reads a letter from Vera aloud to Curly. Jack is moved by Vera's words but tries not to shed tears. In her letter, Vera confesses to an affair which she had before Terry was born, which led to her uncertainty over Terry's parenity. Jack tells Curly he knew about the affair, and it ended after he beat up the man concerned - Vera never found out. Jack explains that he knows Terry is his son because he reminds him of the way he used to be. Jack and Curly are joined by Emily, who has been told that Vera has died and come to offer her sympathies. Jack and Curly race to the hospital, where they are relieved to learn that there has been no change in Vera's condition.
News of Vera's apparent death spreads to the Rovers, putting a dampener on the spirits of the protesters. Curly and Emily confer and, realising that Norris was the source of the false rumour, confront him. Curly later puts the record straight. Just as everybody celebrates the fact that Vera has not died, Audrey returns from her lunch with Prince Charles and says the tarmackers will arrive soon with a police escort. Eileen overhears and hatches a plan.
Terry arrives at the hospital having heard about Vera. Jack stops him leaving and berates him. Terry breaks down when he sees Vera. As Curly returns, Vera starts to regain consciousness, managing to utter a few words. Terry watches from outside the hospital room.
The tarmackers arrive and the police give the demonstrators five minutes to move or they will be arrested. Norris is ready to admit defeat but Ken and Duggie persuade everybody to stay put. Ken manages to stall the police by saying he's waiting for his solicitor, but with the officer's patience wearing thin, the demonstrators still refuse to move. As the police begin manhandling them away, Eileen and Dennis blockade the Street with a convoy of taxis from Street Cars, Steve knows nothing about the scheme, however, and when he arrives on the scene, he is annoyed when the police threaten to tow the vehicles away.
Peter Barlow arrives in a taxi as the residents celebrate their brief victory. He is not surprised to find Ken at the centre of things. Peter tells Deirdre and Blanche that he has left the Navy and that his wife Jessica has left him. He goes for a drink in the Rovers and tries to chat up Linda, unaware that she is married to Mike Baldwin, but becomes aware of her identity after making a fool of himself.
Natalie, Geena and Liz watch the ITV Evening News on which Sir Trevor McDonald reads an item about Prince Charles's visit to Manchester. Audrey Roberts is seen being presented to the Prince at Weatherfield Town Hall. Hayley finally finds the opportunity to speak to Roy. She is distressed that Roy does not see her as a woman, and when he clarifies that he does not think of her in the same way as other women, before going off to join the demonstrators, Hayley writes him a letter, packs her bags and leaves their flat.
Ken realises that the preservation order will not arrive in time to save the cobbles. However, Duggie realises that nobody knows what the preservation order looks like, so creates a fake preservation order, which will hopefully fool the police long enough for the real one to arrive. They type it on Ken's laptop before emailing it to Stan Potter, a friend of Duggie's, who prints a hard copy for them. With the cars moved, the police give the tarmackers the go-ahead to start work, but Stan arrives just in time to deliver the fake preservation order. The police are sceptical, but order the tarmackers to pack up for the night. The residents celebrate their victory, jeering at Les Battersby when he tries to join in. Roy reads Hayley's letter and frantically searches for her as the celebrations are under way. Natalie tells Geena she plans to sell the Rovers to a pub chain. Ken leads the demonstrators in a toast to tradition and community.
The announcement that Coronation Street would air a live episode to celebrate its 40th anniversary was first made by Granada Television in August 2000. Television producers in the United States had recently experimented with live episodes to great success, with a live edition of the hospital drama ER attracting 42 million viewers, and Granada Television believed that a live episode would be an ideal way to celebrate Coronation Street's 40th anniversary (a number of episodes, including the first one on 9 December 1960 had been recorded live). The show's producer, Jane Macnaught, said: "It will mean a lot of hard work for the cast and production team involved, but I know it will be an enjoyable and exhilarating experience."
At this point few details were available of any potential storyline, but a spokeswoman said that the episode would see one of the characters have a serious health condition, while a couple would be faced with a personal dilemma. Other events to mark the anniversary would include a documentary about the life of actor Bill Roache, who had played the role of Ken Barlow since the soap's inception, and a tribute programme called Forty Years of Coronation Street.
On 5 December it was announced that the Slade singer Noddy Holder would make a cameo appearance in the episode as a character named Stan. The actor John Savident who played Fred Elliott was also due to appear, but was unable to take part following an attack on him in his home by an intruder. It was also reported that because the episode would be aired at night cast members had been rehearsing many of the scenes in the evening as part of their preparations. Cast members did not usually rehearse before recording scenes, but it was reported they had spent forty hours rehearsing for the episode.
On 8 December Prince Charles visited the Granada Studios in Manchester and unveiled a plaque on the set to celebrate the soap's 40th anniversary. The plaque was located on a wall next to the Rovers Return Inn, but would eventually be moved to a green room where cast members relax between scenes. He also met cast members, including the actress Sue Nicholls. Footage of their meeting was later incorporated into the live episode, which showed a news report of Nicholls' character Audrey Roberts being presented to the Prince at the opening of a new planning office at Weatherfield Town Hall. An hour before the 8:00pm episode was due to be aired, ITV showed a repeat of the first episode from 1960. The episode was preceded by an introduction from William Roache, who was on set preparing to take part in the live episode. The live episode itself was preceded by a montage featuring the Coronation Street cast members over which was played the popular song "You're Nobody till Somebody Loves You". The sequence ended with the caption "Coronation Street - Forty Years - Thank You".
Opening and closing scenes
The programme's title sequence was not used at the beginning of the episode. Instead, the opening moment of the first scene was transmitted in black and white with a "scratchy film" overlay meant to simulate apparent early broadcasts. The first scene showed Sarah Platt telling her brother David to come inside for breakfast. The end credits of the episode included the caption: "With thanks to H.R.H. The Prince of Wales".
- Ashley Peacock - Steven Arnold
- Les Battersby - Bruce Jones
- Toyah Battersby - Georgia Taylor
- Martin Platt - Sean Wilson
- Ken Barlow - William Roache
- Blanche Hunt - Maggie Jones
- David Platt - Jack P. Shepherd
- Norris Cole - Malcolm Hebden
- Sarah Platt - Tina O'Brien
- Audrey Roberts - Sue Nicholls
- Deirdre Rachid - Anne Kirkbride
- Dev Alahan - Jimmi Harkishin
- Jack Duckworth - William Tarmey
- Vera Duckworth - Elizabeth Dawn
- Tyrone Dobbs - Alan Halsall
- Maria Sutherland - Samia Ghadie
- Mike Baldwin - Johnny Briggs
- Rita Sullivan - Barbara Knox
- Hayley Cropper - Julie Hesmondhalgh
- Duggie Ferguson - John Bowe
- Roy Cropper - David Neilson
- Natalie Barnes - Denise Welch
- Geena Gregory - Jennifer James
- Liz McDonald - Beverley Callard
- Curly Watts - Kevin Kennedy
- Emma Watts - Angela Lonsdale
- Emily Bishop - Eileen Derbyshire
- Eileen Grimshaw - Sue Cleaver
- Dennis Stringer - Charles Dale
- Janice Battersby - Vicky Entwistle
- Linda Baldwin - Jacqueline Pirie
- Terry Duckworth - Nigel Pivaro
- Peter Barlow - Chris Gascoyne
- Steve McDonald - Simon Gregson
- Nurse Dooley - Donna Lythgoe
- Sean Swift - Steve Garti
- Police Sergeant - John Graham Davies
- Trevor McDonald - as himself
- Stan Potter - Noddy Holder
As the show's 50th anniversary approached, there was some speculation about the possibility of another live edition, particularly after rival soap EastEnders aired a live edition to celebrate its 25th anniversary on air on 19 February 2010. In April 2010 Bill Roache confirmed that ITV would not be airing another live edition. He said; "We're not going to do a live episode, we did that in the Millennium year [the show's 40th anniversary], we don't want to do that again." However, on 29 August actor Keith Duffy said that Coronation Street would air a live episode to celebrate its 50th anniversary, something which was confirmed on 1 September by ITV. The episode was aired on Thursday 9 December as part of a week long celebration of the show's 50th birthday.
- ^ a b c d "Coronation Street's live birthday treat". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 28 August 2000. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/899105.stm. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- ^ a b c "Noddy to make Street cameo". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 5 December 2000. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/1056000.stm. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- ^ "Stabbed Street star to miss live episode". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 4 December 2000. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/1054166.stm. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- ^ "Prince stars in live soap". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 8 December 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/1061585.stm. Retrieved 27 April 2010.
- ^ "Prince Charles helps Street party". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 8 December 2000. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/1060852.stm. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- ^ Hardman, Robert (9 December 2000). "Coronation treat for Prince at the Rovers". Daily Telegraph (Telegraph Media Group). http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1377591/Coronation-treat-for-Prince-at-the-Rovers.html. Retrieved 26 April 2010.
- ^ Coronation Street: Episode 4945, ITV, 8 December 2000, 8:00pm
- ^ Millar, Paul (5 April 2010). "Bill Roache rules out live Corrie special". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/soaps/s3/coronation-street/news/a212551/bill-roache-rules-out-live-corrie-special.html. Retrieved 27 April 2010.
- ^ Daniels,, Colin (29 August 2010). "Duffy: 'Corrie will go live for 50th'". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/soaps/s3/coronation-street/news/a269430/duffy-corrie-will-go-live-for-50th.html. Retrieved 29 August 2010.
- ^ Love,, Ryan (1 September 2010). "'Coronation Street' confirms live episode". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/soaps/s3/coronation-street/news/a270820/coronation-street-confirms-live-episode.html. Retrieved 1 September 2010.
Coronation Street Present and future characters
Dennis Tanner · Ken Barlow · Emily Bishop · Rita Sullivan · Peter Barlow · Deirdre Barlow · Gail Platt · Tracy Barlow · Audrey Roberts · Nick Tilsley · Kevin Webster · Bill Webster · Sally Webster · Steve McDonald · Rosie Webster · David Platt · Tommy Duckworth · Norris Cole · Sophie Webster · Roy Cropper · Leanne Battersby · Hayley Cropper · Tyrone Dobbs · Dev Alahan · Eileen Grimshaw · Maria Connor · Kirk Sutherland · Jason Grimshaw · Sunita Alahan · Fiz Brown · Ciaran McCarthy · Simon Barlow · Sean Tully · Chesney Brown · Amy Barlow · Lloyd Mullaney · Amber Kalirai · Aadi Alahan · Asha Alahan · Becky McDonald · Michelle Connor · Carla Connor · Marcus Dent · Tina McIntyre · Julie Carp · Pam Hobsworth · Gary Windass · Anna Windass · Mary Taylor · Sian Powers · Liam Connor Jr. · Cheryl Gray · Brian Packham · Izzy Armstrong · Russ Gray · Owen Armstrong · Chris Gray · Katy Armstrong · Matt Carter · Kylie Turner · Jack Dobbs · Hope Stape · Frank Foster · Faye Butler · Jeff Cullen · Sylvia Goodwin · Stella Price · Karl Munro · Eva Price · Anne Foster · Sam Foster · Kirsty Soames
Umed Alahan · Christine Appleby · Keith Appleyard · Lewis Archer · Jamie Armstrong · Tricia Armstrong · Carol Baldwin · Danny Baldwin · Frankie Baldwin · Jamie Baldwin · Linda Baldwin · Mike Baldwin · Warren Baldwin · Adam Barlow · David Barlow · Frank Barlow · Ida Barlow · Irma Barlow · Janet Barlow · Susan Barlow · Valerie Barlow · Colin Barnes · Des Barnes · Natalie Barnes · Janice Battersby · Les Battersby · Toyah Battersby · Cilla Battersby-Brown · Suzie Birchall · Ernest Bishop · Natasha Blakeman · Jamie Baldwin · Jerry Booth · Myra Booth · Alan Bradley · Jenny Bradley · Don Brennan · Ivy Brennan · Debs Brownlow · Lorraine Brownlow · Teresa Bryant · Bernard Butler · Sandra Butler · Minnie Caldwell · Joe Carter · Jesse Chadwick · Minnie Chandra · Ivan Cheveski · Linda Cheveski · Josie Clarke · Andrea Clayton · Paul Clayton · Ronnie Clayton · Gordon Clegg · Ida Clough · Claudia Colby · Chris Collins · Diggory Compton · Liam Connor · Paul Connor · Ryan Connor · Maggie Cooke · Kelly Crabtree · Sheila Crossley · James Cunningham · Wiki Dankowska · Gwen Davies · Trevor Dean · Marcus Dent · Nita Desai · Ravi Desai · Vikram Desai · Jackie Dobbs · Molly Dobbs · Jack Duckworth · Lisa Duckworth · Terry Duckworth · Vera Duckworth · Eve Elliott · Fred Elliott · Samantha Failsworth · Len Fairclough · Doreen Fenwick · Duggie Ferguson · Tom Ferguson · Harry Flagg · Audrey Fleming · Dickie Fleming · Norma Ford · Edna Gee · Eunice Gee · Fred Gee · Alec Gilroy · Tony Gordon · Dot Greenhalgh · Bill Gregory · Geena Gregory · Maud Grimes · Sarah-Louise Grimshaw · Todd Grimshaw · Alma Halliwell · Molly Hardcastle · Nathan Harding · Danny Hargreaves · Angela Harris · Craig Harris · Katy Harris · Tommy Harris · Esther Hayes · Harry Hewitt · Lucille Hewitt · Richard Hillman · Reg Holdsworth · Rebecca Hopkins · Tony Horrocks · Doreen Horton · Geoff Horton · Alan Howard · Charlotte Hoyle · Blanche Hunt · Jessie Jackson · Joanne Jackson · Amber Kalirai · Greg Kelly · Tom Kerrigan · Penny King · Sam Kingston · Ray Langton · Bobbi Lewis · Florrie Lindley · Martha Longhurst · Doreen Lostock · Yana Lumb · Bet Lynch · Scooter Makuna · Gary Mallett · Judy Mallett · Anne Malone · Tara Mandal · Sonia Marshall · Dan Mason · Harry Mason · Andy McDonald · Jim McDonald · Liz McDonald · Karen McDonald · Vicky McDonald · Joe McIntyre · Fiona Middleton · Edna Miller · Charlie Moffitt · Poppy Morales · Darryl Morton · Jerry Morton · Jodie Morton · Kayleigh Morton · Mel Morton · Wilf Morton · Doug Murray · Spider Nugent · Hilda Ogden · Stan Ogden · Daniel Osbourne · Denise Osbourne · Becky Palmer · Claire Palmer · Ashley Peacock · Claire Peacock · Freddie Peacock · Joshua Peacock · Maxine Peacock · Phyllis Pearce · Lionel Petty · Sandra Petty · Bethany Platt · Martin Platt · Tanya Pooley · Graeme Proctor · Xin Proctor · Jez Quigley · Samir Rachid · Charlie Ramsden · Connie Rathbone · Matt Ramsden · Mark Redman · Concepta Regan · Lucy Richards · Ben Richardson · Alf Roberts · Renee Roberts · Maya Sharma · Ena Sharples · Archie Shuttleworth · Dave Smith · Vinny Sorrell · Effie Spicer · Roger Stiles · Jed Stone · Candice Stowe · Dennis Stringer · Luke Strong · Charlie Stubbs · John Stape · Percy Sugden · Ted Sullivan · Leonard Swindley · Elsie Tanner · Steve Tanner · Albert Tatlock · Zoe Tattersall · Kelly Thomson · Bert Tilsley · Brian Tilsley · Gloria Todd · Vernon Tomlin · Cyril Turpin · Patrick Tussell · Bev Unwin · Shelley Unwin · Annie Walker · Billy Walker · Jack Walker · Curly Watts · Emma Watts · Raquel Watts · Alison Webster · Maureen Webster · Charlie Whelan · Betty Williams · Billy Williams · Lauren Wilson · Violet Wilson · Derek Wilton · Mavis Wilton · Eddie Windass · Len Windass · Eddie Yeats
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