ENTERTAINMENT

‘Coronation Street': Deirdre Barlow's Funeral Sees 8 Million Viewers Tune In To Say Goodbye

15/07/2015 07:53 BST | Updated 15/07/2015 07:59 BST

Almost 8 million of us tuned in to the funeral of Deirdre Barlow on ‘Coronation Street’ on Monday.

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Two special episodes were filmed following the death of long-serving cast member Anne Kirkbride in January.

An average audience of 7.6 million watched the first episode, peaking at 7.9 million, overnight figures suggest.

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The funeral was heart-wrenching for fans as her husband, Ken Barlow, delivered a touching 5-minute tribute to his beloved wife.

"She was a friend, a neighbour, a mother and a grandmother, a confidante," he said.

"She was a woman who spent most of her life in one street. A lynchpin of the community.

"Her family were her priority. To Deirdre, family was family and that was that."

Fans singled out Bill Roache’s acting, both during his speech and afterwards, as he paid a private goodbye at Deirdre’s graveside, as the most tear-jerking aspects of the double episode.

In the run-up to the episode, Bill Roache confessed that he didn’t have to reach far to get inspiration for the acting side of things, claiming he was going through a similar sort of bereavement to his soap character.

He previously told ‘Good Morning Britain’: “It’s very, very strange because we’re actually filming the funeral of Deirdre and I had a scene as Ken where I’m given Deirdre's glasses, but of course Annie wore them for 30 years, so you certainly don’t need any motivation for the acting. We’re always on the verge [of tears].”

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