‘Coronation Street’ viewers will be disappointed to learn that Anne Kirkbride - who plays Deirdre Barlow in the soap - will bid farewell to the cobbles in the upcoming months.
Don’t worry, though, ‘Corrie’ fans - it’s only a temporary period of absence, and Anne will be heading back to Weatherfield after a three-month break to deal with undisclosed “personal issues”, according to the Daily Star.
A spokesperson for the ITV soap confirmed over the weekend: “Anne Kirkbride requested a slightly extended period of leave from the show, a request the company was happy to grant.”
Anne’s temporary absence from the soap comes just weeks after the Barlow family were finally reunited, when veteran actor Bill Roache - who has played the role of Ken Barlow since ‘Corrie’ launched in the 1960s - returned to the soap.
However, it won’t be long before the chain-smoking belt aficionado comes back on the scene, as she'll reportedly be back cooking up her famous stuffed marrow and fretting about “our Tracy” in the new year.
The soap actress first appeared on screens as Deirdre Hunt (as she was then known) in 1972. In recent years, Deirdre has become one of the soap’s best loved comic characters, but she’s been involved in some pretty serious storylines over the years.
Her turbulent relationship with Ken, which has been plagued with more infidelities than we can possibly even begin to count, and a famous story arc in the 1990s where she was falsely imprisoned, leading to national outcry and a Free The Weatherfield One campaign.
Here’s hoping Anne’s break gives her some well-earned rest, and we can’t wait to see her ‘Corrie’ comeback in 2015...