Stuart Blackburn has been confirmed by ITV Studios as the new producer of Coronation Street. He will take over from Phil Collinson in January 2013.
Collinson will remain at ITV in a fresh role working with Kieran Roberts to develop new drama from the broadcaster’s base in Manchester.
Blackburn, who is the current producer of Emmerdale and also a former story editor of Coronation Street, said today:
“I’m in the very privileged position of producing Emmerdale’s hour-long live episode to celebrate the programme’s 40th birthday and I get to produce Coronation Street too.
“Life just couldn’t get any better. Emmerdale is a very special programme to me, as I was born and brought up in West Yorkshire. I’m in total admiration of the cast and production team as they are all incredibly talented people. They do an amazing job and I’ll be sad to leave them.
“Coronation Street also has a place in my heart, as I believe passionately in storytelling, and although I recognise it’s a massive responsibility, I have the best job in the world.”
Outgoing producer Collinson, who joined the Street in 2010 and shepherded it through its 50th anniversary celebrations, today said:
“It’s been an honour to produce Coronation Street and I’ll be sad to leave. But the drama can only stay at the top of its game if the producer is re-energised every two to three years.
“By the time I say farewell I’ll have been with the programme for nearly three years and produced almost 750 episodes. It’s an achievement I’m hugely proud of, but I know I couldn’t have done it without the amazing production team, writers, cast and crew who work tirelessly to produce the best drama on television. I thank them all from the bottom of my heart.
“I wish Stuart every success and look forward now to taking up my new role developing drama and producing brand new drama from our base in Manchester.”
Read Stuart Blackburn's interview with Radio Times about Emmerdale's 40th anniversary here