Coronation Street spoilers: Peter to get a beating from Jim? Chris Gascoyne interview

"Prison is not the sort of place to be public enemy number one," says the actor


Peter Barlow (Chris Gascoyne) will find himself under threat from his fellow inmates when he returns to the cells following his recent spell in hospital.


After downing all of Jim’s illicit stash of booze, Peter will discover that he’s made a lot of enemies now that the illegal alcohol is no longer available.

Jim (Charles Lawson) makes it clear to Peter he doesn’t want Steve (Simon Gregson) to find out he supplied the booze that almost killed him. Peter’s dismissive but when Peter and Clelland find their cell trashed Peter realises Jim was behind it.

Clelland warns Peter not to antagonise Jim, but when the struggling alcoholic tells his sister Tracy (Kate Ford) about what’s been going on, it isn’t long before word gets back to Steve.

With Jim’s relationship with his son under threat, the volatile Irishman is soon paying Peter a visit. So is he in danger of a beating? Actor Chris Gascoyne tells us more…

How is Peter feeling as he returns to prison?
He’s obviously been very ill and he’s apprehensive about returning. He knows that he caused a lot of problems by doing what he did and nicking the booze without Jim knowing. But he is so low anyway that life couldn’t really get any worse for him

Does he realise that his near-death experience has blown the booze supply in the prison?
Jim wastes no time telling him that as a consequence of what Peter did, he can no longer supply the booze. He says that Peter had better watch his back as he’s made a lot of enemies.

Is he frightened about the amount of enemies he’s made?
He’s obviously in a very difficult position. Prison is not the sort of place to be public enemy number one and he knows that life in there is going to be even more difficult than it was before.

Does he realise that Jim’s taking credit for saving his life?
He certainly knows that Jim has not confessed to being the one who was supplying the booze in the first place. But he’s not aware how far he’s gone in claiming to be a hero.

How does Peter react when Jim tells him that he must never tell Steve that he was the one who gave Peter that alcohol?
He’s dismissive at first – he hasn’t realised just how far Jim would be prepared to go to save himself. Peter is no pushover, but he’s in a very dangerous position.

At what point does Peter realise he needs to be frightened of Jim and what he might do to him?
Peter and Clelland return to their cell and it’s been trashed. Peter knows Jim is behind it and he’s left under no illusion as to what Jim is capable of. Celland warns Peter not to antagonise Jim any more or he’ll end up back in hospital. Jim then makes it very clear that he will make Peter’s life hell if he says anything about him supplying the booze.

Does Peter find it hard take Jim seriously as a violent threat seeing as they’ve known each other for so long?
They were never friends on the outside and hadn’t really come across each other very much. He doesn’t know Jim very well. but he knows his reputation and what he’s capable of.

Why does Peter decide to tell Tracy the truth?
She comes in to visit him and she’s talking all about the wedding. Peter is bored until she mentions that Steve is bringing Amy in to see Jim. He can’t hide his reaction and when Tracy quizzes him about why he’s being so hostile he tells her that Jim was the one who supplied him with the booze and that he, in return, was forced to sing Jim’s praises to Steve and get him to come and visit.

Is he seriously not worried about what the consequences of her telling Steve might be for him?
No, he urges Tracy to tell Steve the truth. He doesn’t care what Jim does to him – he just doesn’t want him getting away with playing happily families when he can’t even get to see Simon and has lost everything.

At what point does he realise that Steve has confronted Jim?
It’s after visiting time and Jim storms into his cell and starts threatening him, but the guards are hot on Jim’s trail so it’s obvious that something has happened. But Jim leaves Peter in no doubt about what he will do to him and that there is a score to settle.


What’s it like working with Charlie on the prison set?
It’s great – it’s a set that’s been purpose built, but it is very small and claustrophobic and it gives the scenes real intensity. Charlie and I are enjoying it. We do the scenes across one or two days each week and it’s working really well.