Annie Jones tried to persuade Jason Donovan and Guy Pearce to return for Neighbours 35th anniversary

"What a hoot that would be, seeing them in the coffee shop!"

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Neighbours has served up impressive amounts of nostalgia in its epic 35th anniversary week with several old faces dropping in to be a part of the soap’s milestone, but there are still some notable absences.

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A comeback for Kylie Minogue as Charlene Robinson is constantly hoped for, despite the star’s polite refusals to reprise the iconic role that launched her career.

However, her on-screen bridesmaid Annie Jones, who played Jane Harris, is one of the ex-characters reappearing on Ramsay Street and told RadioTimes.com she tried to tempt back some other notable stars from the golden 1980s era…

“Stefan Dennis (Paul Robinson) and I caught up with Jason Donovan (Scott Robinson) and Guy Pearce (Mike Young) when we were all in the UK a while ago,” she reveals in an exclusive chat. “We tried to persuade them to do it but they are both so darn busy!

“Jason has been in Melbourne doing Chicago on stage. I’m pretty sure Guy is in Amsterdam or somewhere exotic making a movie. So the stars didn’t line up in this instance, but you never know. I’m sure they’d love to if they could make it work and they happened to be in Australia at the right time. I’ll keep trying!”

Jones echoes the delight of fans everywhere if she managed to orchestrate a reunion for Jane and childhood sweetheart Mike and his BFF Scott.

“What a hoot that would be,” she laughs. “I’d love to do a couple of scenes in the coffee shop with those guys. Mike could roar in on that motorbike of his and rip off his helmet for the big reveal!”

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Someone who Harris is sharing the screen with for the first time in over three decades is original cast member Paul Keane as her alter ego’s ex-fiancee Des Clarke. Jane broke the widowed bank manager’s heart in 1989 when she left to care for sick granny Mrs Mangel in the UK, eventually calling off their engagement by phone!

“Paul and I hadn’t seen one another in all that time,” she shares. “We live in different cities and our paths just never crossed again. But from day one when we rocked up together for rehearsals it was like we’d been hanging out yesterday, it was mind-blowing. We had a ball.”

Jane and Des are one of five fan favourite couples given a second chance at tying the knot as part of the Lassiters wedding expo, the backdrop to the week that also sees evil Finn Kelly exact his chilling revenge in special late-night episodes.

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