Billy Mayhew’s actions will leave the life of Josh Tucker hanging in the balance in next week’s Coronation Street when the Weatherfield rapist ends up on the critical list following a beating. As Corrie fans know, sexual predator Josh was seen evading justice earlier this year after victim David Platt reported him to the police. But the storyline will resurface when local vicar Billy discovers that David has been tracking Josh’s movements.
Scenes to be shown on Monday 30 July will see David’s disappearing acts arouse the suspicions of Shona, who asks Billy to follow him. “Billy has counselling experience, so Shona pushes him into pursuing him,” reveals actor Dan Brocklebank. “After spotting where David has parked up, Billy plonks himself in David’s car and demands to know what’s going on.”
David then explains to Billy that he’s been watching Josh to make sure that he doesn’t attack anyone again. But when David reveals that a guy he’s been following has been spending time with Josh, it’s Billy who ends up intervening:
“Billy manages to persuade David to go home, but can’t resist sticking his nose in himself. Ultimately, he’s trying to stop what happened to David happening to someone else. So that’s why he speaks to this chap who he thinks Josh is grooming. His intentions are good, but he’s basically doing what he’s just told David not to do.”
The trouble is that the vicar’s actions end up having horrible repercussions when it’s revealed that Josh is on the critical list after being beaten to a pulp by the guy Billy spoke to. Says Brocklebank: “Billy feels terrible because he’s caused this. Yes, he stopped someone going through the trauma of what David had to endure. But he’s now managed to get someone beaten up so badly that they’re near death.
“David’s also annoyed and calls him a hypocrite, which is right actually. However, Gail is very much saying, ‘Good on you, Billy’ because he’s stopped Josh from hurting somebody else.”
In order to ease his conscience, Billy will then be seen visiting Josh in hospital, but what exactly does he hope to achieve by reaching out? “Billy feels guilt towards Josh and these injuries could be an opportunity for Billy to maybe help rehabilitate him and find out why he’s done the things that he did to David and potentially stop it from happening again.”
Brocklebank, though, thinks that his character should be a little more hesitant when it comes to getting involved in potentially fraught situations: “My advice for him would be to stop sticking your nose in. Billy – don’t be a hero!”
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