Emily Bishop makes a long-awaited return to Coronation Street on Wednesday 9th October when she sends a video message for old friend Ken Barlow's 80th birthday, the first time Eileen Derbyshire has appeared in the role since January 2016 when she took a temporary break from the show. But she's not the only turning up to join in the celebrations…
The Weatherfield stalwart's cameo was announced earlier this year, shortly after producer Iain MacLeod confirmed to RadioTimes.com that the soap was in regular talks with the actress and that the door was always open for her to reprise the role she first played back in 1961, a year after Corrie started.
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Initially jetting off to Peru to help nephew Spider Nugent with his charity work, Emily came back after a few years to live with niece Freda Burgess in Edinburgh.
Her former lodger Norris Cole came back after an extended period of absence in May 2019 (actor Malcolm Hebden had been away for almost two years after having major heart surgery) revealing he and Freda were engaged and that Emily's former home No 3 had been sold to the Bailey family.
Norris is the second surprise birthday well wisher at Ken's bash in the Rovers next week in a previously unannounced special appearance, and Mr Barlow is touched when old pal Emily then beams in via video.
It's also Ken's grandson Bertie's 1st birthday, but sadness looms over the event as Ken's daughter-in-law Sinead Osbourne reveals her cancer has accelerated and she only has weeks to live…
There are no plans for Emily to come back permanently as yet, but strangely this is the second comeback-via-video in recent weeks – Angela Griffin played Fiona Middleton again for the first time in 21 years when daughter Emma Brooker dialled her up on a laptop video call, having learnt that her mum's old flame Steve McDonald was her real dad. Again, it was a one-off cameo with no plans for the character to be physically on the cobbles again.
The petition to get Emily back in person starts here…
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