Coronation Street legend, Anne Kirkbride, has passed away and writer Lucy Gornall is truly devastated. Here are her most memorable Deirdre Barlow moments…

She was the character you expected would always be there. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, Deirdre Barlow was a reassuring face that felt as comforting as a blanket.

When I was growing up, we would time our dinner around Coronation Street. Deirdre was practically a part of our family.

So the news that Coronation Street actress Anne Kirkbride, who played Deirdre, has passed away is devastating.

Anne died at 7pm last night aged just 60 in a Manchester hospital. She is believed to have been suffering from breast cancer, which had spread to her brain. Her husband David Beckett was by her side.

She chose to keep her cancer battle a secret but castmates had been warned yesterday that the outlook was bleak.

Appearing in 1,439 episodes of the ITV soap over a span of 44 years, it’s safe to say that Anne was one of the most-loved soap stars this country has ever seen.

Having been a Coronation Street fanatic since the age of about 10, it’s hard to imagine the soap without her. From laughing at Deirdre’s dodgy fashion sense to her obsession with cooking stuffed marrows – my friends and I would religiously text each other through episodes to debate Deirdre’s latest escapades. She was a legend.

And what about poor Ken? How will he cope without Deirdre?

Speaking about Anne’s death, William Roache who played her on-screen husband, Ken Barlow, said: ‘She was such a loving and vibrant person. You always knew she was there because her laugh was never far away. She was an impeccable performer with superb comedy timing and an immense gift for really heightened drama.’

In a bid to relive some of Anne’s greatest moments on the soap, I’ve rounded up a few of my own top Deirdre Barlow moments:

In bed with Dev

In 2001, Deirdre hooked up with shop-owner, Dev Alahan. Well, they more than hooked-up, they ended up in bed together! Eeesh! At the time, Deidre was with trusty Ken but thankfully, after confessing her fling to Mr Barlow, all was forgiven. Phew.

Love triangle

Deidre was definitely a favourite with Weatherfield’s men. After embarking on an affair with Mike Baldwin (remember? Ex-factory owner, husband of Alma Sedgewick...), Deidre ran straight back into the arms of Ken, her infamous long-term lover. Naww, everyone knew that Ken and Deidre were meant to be.

Actor Bill said: ‘We had some rows over the years as Ken and Deirdre and it was wonderful to play those scenes opposite her. Coronation Street has lost one of its iconic characters and Anne will be greatly missed.’

Questionable cooking…

If you’ve ever watched Corrie then you’re bound to have noticed Deidre’s fondness towards STUFFED MARROWS. Seriously, it was like a family favourite…although her family never seemed too keen!

Free Deidre!

I was a tad young when this particular storyline aired (I’m not bragging!), but in 1998, Deidre was sent to prison after being framed for fraud.
The entire nation got involved in this, with former Prime Minister Tony Blair actually campaigning in the Houses of Parliament to have her freed.

Anne Kirkbride will be dearly missed and our hearts go out to her friends and family at this devastating time. RIP Anne.

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Lucy Gornall