Love has always blossomed on the cobblestones of Coronation Street – and not just on the pages of the script.
Real-life romances have sprung up on the Granada set right from the early days of Pat Phoenix and Alan Browning to Sally Calman and Joe Duttine who are a couple today.
Phoenix played the irrepressible Elsie Tanner from the first episode of the Street in December 1960, while Browning portrayed her on-screen husband Alan Howard.
Six decades later, Calman plays feisty mechanic Abi Franklin, while Duttine is taxi-firm owner Tim Metcalfe – husband of Street stalwart Sally portrayed by Rochdale actress Sally Dynevor.
There have been many romances in between, including Anne Kirkbride (Deirdre Langton) marrying her on-screen boyfriend David Beckett (Dave Barton) in 1992.
Sue Nicholls (Deirdre Roberts) met her husband Mark Eden (Alan Bradley) on Coronation Street. Another couple who were married off-screen were Tina O’Brien (Sarah Platt) and Ryan Thomas (Jason Grimshaw).
Wigan actress Jennifer James, who played Rovers’ Return barmaid Geena Gregory, wed co-star Lee Boardman (Jez Quigley) at Manchester Town Hall in May 2001.
Alan Halsall, who plays Tyrone Dobbs, was married to Lucy-Jo Hudson (Katy Harris) and is now in a relationship with former co-star Tisha Merry, who portrayed bistro waitress Steph Britton for four years.
More recently, romance bloomed between Daniel Brocklebank, who plays vicar Billy Mayhew, and Manchester actor Rob Mallard (Daniel Osbourne).
One of the first real-life relationships occurred when Alan Browning joined Coronation Street as Geordie businessman Alan Howard in 1969.
He planned to open a salon and interviewed Elsie Tanner for the job of manager. Sparks flew and the characters were married in 1970.
Plans for the couple to set up home in Bramhall were put on ice when Alan had to sell his assets after being declared insolvent.
The pair moved into 11 Coronation Street while Alan, formerly a mechanic, worked at the Canal Garage. The couple left the cobblestones in 1973 for Newcastle where Elsie had secured a new job.
Elsie returned to the Street, minus Alan, in 1976. The screen couple divorced in 1978.
In real life, Fallowfield actress Tanner married Browning in December 1972. She became a widow seven years later when alcohol-related problems caused Browning to die of liver failure in September 1979.
Oldham actress Anne Kirkbride started playing Deirdre Hunt on the Street in 1972. The typist first flirted with Alan Howard before marrying builder Ray Langton in July 1975.
Kirkbride’s future husband David Beckett portrayed joiner Dave Barton on the Street from April to September 1990. Deirdre began a romance with him after her marriage to Ken Barlow (William Roache) had been blighted by his affair with Wendy Crozier.
The couple’s real-life wedding took place in June 1992. Kirkbride died in Manchester two decades later in January 2015 after suffering from breast cancer.
Mark Eden played the villainous businessman Alan Bradley from 1986 to 1989. In his pursuit of Rita Fairclough (Barbara Knox), he wreaked havoc by having affairs, issuing threats and beating up another Street bad boy Terry Duckworth (Nigel Pivaro).
Alan met one of the most dramatic ends in soap history when he was mowed down by a Blackpool tram after chasing Rita to the seaside resort.
Off screen, Eden and Street co-star Sue Nicholls were married in 1993, remaining together until Eden’s death in January this year.
Jennifer James arrived on the Street as barmaid Geena Gregory in 2000. Geena was romantically linked with shop-owner Dev Alahan (Jimmi Harkishin) and former convict Joe Carter (Jonathan Wrather).
James’ real-life husband, Stockport actor Lee Boardman, portrayed sinister gangster and drug-dealer Jez Quigley from 1999 to 2000 after making an appearance in 1997.
He killed Tony Horrocks (Lee Warburton) and Des Barnes (Philip Middlemiss) and later tried to do the same to Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) after they found themselves in the same hospital ward.
Fortunately for Steve, the evil Jez died of his injuries and collapsed on top of his victim before he could carry out his murderous intent.
Rusholme actress Tina O’Brien, who has played Sarah Platt since 1999, wedded her Street co-star Ryan Thomas in 2003. They were married for six years.
Manchester-born Thomas portrayed builder Jason Grimshaw from 2000 to 2016. His six years on the Street featured a number of liaisons, including a fling with Sarah.
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