“We Hoped She’d Be Another Bet Lynch..” Michelle Collins Quits Corrie

Michelle Collins wasn’t an immediate success with Coronation Street fans when she first arrived in Weatherfield last year, yet after settling in with some meaty storylines, she’s surprised ITV by telling them she’ll be leaving as soon as her current contract expires.

Collins, who plays Rover’s landlady Stella Price in the soap, has been criticised by some for her dodgy Northern accent, while others found it difficult to forget her time in EastEnders, where she played Cindy Beale.

Yet she told The Sun that she’d be quitting the cobbles as the commute from London to Manchester was keeping her away from her daughter.

“I will be in the show until this time next year but I think she would sue me after that,” she explained. “My daughter has her GCSEs next year. I want to be around to support her so I’ll have to take time out. I find it really difficult working in Manchester and then coming back to London to be a mum. I don’t want to unsettle Maia.â€?

The news will come as a blow to Corrie bosses, who had hopes that she would go on to become a Street legend. Sue Johnston (of Royle Family fame) had even been signed up to play her mother.

“We hoped she would be talked about in the same breath as Annie Walker, Bet Lynch and Liz McDonald,” said a misty-eyed source. “It doesn’t look like that will happen now.â€?

Tommy smuggles drugs for Rick in next week’s Corrie..