Bill Roache admitted the older 'Coronation Street' actors "won't be called back for some time" due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Bill Roache

Bill Roache

The 88-year-old actor - who has played Ken Barlow on the ITV show since the very first episode back in 1960 - admitted the cobbles will be "very, very different" when production restarts amid the global health crisis, and he doesn't expect to be joining the cast and crew right away.

Speaking to BBC Radio Derby, he said: "They've said it's all going to be very, very different. Scenes will be about the lockdown so people will be isolating.

"Scenes will be shot more simply with less people. Obviously cameras and booms will be placed where there's a required distance, so it's all going to be very, very different when we do get back.

"I think we the senior members of the cast won't be called back for some time, sadly. I'd like to get back. So we'll just have to see how it goes. But they're anticipating starting mid-June."

Bill's comments come after Kevin Lygo - ITV's head of studios - noted that producers for both 'Corrie' and 'Emmerdale' would ensure proper safety precautions are being taken when filming gets back under way.

He added that bosses would be particularly careful when it comes to actors who could potentially be more vulnerable to the illness.

He explained: "Some people who are in a dangerous zone, if by age or health reasons, they won't be there, I'm sure, for a time.

"I don't want Ken Barlow to get sick on my watch. We will be very careful and mindful about what's happening."

Meanwhile, Maureen Lipman - who plays Evelyn Plummer - recently revealed she's called on bosses to stick with older characters where possible.

She said: "I had a word with the producer last week online and I said: 'Don't ditch the oldies because the oldies are what 'Corrie' is about'. Otherwise we might as well call ourselves 'Hollyoaks.' "

tagged in