Logo 1964.JPG

1968 was Coronation Street's ninth year.

Main characters

Ranking Character Played by Duration Number of Episodes Running total Previous year's ranking
1 Annie Walker Doris Speed Full year 87 697 1
2 Len Fairclough Peter Adamson Full year 85 670 5
3 Jack Walker Arthur Leslie Full year 84 688 2
4 Ken Barlow William Roache Full year 71 574 14
5 Elsie Tanner Patricia Phoenix February to October and December 70 672 3
6 Valerie Barlow Anne Reid Full year 68 492 8
7 Minnie Caldwell Margot Bryant Full year 65 594 16
8 Hilda Ogden Jean Alexander Full year 64 309 14
9 Stan Ogden Bernard Youens Full year 60 317 6
10 Lucille Hewitt Jennifer Moss Full year except for August 59 449 12
11 Emily Nugent Eileen Derbyshire Full year except for October 57 414 17
11 Maggie Clegg Irene Sutcliffe From April 57 57 -
13 Ena Sharples Violet Carson Until February and from May 56 622 4
14 Gordon Clegg Bill Kenwright From April 52 52 -
14 Ray Langton Neville Buswell From April 52 66 -
16 Albert Tatlock Jack Howarth Full year except for July and September 43 554 8
17 Audrey Bright/Fleming Gillian McCann From June 37 37 -
17 Dickie Fleming Nigel Humphreys From June 37 37 -
19 Jerry Booth Graham Haberfield Until May 34 365 6
19 Dennis Tanner Philip Lowrie January and March to June 34 463 12
21 Effie Spicer Anne Dyson June to September and from November 28 28 -
22 David Barlow Alan Rothwell Until April 22 252 8
23 Irma Barlow Sandra Gough Until April 21 287 10
24 Myra Booth Susan Jameson January and February 8 60 -
25 Linda Cheveski Anne Cunningham May only 2 96 20

Production

Stan Barstow

Playing Gordon Clegg, Bill Kenwright performed Love's Black And White, which he wrote himself, in Episode 794. The single failed to chart

Michael Cox was the credited producer until Episode 756, while Richard Everitt continued as executive producer until Episode 778. With the following episode, a new production team of H.V. Kershaw as executive producer and Richard Doubleday as producer took charge. Doubleday was in turn succeeded by John Finch with Episode 821.

1968 was a make-or-break year for Coronation Street. After staving off cancellation in 1967, producers made a concerted effort to modernise the programme. Everitt created the position of story consultant for novelist Stan Barstow, who worked to address a perceived lack of social realism within the show's storylines. His most notable success in this area was the creation of the Clegg family, the new owners of the Corner Shop, led by recovering alcoholic Les Clegg. Irene Sutcliffe joined the cast as Les's long-suffering wife Maggie, with Bill Kenwright playing their intellectual son Gordon. Once their initial storyline concluded, Les was written out and Maggie made the shop her own.

Barstow was also behind Emily Nugent's fling with Hungarian Miklos Zadic, and Elsie Tanner's breakdown over the failure of her marriage to Steve - a scene which was played as an 11-minute two-hander between Elsie and Len Fairclough. Many of his more radical ideas were vetoed, among them introducing the street's first black family, Jerry Booth coming out as gay, Lucille Hewitt becoming a drug user, and Emily falling pregnant out of wedlock. Barstow left the programme at the end of his three-month contract.

Grape Street set

The area of Grape Street, Manchester in which Coronation Street's first outdoor set was built was initially rented by Granada from British Rail. The premises was eventually incorporated into Granada's backlot.

By January, work had already begun on weatherproofing the wooden studio set for outside filming and in anticipation of street filming moving outdoors the Glad Tidings Mission Hall and Elliston's Raincoat Factory, which lay on the opposite side of the street, were marked for demolition. Whether the removal of these structures was a direct result of the decision to change the set is not known, but the events happened at the same time with the first episode to use the Grape Street set being Episode 742 on 24th January, in which the mission and its vestry were flattened. In this episode, cameras focused on the right-hand-side of the street to disguise the fact that the houses had not yet been moved from the studio.

Filming takes place on the new outdoor set

Installing the studio flats in Grape Street was a phased process which took place across April and May. Construction took place one house at a time from right to left, starting with the Corner Shop and ending with the Rovers Return. The set was erected against scaffolding and had no roofs. This first version the set was only a façade, with no back yards or ginnel, so directors had to be careful not to show the tops of the houses. Due to the linear way the set was constructed, directors were able to use the partially-built set in their shots before the set was finished; for example, the outside of the Corner Shop appears in Episode 770. The fully-built set was first seen in Episode 776 on 22nd May.

The slum clearances taking place all over Salford were reflected in a storyline in which Ena Sharples lost her home through a compulsory purchase order. After a few weeks living with Minnie Caldwell, Ena left for St Annes to stay with her friend Henry Foster, the real-world explanation being that Violet Carson went on a three-month cruise and promotional tour to Australia. She returned to filming in May.

Built on the site of the mission and factory was a block of modern maisonettes. These were an attempt to address a common complaint that Coronation Street was outdated, reflecting current trends in housing while keeping the row of terraces itself intact. The maisonettes were also a façade but nevertheless a proper brick and concrete structure. Seven flats were built across two storeys, with the construction being seen prominently within storylines.

The issue with choosing to build new residences rather than a workplace became apparent when the maisonettes were finished. Due to a tight casting budget, only three flats were ever occupied - two by existing characters and one by Effie Spicer, an old flame of Jack Walker played by Anne Dyson.

Cast changes

Audrey and Dickie Fleming - the youth of 1968

While the maisonettes did not bring many new faces to the street, 1968 nevertheless saw the highest cast turnover of any year up to that point. In addition to the Cleggs, Neville Buswell returned full-time as roguish builder Ray Langton, while young couple Dickie Fleming and Audrey Bright took over No.3, the first people to live there for four years. Audrey and Dickie caused a stir in the street for being unmarried when they bought the house, and Audrey being still a schoolgirl at the time.

Alan Rothwell quit Coronation Street for the second time, after three years playing David Barlow. Irma was written out with David so that the Barlows could leave together, emigrating to Australia. Meanwhile, Philip Lowrie departed as Dennis Tanner, reportedly angering Patricia Phoenix so much that she vowed never to speak to him again, only doing so when the demands of filming forced her to. In his exit storyline, Dennis fell for and married Jenny Sutton and moved to Bristol. Jenny was played by Mitzi Rogers, who Lowrie had a hand in casting. Anne Cunningham made the last of her sporadic 1960s appearances as Linda Cheveski at the Tanners' wedding. The same episode featured the final appearance by Jerry Booth, with Graham Haberfield leaving the programme to further his career away from the Street. In his final year, Jerry's divorce from Myra Booth was finally sorted out, with Susan Jameson making a short return as Myra made a failed attempt to stymie the divorce.

At the end of the year, Granada transmitted a Christmas-themed clipshow entitled Christmas in the Street, featuring Jack and Annie Walker reminiscing about past Christmases in the Street.

Viewing figures

Ratings chart for the year

Average ratings declined by 400,000 viewers on 1967's figure to 15.74 million viewers. January to April all rose year-on-year, especially January to March with February building upon 1967 by three million viewers. Unsurprisingly, the biggest drop year-on-year - of four million viewers - occurred in September due to Elsie and Steve Tanner's wedding being a huge draw in that month in 1967, but all of the last seven months of the year fell by over a million viewers on the previous year.

Episode 737 (8th January 1968) was seen in 8.7 million homes / 19.14 million viewers and was the most-watched episode of the year, while the lowest audience figure occurred on Christmas Day for the second year in a row. After this year, Coronation Street was only transmitted that day on one more occasion before avoiding it until the mid-1980s.

Despite the drops, 32 episodes reached number one in the ratings charts - five more than in 1967.

Episodes

# Ep.
No.
Date Writer Director Viewing
Figures
(homes/
viewers)
Chart
Position
1 735 Monday 1st January Susan Pleat Richard Guinea 8,250,000
18,150,000
1
2 736 Wednesday 3rd January Tony Warren Richard Guinea 7,100,000
15,620,000
7
3 737 Monday 8th January John Linter Les Chatfield 8,700,000
19,140,000
1
4 738 Wednesday 10th January Adele Rose Les Chatfield 8,050,000
17,710,000
3
5 739 Monday 15th January Dennis Pitts Bill Podmore 8,400,000
18,480,000
1
6 740 Wednesday 17th January Leslie Duxbury Bill Podmore 7,700,000
16,940,000
4
7 741 Monday 22nd January James Bryant Richard Guinea 7,850,000
17,270,000
1
8 742 Wednesday 24th January Peter Tonkinson Richard Guinea 6,000,000
13,200,000
19
9 743 Monday 29th January Geoffrey Lancashire Tim Jones 8,100,000
17,820,000
1
10 744 Wednesday 31st January Elizabeth Allen Tim Jones 7,700,000
16,940,000
2
11 745 Monday 5th February S. Keith James Bill Podmore 8,350,000
18,370,000
1
12 746 Wednesday 7th February Jack Rosenthal Bill Podmore 7,900,000
17,380,000
4
13 747 Monday 12th February Adele Rose June Howson
Les Chatfield
8,400,000
18,480,000
1
14 748 Wednesday 14th February John Finch June Howson 7,750,000
17,050,000
5
15 749 Monday 19th February Malcolm Lynch Richard Guinea 8,450,000
18,590,000
1
16 750 Wednesday 21st February Tony Warren Richard Guinea 7,650,000
16,830,000
4
17 751 Monday 26th February Peter Berry Unknown 8,650,000
19,030,000
1
18 752 Wednesday 28th February Geoffrey Lancashire Unknown 8,050,000
17,710,000
2
19 753 Monday 4th March Adele Rose June Howson 8,250,000
18,150,000
1
20 754 Wednesday 6th March Jim Andrew June Howson 7,850,000
17,270,000
3
21 755 Monday 11th March John Linter Richard Guinea 8,600,000
18,920,000
1
22 756 Wednesday 13th March Tony Warren Richard Guinea 8,050,000
17,710,000
4
23 757 Monday 18th March Barry Hill Bill Podmore 8,400,000
18,480,000
1
24 758 Wednesday 20th March James Bryant Bill Podmore 7,750,000
17,050,000
4
25 759 Monday 25th March Susan Pleat Les Chatfield 8,300,000
18,260,000
4
26 760 Wednesday 27th March Adele Rose Les Chatfield 7,550,000
16,610,000
5
27 761 Monday 1st April Geoffrey Lancashire Richard Guinea 8,400,000
18,480,000
3
28 762 Wednesday 3rd April Elizabeth Allen Richard Guinea 7,450,000
16,390,000
4
29 763 Monday 8th April John Finch Bill Podmore 8,200,000
18,040,000
1
30 764 Wednesday 10th April James Bryant Bill Podmore 7,000,000
15,400,000
4
31 765 Monday 15th April Malcolm Lynch Tim Jones 5,850,000
12,870,000
18
32 766 Wednesday 17th April Adele Rose Tim Jones 7,000,000
15,400,000
2
33 767 Monday 22nd April Leslie Duxbury Les Chatfield 7,850,000
17,270,000
2
34 768 Wednesday 24th April Jack Rosenthal Les Chatfield 6,850,000
15,070,000
6
35 769 Monday 29th April Susan Pleat Richard Guinea 7,700,000
16,940,000
2
36 770 Wednesday 1st May James Bryant Richard Guinea 6,850,000
15,070,000
6
37 771 Monday 6th May John Finch Bill Podmore 8,050,000
17,710,000
2
38 772 Wednesday 8th May Adele Rose Bill Podmore 7,050,000
15,510,000
6
39 773 Monday 13th May Leslie Duxbury Tim Jones 7,500,000
16,500,000
2
40 774 Wednesday 15th May John Linter Tim Jones 7,000,000
15,400,000
7
41 775 Monday 20th May Susan Pleat Richard Guinea 7,500,000
16,500,000
4
42 776 Wednesday 22nd May Susan Pleat Brian Mills 6,900,000
15,180,000
6
43 777 Monday 27th May Jack Rosenthal Bill Podmore 7,250,000
15,950,000
3
44 778 Wednesday 29th May Jack Rosenthal Bill Podmore 7,150,000
15,730,000
4
45 779 Monday 3rd June Adele Rose Tim Jones 5,650,000
12,430,000
13
46 780 Wednesday 5th June James Bryant Tim Jones 6,400,000
14,080,000
6
47 781 Monday 10th June Susan Pleat Brian Mills 6,400,000
14,080,000
5
48 782 Wednesday 12th June Geoffrey Lancashire Brian Mills 5,900,000
12,980,000
11
49 783 Monday 17th June Ray Mansell Michael Darlow 6,500,000
14,300,000
4
50 784 Wednesday 19th June Leslie Duxbury Michael Darlow 6,250,000
13,750,000
6
51 785 Monday 24th June Adele Rose Tim Jones 7,150,000
15,730,000
1
52 786 Wednesday 26th June Geoffrey Tetlow Tim Jones 6,950,000
15,290,000
3
53 787 Monday 1st July Malcolm Lynch Brian Mills 6,300,000
13,860,000
3
54 788 Wednesday 3rd July Jack Rosenthal Brian Mills 6,050,000
13,310,000
5
55 789 Monday 8th July Leslie Duxbury Michael Darlow 6,600,000
14,520,000
2
56 790 Wednesday 10th July Geoffrey Lancashire Michael Darlow 6,400,000
14,080,000
4
57 791 Monday 15th July James Bryant Tim Jones 7,150,000
15,730,000
1
58 792 Wednesday 17th July Adele Rose Tim Jones 5,800,000
12,760,000
7
59 793 Monday 22nd July Susan Pleat Brian Mills 6,950,000
15,290,000
2
60 794 Wednesday 24th July John Linter Brian Mills 5,000,000
11,000,000
12
61 795 Wednesday 31st July Peter Eckersley Michael Darlow Unrecorded n/a
62 796 Monday 5th August Jack Rosenthal Michael Darlow 6,000,000
13,200,000
1
63 797 Wednesday 7th August H.V. Kershaw Tim Jones 5,350,000
11,770,000
5
64 798 Monday 12th August Adele Rose Tim Jones 6,400,000
14,080,000
1
65 799 Monday 19th August Peter Eckersley Richard Guinea 7,000,000
15,400,000
1
66 800 Wednesday 21st August Geoffrey Lancashire Richard Guinea 5,800,000
12,760,000
2
67 801 Monday 26th August Jack Rosenthal Les Chatfield 5,700,000
12,540,000
1
68 802 Wednesday 28th August Leslie Duxbury Les Chatfield 5,500,000
12,100,000
2
69 803 Monday 2nd September Susan Pleat Brian Mills 5,150,000
11,330,000
7
70 804 Wednesday 4th September Peter Eckersley Brian Mills 6,050,000
13,310,000
1
71 805 Monday 9th September Geoffrey Lancashire Tim Jones 6,100,000
13,420,000
3
72 806 Wednesday 11th September Leslie Duxbury Tim Jones 6,400,000
14,080,000
1
73 807 Monday 16th September Susan Pleat Michael Darlow 6,800,000
14,960,000
1
74 808 Wednesday 18th September Malcolm Lynch Michael Darlow 6,600,000
14,520,000
2
75 809 Monday 23rd September Adele Rose Brian Mills 7,100,000
15,620,000
3
76 810 Wednesday 25th September John Finch Brian Mills 7,400,000
16,280,000
1
77 811 Monday 30th September Adele Rose Tim Jones 7,050,000
15,510,000
2
78 812 Wednesday 2nd October Malcolm Lynch Tim Jones 7,700,000
16,940,000
1
79 813 Monday 7th October Susan Pleat Les Chatfield 7,150,000
15,730,000
2
80 814 Wednesday 9th October Geoffrey Lancashire Les Chatfield 7,300,000
16,060,000
1
81 815 Monday 14th October John Finch Brian Mills 7,100,000
15,620,000
2
82 816 Wednesday 16th October Geoffrey Lancashire Brian Mills 8,050,000
17,710,000
1
83 817 Monday 21st October Malcolm Lynch Tim Jones 7,050,000
15,510,000
4
84 818 Wednesday 23rd October Leslie Duxbury Tim Jones 7,850,000
17,270,000
1
85 819 Monday 28th October Susan Pleat Les Chatfield 7,150,000
15,730,000
2
86 820 Wednesday 30th October Adele Rose Les Chatfield 7,900,000
17,380,000
1
87 821 Monday 4th November Geoffrey Lancashire Brian Mills 7,250,000
15,950,000
2
88 822 Wednesday 6th November John Finch Brian Mills 7,550,000
16,610,000
1
89 823 Monday 11th November Adele Rose Tim Jones 7,050,000
15,510,000
6
90 824 Wednesday 13th November Susan Pleat Tim Jones 7,550,000
16,610,000
3
91 825 Monday 18th November Peter Eckersley Michael Cox 7,050,000
15,510,000
4
92 826 Wednesday 20th November Malcolm Lynch Michael Cox 7,200,000
15,840,000
3
93 827 Monday 25th November Peter Eckersley Les Chatfield 7,000,000
15,400,000
3
94 828 Wednesday 27th November Leslie Duxbury Les Chatfield 7,800,000
17,160,000
1
95 829 Monday 2nd December James Bryant Tim Jones 7,150,000
15,730,000
2
96 830 Wednesday 4th December Geoffrey Lancashire Tim Jones 7,600,000
16,720,000
1
97 831 Monday 9th December Adele Rose Tony Wharmby 7,650,000
16,830,000
3
98 832 Wednesday 11th December Leslie Duxbury Tony Wharmby 7,550,000
16,610,000
4
99 833 Monday 16th December James Bryant Les Chatfield 7,400,000
16,280,000
4
100 834 Wednesday 18th December Geoffrey Lancashire Les Chatfield 7,800,000
17,160,000
3
101 835 Monday 23rd December Geoffrey Lancashire Tim Jones 6,700,000
14,740,000
6
102 836 Wednesday 25th December Susan Pleat Tim Jones 2,835,000
6,237,000
n/k
103 837 Monday 30th December Malcolm Lynch Tony Wharmby 8,150,000
17,930,000
1

Storylines

January

  • The Street redevelopment scheme goes ahead, with the Council buying the Glad Tidings Mission Hall and Elliston's Raincoat Factory in readiness for their demolition. Len Fairclough assures the residents that the terraces are staying. Mission resident Ena Sharples moves in with Minnie Caldwell after refusing the Council's alternative housing offers. She breaks down after seeing the Mission demolished.
  • The women of the Street fall for Hungarian demolisher Miklos Zadic. Irma Barlow and Valerie Barlow set him up with Emily Nugent.
  • Hilda Ogden meets park keeper George Greenwood and they develop a close friendship. The situation becomes complicated when George's wife Agnes finds Hilda's scarf in George's shed. Agnes calls on Stan Ogden and tells him what Hilda's up to, but adds that she knows their relationship is innocent so advises Stan to make the most of Hilda's guilt. Hilda feels terrible and writes a note of confession, which Stan ignores. Her guilt leads her to decide not to see George any more.

Annie is set on getting rid of the hippies

  • Lucille Hewitt and her hippie friends move into No.11. Disapproving Annie Walker accuses the hippies of being Devil worshippers and tries to get Dennis Tanner to help her convince Lucille to return to the Rovers but he refuses and is barred from the pub after calling Annie a cow. Annie turns to the landlord Mr Wormold, who evicts the hippies and Dennis, who is behind with the rent. The hippies move on and Lucille returns to the Rovers.
  • When Jenny Sutton arrives to join her sister Monica and the other hippies, Dennis takes a shine to her and gets her a job at his Hotel. The bar steward Maurice Rowe is also impressed with Jenny and moves Dennis to waitering so he can have Jenny to himself. When Dennis catches Rowe groping Jenny, he starts blackmailing him. Jenny soon leaves to return to London and lovestruck Dennis decides to follow her there.
  • Jerry Booth goes to court and is granted his Decree Nisi. A few weeks later, while out skating with Irma Barlow, he bumps into his ex-wife Myra. Myra starts hanging around Jerry but insists she's not contesting the divorce. Len isn't so sure and warns Jerry, but Jerry goes out with Myra anyway to prove he's not under Len's thumb.
  • Elsie Tanner phones for Dennis but doesn't say much about how she's getting on in the US.
  • The brewery decides to redecorate the Rovers. When they refuse to meet Annie's specifications, she pays for it herself.

February

  • The Rovers is redecorated.
  • Emily and Miklos become close. Albert Tatlock shows Miklos his coin collection, but when the collection goes missing Albert accuses Miklos of stealing it. Miklos threatens to sue Albert. The real thief - a worker from the building site - is quickly caught.
  • Myra shows up at No.9 and begs Jerry to let her stay the night. Len warns Jerry that they could be accused of collusion but Jerry refuses to get rid of her. When Myra tries to seduce him, Jerry realises she wants them to get back together and throws her out. Myra phones the divorce courts and says she spent the night with Jerry. Len advises Jerry to say Myra is lying as there are no witnesses but Jerry discovers that Jack Walker saw them together. At first, Jerry asks Jack to commit perjury but later changes his own statement, admitting that he's been seeing Myra but that they didn't sleep together.

Miklos rescues Peter and Susan in the nick of time

  • Twins Peter and Susan Barlow are nearly killed after following Minnie's cat Bobby into the factory just as it's about to be demolished. Ken and Val realise in time to get them out.
  • Deciding that she and Minnie can't live together, Ena arranges to lodge with Henry Foster at St. Annes. Minnie is left alone and heartbroken and advertises for a man for companionship. She later becomes an agent for a catalogue but is warned by Hilda to get off her patch as Hilda is an agent for the same catalogue. When Minnie drinks away her troubles, Hilda feels bad and goes into partnership with her.
  • Elsie arrives home, telling Len that Steve has been posted for Panama. Unable to contact Dennis, she demands to be left alone.
  • Lucille takes up with art student Tim Jordan. When Annie refuses to pay up for rag week, Tim bets Lucille he can force her hand. The students kidnap Annie and demand £5 for he release. Jack refuses to pay up but Annie pays it, having enjoyed her stay at the University. Lucille agrees to appear in the rag procession.
  • David Barlow starts feeling dissatisfied with his life. He thinks about moving.

March

Elsie tells Len about her failed marriage

  • On Elsie's birthday, Len decides to find out the truth from Elsie and bangs on her door until she lets him in. She breaks down and admits that her marriage was a failure; Steve ignored her in America and volunteered for the Panama posting. Elsie returns to her old life.
  • David applies for a position on a football team in Australia and gets it. Irma is against emigrating but soon realises that it's too good an opportunity to miss. She breaks the news to David that she's pregnant. David puts the shop up for sale and tells the Gazette about his plans, hoping to rouse interest. When the article is published, David discovers that Albert has got onto the paper and his words have been twisted to make it seem as though the Barlows think they're above Coronation Street.
  • Dennis returns with Jenny, and shock Elsie by pretending they're married. They soon come clean but Elsie makes them sleep apart and makes Jenny uncomfortable.
  • Dennis gets a job selling hairdressing sundries. Val helps him out by buying and returning stock without a refund. He gets a permanent job at "Crowning Glory". Ken finds the razors and thinks Val is going into men's hairdressing. She goes along with it for a laugh.
  • Emily worries as her relationship with Miklos prepares to move to the next level. When Miklos tries to get her into bed, Emily stops him, not feeling ready. She admits to Val that she would rather marry Miklos but knows he is only interested in a short-term affair. Miklos is transferred to Newcastle.
  • Ronald Wilde asks Jerry to submit a tender for Fairclough and Booth to work on the new maisonettes being built on the factory site. There is little money involved but it will help the business expand. Len isn't interested so Jerry goes for it alone.

April

  • Far from being put off Emily, Miklos asks her to go on holiday with him. Emily goes, knowing full well that she will lose her virginity. She returns with no regrets, having parted ways with Miklos. At Annie's invitation, Emily moves into the Rovers but due to a bug affecting the Walkers and Lucille, she has to hold the fort behind the bar on her first day. She surprises everyone by coping well.
  • Jenny gets a job selling kitchen equipment but decides to return to London when Elsie throws her out. Minnie takes her in and stands up to Elsie, making her see that she's been treating Jenny unfairly.
  • Ena writes to say she's returning and wants one of the OAP maisonettes. The council has given her a flat two miles away so Len puts in a good word for her. Val takes an interest in one of the larger maisonettes but Ken wants to stay where he is.
  • Hilda tries to put David and Irma off Australia by getting Vince Boyle to tell Irma horrifying tales about emigrating. Irma panics but Hilda feels bad and admits that she put him up to it. The Barlows leave as planned.

A new owner for the Corner Shop

  • Les and Maggie Clegg buy the shop and move into the accommodation, with their teenage son Gordon taking the flat. Les is a reformed alcoholic who used to beat Maggie when drunk and Gordon shows him little respect. When Les goes missing, Maggie thinks he's at the pub but he's just on a walk.
  • Building work on the new maisonettes begins. Stan gets a labourer's job after quitting the yard in anger when Len turned him down for a plumber's job. After scalding his foot, Stan got ready to enjoy being doted on but returned to work at Hilda's insistence. He tries to put effort in but is sacked after dropping a partition from the second floor level. Len takes Stan back on at the yard.
  • Ray Langton arrives and, with Len away visiting Stanley, Jerry gives him the plumber's job. Ray is followed to Weatherfield by his ex-girlfriend Shirley Walton and they get back together. Len returns and wants rid of Ray.
  • Albert decides to expose the inaccuracies in a book about the Battle of Lys. He gets together with other veterans of the battle but it turns out that Albert missed the battle after getting lost on patrol.
  • Dennis and Jenny set a date for their wedding. Jenny's father already has Monica's wedding to pay for so refuses to fund Jenny's wedding.

May

  • Len decides to keep both Ray and Stan on but Stan's presence at the building site causes friction with the other workers, who call a union meeting and threaten to strike unless Stan is sacked. Len agrees to restrict Stan's work to the yard.

Dennis and Jenny at their wedding reception

  • Dennis borrows money from a lender to pay for a church wedding but the vicar puts him off it as he's not a churchgoer. They settle instead on the Registry Office. Linda Cheveski and Wally Tanner arrive for the wedding, with Jerry agreeing to be best man. Everything seems to be going to plan until Dennis's boss tells him to be in Bristol on his wedding night. Dennis waits until after the ceremony to break the news to Jenny but she is fine with it.
  • Les succumbs to temptation and stays out all night drinking. On his return home, he smashes the shop window. Maggie and Gordon cover for him but are surprised when Stan confesses to the deed, as Hilda thought he was behind it and the Cleggs were insured.
  • At Lucille's request, Gordon helps with the Gamma Garments accounts. Gordon likes Lucille and drinks with her on his 18th birthday to prove he's a man and not a boy, seeing off competition from Ray. Seeing them together, Maggie worries that Lucille will distract Gordon from his studies and asks Annie to keep them separate. Annie accuses Maggie of being too interfering.
  • Elsie starts looking for a job.
  • Ray shows Valerie plans for the maisonettes but when she raises the issue of moving with Ken he accuses her of using the maisonettes as an excuse to get close to Ray as she fancies him. Fortunately, he quickly sees the error of his ways and puts the family on a shortlist but disapproves when Val starts showing couples around No.9, as he doesn't want to sell the house until they have a maisonette guaranteed.
  • Jerry finishes with Fairclough and Booth and decide to move on. He leaves during Dennis and Jenny's wedding, after giving a heartfelt best man speech urging the couple not to take each other for granted.
  • Ena returns and again lodges with Minnie (and Jenny).

June

  • Dennis has a meeting with his boss and, impressed that Dennis showed his commitment to the company by giving up his wedding night, his boss offers him a position as area manager in Bristol. Dennis eagerly accepts and Jenny gets a transfer to the Bristol branch of Ashworths as the Tanners prepare to move. Elsie lets him use Steve's money to pay his debts.
  • Residents begin moving into the completed maisonettes, with Ena at No.6 and widow Effie Spicer at No.4. The Barlows are allocated No.14, with Ken selling No.9 to Len, who wants to use his old house in Mawdsley Street for storage.
  • Les goes missing after celebrating a bowls victory at his club. Maggie confides in Ena, who knows the Cleggs by reputation. Les doesn't return until noon the next day when, barely able to stand up, he struggles with Maggie for a bottle and has to be hit to the floor by Gordon, ending up in hospital with a concussion. Maggie is told that Les would be better off in a mental hospital and agrees to him being moved. Ena and Len both do their best to help Maggie in the wake of the incident, with Maggie giving Ena a job at the shop.
  • After a disappointing date with Ray, Lucille starts going out with Gordon. Annie tries to put her off him by suggesting that alcoholism is hereditary, and Gordon goes for a jealous Ray when he taunts him about Les.
  • Albert accepts an invitation from his old war friend Harry Dunscombe, curator of the Fusiliers' Museum in Bury, to be his live-in assistant.
  • Emily advertises in the Gazette for a stimulating opportunity.
  • Len gets another contract with Wilde but has to sack Stan as a condition. Stan resigns and buys I-spy Dwyer's window cleaning round.
  • Two teenagers, Dickie Fleming and Audrey Bright, decide to buy No.3, which has lain empty since 1964. Len does the house up for free.
  • Elsie and Dot Greenhalgh both get jobs at MacAverty's Department Store. Elsie ignores a letter from Steve asking if she's returning to America.

Hilda accuses Elsie of plotting to get Stan

  • Jenny and Linda send Elsie's nephew Gary Bailey to keep her company at No.11. Gary is interested in investments and buys Elsie a white jag with money she loaned him. As she can't drive, Elsie gets a lesson from Stan but they run out of petrol on the moors and don't return home until the next morning. Believing that Elsie is after Stan, Hilda starts a slanging match on the Street. Elsie's lessons aren't a success as she is a terrible driver; she crashes into Ken's car, just after he has decided to sell it to buy furniture.

July

  • Effie makes enemies in Ena and Annie by being friendly with Minnie and Jack. Annie is especially put out as Jack and Effie used to be an item. Deciding to go easy on Effie, Annie calmly asks her to stay away from Jack, but Jack signs Effie's application to his bowling club.
  • Elsie decides to sell her car. Gary leaves in the Jag and sends Elsie the £175 he gets for it.
  • Emily applies for a job running a marriage bureau but is turned down as she's too romantic.

Len sorts Ray out

  • Ray is thrown out of his lodgings after gambling away his rent money. When Len refuses, Elsie takes him in. Believing Elsie to be the local tart, Ray decides to have fun and keeps coming on to her. Elsie soon has enough and makes Len get rid of him but is upset when they fight in her kitchen.
  • Stan and Hilda eat at a Chinese restaurant to celebrate Stan's new job. Stan gets Hilda to help out on his window round by telling her that his female customers fancy him. Hilda thinks the women at 19 Inkerman Street might be his fancy piece.
  • Ena takes over the shop while Maggie takes a break. She catches two boys in the shop at night and makes them do odd jobs to make up for it.
  • Without prior notice, Mr. Papagopolous closes the Gamma Garments branch and fires Emily and Lucille. They use the shop's phone to make long distance calls to get revenge.
  • Dickie and Audrey secretly go away to Gretna Green to get married. They announce it to the neighbours, some of whom have been spreading the word that they aren't married, by holding a house-warming and putting their marriage certificate inside the parcel in a pass-the-parcel game.
  • Minnie celebrates Bobby's birthday. Gordon writes a song for Bobby.
  • Ken and Pamela Dickenson rehearse The Country Wife at the Tech.

August

Frank Riley traps Val

  • Frank Riley, an escaped convicted rapist, breaks into No.14 and traps Val there while Ken is rehearsing his play. Worried about what Frank will do, Val protects Peter and Susan by saying she has no children and tries to alert Ena by banging on the water pipes. Ena's suspicions are raised when she hears the phone ringing out and she sets Jack on to the police, having been warned by the police that Frank is on the loose. When Frank sees the police outside the flat, he takes Val hostage with an iron bar and tries to use her as a shield when they get in through the kitchen window, but the police overpower him. Val is unharmed but Ken thinks she might have been raped.
  • Len lets Ray lodge with him at No.9.
  • Audrey leaves school and gets a job at the petrol station.
  • Effie decides to leave the area, having had enough of Ena's hostility, but Ena cools and invites her into the Snug.
  • Emily plans a holiday in Scandinavia with her sister.
  • Annie is thrilled when she is asked to give a speech on woman's Suffrage for the Lady Crusaders. Jack finds out that they meant to ask Alice Walker but he's too late to warn Annie as she has already left. Annie walks out of the meeting when she finds out about the mix-up but saves face by telling Jack that everything went well.
  • Albert visits the Street and tells the residents how he's getting on at the Museum.
  • Someone complains about Ena's early hours harmonium playing to the Council. Ena is warned that if she keeps it up she could lose her flat. In defiance, Ena plays it in front of the housing people. Val confesses that she complained but that she now regrets it. They work out an agreement that Ena can play over certain hours.
  • Dickie and Ray go on a night out while Audrey works. Dickie is envious of Ray's money and decides to give up his apprenticeship to get a job.
  • Les discharges himself from hospital and goes to work with his brother.

September

  • Dickie decides not to give up his apprenticeship.
  • Rag-and-bone man Tommy Deakin cons Emily into looking after his donkey Dolores while he goes on holiday by saying he has to go to hospital.
  • Dave Smith buys the old Gamma Garments shop unit and turns it into a florist called The Pink Posy. He installs Elsie as manageress.
  • Steve receives a posting in the country and takes the opportunity to see Elsie to work on their marriage. Elsie wants to leave Steve in the past and move on and becomes distressed when Steve won't take no for an answer. While on her way to see Steve to tell him it's over for good, Elsie hears that Len is at his flat and returns home instead, where she is met by a PC Jimmie Conway who tells her that Steve has been found dead at the bottom of his stairs. An inquest begins and Elsie is the first to be questioned by the police.
  • At Ray's suggestion, Audrey enters the "Miss Petrol Pump Beauty Contest". She wins the contest and £50 but Dickie doesn't like other men looking at her. She is offered a career in beauty contest but turns it down.
  • Lucille flirts with GI Gary Strauss, making Gordon jealous. They argue when Gordon tries to fight him for her but later make up.
  • Val helps out at the shop while Ena is on holiday. When Ena returns, she accuses Val of stealing her job although it turns out she couldn't cope with the job anyway because she was on her feet too long.

Emily helps out Reverend James at the nursery

  • Emily is hard up after finishing at Gamma and is taken on as a receptionist at the Import and Export Office. She quickly cottons on to the crooked deals the bosses are at and quits, after informing the police. Reverend James asks her to be his assistant at St. Mary's nursery.

October

Elsie and Len await the verdict on Steve's death

  • The other residents are interviewed about Steve's death. Val gives Elsie an alibi. Len emerges at the prime suspect because of his history with Elsie and a poorly explained bandaged fist. He admits to going to Steve's flat to sort him out but hit the wall instead. Len is arrested and takes part in an identity parade. He puts them onto Dave Smith as Steve owed him £1,000 in gambling debts. At the inquest, the jury returns an open verdict.
  • Gregg Flint's alibi is that he was with a woman. He finishes with Dot.
  • Len loses the hospital site contract with Wilde because of his unavailability due to the investigation. Wilde tells Ray that he will offer the contract if Len signs a penalty clause but Len disappears with the yard's petty cash, leaving Ray unable to pay the workers.
  • Stan feels guilty that he was with Clara Regan when Steve was murdered. Stan and Hilda swap jobs and Hilda is surprised when Stan does well cleaning the Rovers.
  • Elsie is left everything in Steve's will. Dave tries to help Elsie pick up the pieces and invites her on a holiday to Wakefield to look at flower shops. She accepts.
  • Jill Morris turns up at the shop looking for Irma as her mum is in hospital. Hilda takes her in and hides her from Stan as he doesn't want her there. Stan finds her in his bed.
  • Lucille hears that Gordon has a date with another girl.

November

  • Albert dumps himself on the Flemings when he has time off from the Museum. Audrey finds him a demanding house guest and is put out when he announces he has another two weeks holiday. At Ena's suggestion, Audrey summons Alice Pickins and tries to match-make the elderly couple. A terrified Albert escapes back to Bury.
  • Stan starts to warm to Jill and takes her on his window round. Cliff, her mum's boyfriend, shows up to take her back.
  • Gordon realises he only wants Lucille and proposes to her on her sickbed. She accepts. Annie and Maggie are both against the engagement but drive the couple away with their objections; Annie blames Lucille when Jack is hit by a motorbike while out looking for the couple and has extensive buising on his leg, and Maggie refuses to permit the marriage. Gordon suggests to Lucille that they run away and get married at Gretna Green.
  • Ray and Emily try to keep the yard afloat without Len but they need money quickly to clear cheques. Len returns but doesn't say where he's been. He offers Ray a partnership but is turned down as Ray wants to aim higher.
  • Effie returns but is having a hard time as she's just used all her savings to pay debts she inherited after her sister-in-law's death. She refuses financial help from Jack.
  • David and Irma send a telegram to the Ogdens announcing the birth of their son Darren.

Stan rescues Bobby - but it's not Bobby

  • Stan rescues Bobby when he gets stuck on the viaduct only to discover it's the wrong pussy. Minnie takes him in anyway.
  • Ken takes up the trumpet.
  • The Ogdens plan a party to celebrate their Silver wedding anniversary.

December

  • The Ogdens have a party in the Rovers Select for their anniversary.

Lucille and Gordon run off to get married in secret

  • Lucille and Gordon run off without telling anyone but they miss the train to Gretna Green. The Walkers alert the police and neighbours start looking for them but the couple returns after changing their minds. The Walkers and Maggie are cold towards them. Gordon sits his Accountancy exams.
  • Ena finds out that Effie has £10 on her slate at the shop. Effie is annoyed at Maggie for letting Ena find out but Ena is sympathetic and helps Effie sort out her pension.
  • As she still hasn't found Bobby, Minnie accepts the new cat as her own, calling him Sunny Jim.
  • Maggie goes out with Len but just as friends. Elsie returns and hears about Len and Maggie from Ena.
  • Ken and Val attend a party thrown by Martin and Jo Hepworth. Val is sexually insulted and appalled when she sees three babies left crying in a bedroom, but Ken enjoys himself and returns the favour by inviting the Hepworths for dinner. He's embarrassed when Albert calls while the Hepworths are there. Ken is taken with their middle class lifestyle and decides to spend Christmas abroad but later changes his mind after offending Albert by not inviting him. Ken advises Albert to move to Bury permanently or get someone to share No.1. Albert asks Effie and she accepts.
  • Reverend James and Emily decide to produce Aladdin for the children at Christmas. When the residents aren't interested, Emily ensures their co-operation by blackmailing them. The panto is a success with Len, Albert and Stan leaving beer around the stage to keep them going. The residents are amused by Emily's obvious affection for James.
  • Marj Griffin shows up and tells Len she's left her husband Basil for him (Len was with Marj during his earlier absence). Basil appears at No.9 on Christmas Day and tells Len he's welcome to Marj but Len isn't interested in anything serious and, at Ray's suggestion, tries to scare Marj off by proposing to her. The plan backfires when she accepts!

Who Lives Where

Coronation Street

Mawdsley Street

Others

Coronation Street in the 1960s
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