Sunday, 2 February 2014

Happy Australia Day! The Coronation Street connections

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog January 2013, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Sunday January 26th 2014 was Australia Day.  Happy Australia Day to all of the Coronation Street fans down under.

From 50 years of Corrie in 50 days: Coronation Street has been shown in Australia since 1963 and by 1966 it was more popular there than in the UK.

Channel 9 sent an invitation for a party from Coronation Street to visit fans in Australia. Granada accepted the invitation and a group was put together consisting of Doris Speed (Annie Walker), Arthur Leslie (Jack Walker) and Pat Phoenix (Elsie Tanner) from the cast along with producer/writer H.V. Kershaw and Norman Frisby from the press office.

The group visited Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide and they were mobbed everywhere they went. They visited several local Coronation Streets, presented awards, appeared on numerous chat shows and even performed a sketch specially written by Kershaw. Driving back to the airport in Adelaide, Doris and Pat wept as 50,000 people turned out to wave them farewell.

While Corrie has many Canadian connections, the links with Australia are less obvious.  Here are some we can think of, and do please let us know if you know of any more.

Norris' brother Ramsay Clegg was sent to Australia as a child.

And David Barlow emigrated out there after marrying Irma Ogden, only for David to die in a car crash.

And of course, we've even got a Kylie on Coronation Street.

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