Despite an intense campaign from viewers, ITV executives have confirmed that Coronation Street’s Hayley Cropper, currently suffering from terminal cancer and the centre of an assisted suicide storyline will not be given an eleventh hour reprieve.
The news will come as a bitter blow to devoted fans who had hoped that the popular character might receive a miracle cure, similar to that of Downton Abbey’s Matthew Crawley, who staggeringly not only regained the use of his legs after a WWI shell blast, but also had a genital transplant enabling him to father an heir to the Downton millions.
It is understood that Corri scriptwriters had considered further several developments to the Hayley Cropper story. An insider revealed that they went as far as filming one version in which the apparently dead Hayley, revives during the funeral, attracting the attention of mourners by sneezing from inside the coffin.
“Whilst this would have been a sensational story, and not without precedent in real life, we reluctantly rejected this option mainly because we had to think of younger children who might be watching. We have to draw the line somewhere and this transgressed the ‘scarier than Gail Platt’ guidelines.”
Actor, Harold Hesmondhalgh, who has played the transsexual character of Hayley for the past 15 years, says it will be a relief to concentrate on new roles. “I’ve signed up to play the lead role in a new play by a writer I’ve not heard of before, but understand is very promising,” he enthused. “It will give me a chance to rubbish the reputation that soap actors know nothing about acting or the theatre.”
- Mr Hesmondhalgh will be appearing in ‘King Lear’ at the Ronsson Theatre in March.