She might be an unlikely femme fatale but there is no denying that "sexy specs" Deirdre
Barlow is a red hot mama.
She first burst onto the street as an eighteen-year-old dolly bird way back in 1972.
First husband Ray Langton cheated on her, but she found a safe harbour with Ken Barlow.
More than 24 million viewers watched their first wedding back in 1981 - that's more than
saw Diana marry Prince Charles!
Deirdre has always craved romance and excitement, and bored with Ken, she embarked
on an affair with Mike Baldwin. This love triangle caught the imagination of the public and
her decision to stay with Ken was announced on the Manchester United scoreboard
during a game with Arsenal: "Ken 1 Mike 0".
But Ken and Deirdre couldn't make it work and divorced after he had an affair with his
secretary Wendy Crozier.
When Deirdre then went on holiday to Morocco in 1994, she brought back an unusual souvenir in the shape of toyboy Samir Rachid.
I think they really loved each other and Deirdre was distraught when he was mugged and killed, but not before giving his kidney to her demon daughter Tracy, who has broken her mother's heart time and time again.
Deirdre's desire for romance led her into disaster. Remember when she fell for the dubious
charms of phoney pilot Jon Lindsay and ended up in jail after he framed her for fraud.
The campaign to "Free the Wetherfield One" was a phenomenon and even had the
backing of prime minister Tony Blair.
Deirdre eventually got back with Ken but their marriage is rocky. Although he drives Deirdre crazy, it seems they cannot live without each other. But Deirdre craves attention and affection and Ken finds it hard to show her how much he loves her.
Deirdre has suffered so many blows recently, seeing her daughter jailed for murder,
making a fool of herself with escort Lewis and then losing her mum Blanche, but she lifts
up her chin, lights another fag, pours herself a large glass of red and lives to fight another
Deirdre was responsible for one of my proudest moments when she went shopping for
new glasses and asked for specs "like Lorraine Kelly's". I nearly fell off my sofa and my
phone rang off the hook with hugely impressed friends and family.
It doesn't get any better than a name check in Corrie.