Sue Johnston returns to Coronation Street after 30 years

Sue Johnston
Sue Johnston will play character Gloria Price who'll help run the Rovers Return Photo: PA

Sue Johnston is slap-happy to be back in Coronation Street after 30 years.

Viewers will see the Royle Family star arrive on the street next Wednesday when her character, Gloria Price, jets into Weatherfield from Spain for a reunion with daughter Stella (Michelle Collins) and granddaughter Eva (Catherine Tyldesley).

And she wastes no time making clear what she thinks of Stella's boyfriend Karl Munro (John Michie) having an affair with Sunita Alahan (Shobna Gulati) when she gives him a piece of her mind - and the back of her hand.

Show supremo Phil Collinson said he was "delighted" Johnston had joined the cast.

He said: "She is a national treasure and a stunning actress. She has been at the heart of the very best comedy and drama the UK has produced over last 30 years and will step into the heart of Coronation Street as her character, Gloria, takes up running The Rovers with daughter Stella."

Her arrival marks a return to the long-running soap 30 years after she played the minor role of bookmaker's wife Mrs Chadwick - who is very different from the characters she played in Brookside and The Royle Family.

She said: "She's very straight-talking and just doesn't care what she says and to whom she says it.

"She's the sort of person who takes pride in shooting from the hip. It never wins her any friends but she's clearly not bothered about that.

"She wastes no time in ruffling feathers when she arrives in Weatherfield, which she thinks is a dump. As well as being blunt to the point of rudeness, she's also a terrible flirt which is terrific fun and a great combination to play."

Johnston said coming back to the street was easier the second time around, but admitted she was still "nervous".

She said: "I've just filmed some scenes with Barbara Knox, because Rita is one of the first people Gloria goes into combat with, and she was wonderful.

"Because the characters are so familiar and I've always watched the show as a fan, I have to make sure I call people by their real names. So far my only mistake has been calling Craig Charles 'Lloyd' and he laughed when I apologised."