Former Corrie actor in court on child sex charges

A former Coronation Street actor from Liverpool has appeared in court charged with historic child sex offences. Andrew Lancel, 42, was charged last November under his real name, Andrew Watkinson.

Watkinson, who faces five counts of indecent assault on a child under 16, appeared at Liverpool Crown Court for a preliminary hearing.

The actor, wearing thick, dark-rimmed spectacles, a grey suit and striped tie, spoke only to confirm his name as Andrew Charles Watkinson.

The offences are alleged to have happened during his trainee acting days in Southport, Merseyside. The actor, from Gateacre in Liverpool, will next appear in court to enter his pleas to the charges on April 15.

The Recorder of Liverpool, Judge Clement Goldstone QC, set a provisional trial date for June 3. Watkinson, who was granted bail, is best known for his role as Frank Foster in the ITV soap. Merseyside Police said Watkinson has been charged under the Sexual Offences Act 2003.