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Aussie couple are Coronation Street's real life love match

Keith Monks
Keith Monks proposes to Charlie Acton. Credit: Manchester Evening News

The boyfriend of an Australian Coronation Street fan plotted a surprise marriage proposal on the cobbles from 9,000 miles away.

Charlie Acton had no idea what Keith Monks had in store when she began the tour of the former Corrie set in Manchester.

She stepped onto the street and saw childhood sweat-heart Keith, 31, on bended knee holding a ring with a huge banner behind which read: “Charlie, will you marry me?”

She answered immediately ‘yes’.

The pair, from Perth, had travelled to the UK to visit friends and Keith secretly enlisted the help of the Coronation Street Tour which began earlier this year when filming was moved from the old Quay Street set to Trafford Quays.

Keith Monks
Charlie said Credit: Manchester Evening News

“Charlie is a huge fan of Coronation Street and so I thought it would be a great idea to propose on the tour.

"I was so happy that it was a surprise for her, it will be a fantastic story to tell our grandkids in the future.”

– Keith Monks
Keith Monks
A crowd of supporters cheered the couple. Credit: Manchester Evening News

“I had absolutely no idea.

"I am a die-hard Coronation Street fan and this was just brilliant. "Even though we live in Australia I never miss an episode. "I am so happy.”

– Charlie Acton
Keith Monks.
A crowd of supporters cheered as Keith and Charlie got engaged. Credit: Manchester Evening News

Charlie’s tour guide, Andy Steele, made sure that she was the one to open the door to Nick’s Bistro for the grand reveal onto the Street.

Waiting outside the doors were close friends Ellie-May Flannery and her partner Jay Pennington who were holding the banner and Keith who waited with baited breath on one knee.

A crowd of supporters also formed to cheer the couple and congratulate them on their engagement.

Keith Monks.
Keith planned the proposal with help from pals and tour staff. Credit: Manchester Evening News

Pat Richards leaves Wigan for Australia

Pat Richards
Pat Richards is to leave Wigan for Australia Credit: Press Association

Wigan's prolific goalkicking winger Pat Richards is to leave the Super League leaders at the end of the season to return home to Australia, the club have announced.

The 31-year-old Ireland international, who was Super League Man of Steel in 2010, is to re-join Wests Tigers on a two-year contract.

"This has been a difficult decision to make as I have thoroughly enjoyed my eight seasons with Wigan but the time has come for my family and I to return home," Richards said.

Richards, whose contract with Wigan expires at the end of the season, was described by chairman Ian Lenagan as one of the best overseas signings in the club's history.

He has made over 200 appearances for the Warriors since joining them from the Tigers in 2006 and is approaching 2,300 points for the club.

Richards moved up to third place in the club's top points-scorers of all time in 2012 and added to the successes of a Grand Final win in 2010 and Challenge Cup in 2011.

Lenagan said: "We are obviously disappointed to be losing Pat but fully respect his decision and his reasons to head home.

"Pat joined us in 2006 and he has been a wonderful player for the Wigan club and he has provided us all with some terrific moments.

"He is a model professional, is highly respected by everyone and is one of the best overseas signings the club has ever made.

"We know he will do all he can for the remainder of the season to play his part in trying to bring more success to the club, he will be missed and we wish him well."

Wigan coach Shaun Wane said: "Pat is not only a sensational player but also a great person and we will miss his influence both on and off the field."

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