Sarah Lancashire reveals very specific reason she will never return to Corrie
7th September 2023

Acclaimed and award-winning Happy Valley actress Sarah Lancashire has always been clear that she will not return to Coronation Street.

Closing the door on her role as ditzy Raquel Watts, a character she played for four years, Sarah reckons time has moved on, and there wouldn’t be much for the barmaid to do.

But there is another, much more specific reason, that the Last Tango In Halifax and Kiri star won’t be back – the fashion.

Raquel was known for being glamorous, wearing some outlandish outfits that caught the eye of nerdy supermarket manager Curly.

The very 90s style wouldn’t fit in modern Corrie, Sarah has reasoned.

Talking at the National Televison Awards, where she picked up three prizes including an honour of Lifetime Achievement, she explained: ‘It’s very clear why I would never go back because the show evolves, decade by decade.

‘When people say “I was in Coronation Street”, you think, “Well, which one?” Was it the 60s, the 70s, the 80s? They all have a defining quality.

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‘I know when I was there in the 90s it was very specific to that time and that place, with a voice for writers who were just absolutely brilliant. Heavens, my character would be so old now – too old for short skirts!’

She added to The Sun: ‘So no, but you can walk away from it and leave it there, because you never really leave the characters.

‘They take up residence within you… so you don’t fully move on from them. I always believe characters choose you, it’s really not the other way round.’

That is certainly true of Raquel; it seems conceivable that any other actress could nail the role as Sarah.

Due to that, Raquel won over viewers, and three decades later, she continues to be considered a legend.

Her most prominent story was her on/off romance and eventual marriage to lovelorn Curly, someone that Raquel never truly loved.

In a special two-hander episode, her final episode saw her tell Curly that they don’t have a future.

She was also known for being slow on the uptake, and had particularly memorable comedy scenes which saw her struggle with French lessons from Ken Barlow.

Meanwhile, Sarah has flexed her ‘never return’ vibe elsewhere, confirming that Happy Valley is also a closed book, with the team not wanting to dilute its impact and knowing that it has a very definite ending.

She’s right of course, but that doesn’t take away the slight tinge of disappointment.

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