Monday, 10 November 2008

1974: Why Deirdre Wore Cracked And Tatty Specs

From the Weekly News, January 26 1974:


When Anne Kirkbride came out of the Granada studios to tell her father, who was waiting in his car, that she'd got a part in "Coronation Street", he thought it was marvellous news.

Anne wasn't so sure.

"I was working at Oldham Rep at the time, and I'd done a couple of small parts on television," she said. "When Granada rang and asked me to go for an interview, I was petrified.

"It seemed such a big building. I felt lost.

"So when they did offer me a part in 'The Street' I had mixed feelings.

"It was, of course, a tremendous opportunity, and just at the right moment of my career.

"I'd been at Oldham for about three years and I was on the point of moving somewhere new.

"Oldham was an obvious place to start my acting career. I live with my parents on the moors above the town, in a farmhouse over 200 years old.

"Friends call it 'Wuthering Heights'. It started life as a row of cottages, then became an inn and, finally, a farmhouse.

"My brother, who is sixteen, lives at home and we share the house with a dog that is mostly Spaniel, a couple of cats and some goldfish."

After leaving school, Anne got a job as an assistant stage manager at Oldham.

She also took small parts in plays and gradually the parts got better and better.

Finally, she was taken on to the acting staff.

Anne, who plays Deirdre Hunt in "The Street", is lucky to be one of the characters who is not recognised a lot by the fans when she is outside the studios.

The secret is in her glasses.

The ones she wears off screen are quite different from those Deirdre wears.

"When I first started work I didn't wear any glasses at all playing Deirdre.

"At that time, off the screen, I was wearing big, round ones.

"Then the director said, 'You are going to wear your glasses, aren't you? They would be ideal for the character.'

"I did and I have worn them ever since.

"They've become cracked and are held together by sticky tape now, but they're a good luck token to me, so I keep on patching them up.

"Deirdre wouldn't be quite the same without them."

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