Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Coronation Street - Joined Up Bay Windows In 1960...

Recently we featured this lovely drawing by the Street's original designer, Denis Parkin, which featured on the Street cast's Christmas card in 1961. The pic shows the Street, complete with Corner Shop, the Glad Tidings Mission Hall and Elliston's Raincoat Factory. In the original blog post I wrote:

Note that the bay windows in this early sketch are not joined together in pairs, and echo the architecture of Archie Street, which provided the rough template for the Street's terrace. The reason that the windows were joined in the show was because of lack of space on the original exterior set, which was built in the studio.

Sky Clearbrook, an old and valued friend of this blog, has written:

Andy, this is a superb find. Nice to get a glimpse of both sides of the street - especially the walls of the factory.

Full bay windows were a feature of the early version of the indoor set (eg as seen at Ida Barlow's funeral cortege). I think this version of the set was condensed to form joined windows some time in 1962.

Great to hear from you, Sky - I've missed ya! Actually, photographs of the original Street set before the first scene was shot in 1960 show that the windows were joined from the very first. There's one of these in HV Kershaw's book, "The Street Where I Live", taken whilst the little girls in the very first scene outside the Corner Shop were receiving last minute instructions (see below). I think that Ida's funeral scene was a piece of location filming - perhaps in Archie Street. All the best for Christmas and 2011, matey, keep in touch!

Caption from HV Kershaw's book, "The Street Where I Live" (1981): A historic photograph: three little girls receive their last instructions from the floor manager before Coronation Street's very first shot.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Andy,

    Yes, I've seen that picture too, so you certainly have a point. But I'm 100% certain there were other indoor-set scenes from those early days featuring full bay windows. I'll need to dig out some of those old episodes on DVD to find some screen grabs.

    Either way, it's fair to say they used to play fast and loose with the sets in those days, probably thinking that nobody would really notice. In one episode, I noticed that Albert Tatlock's bay windows had disappeared altogether - again I must look that one out.