Coronation Street – has Tracy McDonald left for good?

Coronation Street spoilers follow.

Coronation Street icon Tracy McDonald has been away from the cobbles for a number of months now, and fans are wondering if or when she will be back.

Earlier this year, bored in her marriage to Steve, she decided to embark on a dangerous affair with former Weatherfield County player – and Steve’s football hero – Tommy Orpington.

It wasn’t long before the affair was exposed and Steve found out about her betrayal, but Tracy used this opportunity to tell him that their marriage was stale and she wanted to separate.

She was later upset to find out that Tommy was moving to Spain to start a new coaching job, and she hastily announced to Steve that she wanted to get back together.

tommy orpington, tracy mcdonald, coronation street

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But their reunion was short lived, as Tracy discovered that Steve had hidden a letter from Tommy that asked move to Spain with him – and soon she was leaving Manchester for a life in the sun.

Tracy hasn’t been seen on screen since April and, quite frankly, the Street is missing her cutting one-liners.

This week, there was some hope that her return would be sooner rather than later, with Amy telling Steve she would be returning to Weatherfield for an event – the unveiling of Tommy O’s bust, no less.

In tonight’s episode (June 28), Steve was looking forward to seeing Tracy again, and had secret hopes of winning her back on his 50th birthday. He bought a new shirt to impress her and was even analysing horoscopes to predict what their reunion would look like.

tracy barlow, tommy orpington, steve mcdonald, coronation street

However, Amy later dashed these dreams when she told her dad that Tracy wouldn’t be coming home next week – explaining to Steve that the weather is hotting up in Spain, so she had decided to stay out there.

What’s more, Amy also revealed that Tracy wants her to work in the florist with Mary, hinting that her move to Spain might indeed be a permanent one. So has Tracy Barlow left the Street for good?

The short answer is no. Although on-screen, it seems that Tracy has started a new life in Spain, there was never an indication from the show that actor Kate Ford had left Corrie. Plus, you would expect there to be more fanfare about the exit of such an iconic, long-standing cast member.

This week, The Sun reported that Ford had returned to filming on Corrie, but only for a short stint this summer, to "visit her family and deal with some Barlow family drama."

ken barlow, amy barlow and tracy mcdonald in coronation street

Their sources explained that she would then make a permanent return to the show later this year, though Coronation Street declined to comment on this report.

In which case, the real question to ask is, considering she seems to be enjoying her new Spanish life, why will Tracy make a return to Weatherfield?

Will something happen that forces her to come home, or will she decide that her new life just isn’t working out? Will she bring back current beau Tommy with her, or will that relationship have ended on her return?

And if she does come back single, will she and Steve reconcile? Distance makes the heart grow fonder, and all that.

We will have to wait a bit longer to find out the answer to all these questions and more. But fear not – Tracy will be back, and better than ever.

Coronation Street airs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.

Read more Coronation Street spoilers on our dedicated homepage

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