Former Coronation Street actor says soap won’t last after dwindling figures and less quality storylines

Is there trouble ahead on the cobbles? (ITV/Coronation Street)
Is there trouble ahead on the cobbles? (ITV/Coronation Street)

A former Coronation Street actor has stated he believes the popular soap may not have a long future on television screens.

Charlie Lawson, known for playing Jim McDonald in the ITV show, thinks that fans are getting “fed up” of the never-ending storyline, with its longevity put into question.

He also believes the dwindling viewing figures could signal another nail in the coffin for the show.

Speaking to the Daily Star he said: “I was there in the Nineties for 11 years and we were getting between 16 and 20 million – and five million (viewers now) is not a lot.”

He added: “In 10 years, who knows if we will have a Coronation Street? We’re all changing our viewing habits as it is already.”

But it would seem it’s not only Coronation Street that has been suffering over the past few years.

Most recently, the iconic Australian soap Neighbours was pulled off air after 37 years on television screens.

This move was said to be due to dwindling figures, leaving Channel 5 no choice but to stop broadcasting it in the UK – one of the show’s biggest markets. However, Amazon has saved the fan favourite, in a move that is sure to boost ratings.

While EastEnders’ Christmas Day episode, normally a top show on the day, only saw 2.9 million people tuning in last year.

The quality of many of these shows has also been brought into question.

“Do I think it was better in the Eighties and Nineties? I would have to say yes, that’s not the cast’s fault,” Lawson added.

“It’s very hard when you’ve got 70 people and six episodes to do a week. Good acting is about people talking to each other, it’s the spoken word.”

The actor also believes that the show will lose viewers due to “politically correct” storylines, including the ongoing issue of Max Turner being groomed by far-right extremists.

He added: “People are getting a little bit gobsmacked and fed up with all this.”