Gail Platt to overtake Ken Barlow in Corrie record

Gail Platt is set to take over Coronation Street legend Ken Barlow in a new series record.

The character, who has been at the centre of some of the soap’s most high-profile storylines and controversies, is played by 73-year-old actor Helen Worth.

Meanwhile, Ken is played by veteran soap star Bill Roache, the show’s longest-running cast member, who has appeared on the programme since its very first episode aired on 9 December 1960.

Worth is set to overtake Roache’s record for the highest number of appearances on Corrie as she signs a new deal, which could see her far surpass his figures, according to The Sun.

Roache, 92, has made a total of 4,773 appearances as Ken, which is 320 episodes ahead of Worth, who has appeared as Gail a total of 4,453 times since she first appeared on the show in July 1974.

Worth is set to increase her appearances as her rolling yearly contract – reportedly worth £250,000 - is renewed.

Gail holds other records including being the series’ most married-female, having wed six times, one behind Steve McDonald (played by Simon Gregson). She made her mark in one of the most controversial stories of the day when her 13-year-old daughter Sarah (played by Tina O’Brien) became pregnant in 1999.

Other narrative arcs include her proximity to a number of murders, including marrying serial killer Richard Hillman (played by Brian Capron), being imprisoned for the murder of her husband at the time Joe McIntyre (Reece Dinsdale), and locking her son David Platt in the cellar of a Bistro after she discovers he is going to kill his late wife Kylie’s murderer.

Worth and Roache are two of the soap’s longest-running cast members (Getty Images)
Worth and Roache are two of the soap’s longest-running cast members (Getty Images)

“I don’t ask questions, I just get on with the job,” Worth said of her appearances on the show.

The Ossett-born actor was made an MBE for services to drama last year.

She spoke of her pride at the achievement as she received the honour from Prince William at Windsor Castle.

The actor told the PA news agency: “He (William) was so lovely, so easy. He asked all the right questions. He was very complimentary.”

Gail has made 4,453 appearances on the show (ITV)
Gail has made 4,453 appearances on the show (ITV)

She added: “It just feels absolutely wonderful. To collect an MBE is very special.

“But to receive it in this beautiful building and to be able to walk through it and look at all these pictures and tapestries, I love castles and houses in history, and so for me to come here today is just absolutely wonderful.”

Earlier this year, Coronation Street bosses were forced to release a statement responding to the news that Roache had “filed for bankruptcy”.

A spokesperson for the series told The Independent: “We’re really sorry to hear of Bill’s financial situation. Bill has an ongoing contract with Coronation Street and remains a much-loved member of the cast.”