Anne Kirkbride remembered by Coronation Street co-stars during moving memorial service

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The stars of Coronation Street past and present were out in force on Saturday to honour the late Anne Kirkbride. Bill Roache, Michelle Collins and Kym Marsh were among those who stepped out at Manchester Cathedral to remember Anne, who died on 19 January at the age of 60 following a battle with breast cancer.

Anne's husband of 23 years Dave Beckett organised the emotional service, including the choice of music and readings, along with the Coronation Street production team.

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The order of service from Anne's memorial service



Fans of the much-loved soap star also lined the streets outside the cathedral, while other cast members of the ITV show in attendance included: Elle Mulvaney, Jenny McAlpine, Michael Le Vell, Les Dennis, Sue Johnston, Sue Nicholls, Sally Dynevor, Beverley Callard, Craig Tinker and Brooke Vincent.

Speaking outside Manchester Cathedral on Friday, the day before the service, Bill spoke fondly on his long-time on-screen wife.

Jennie McAlpine and Kym Marsh



"It's very, very strange because we're actually filming the funeral of Deirdre and I had a scene as Ken where I'm given Deirdre's glasses but of course Annie wore them for 30 years so you certainly don't need any motivation for the acting," he said.

"We're always on the verge [of tears]," he added. "It is a family and doing the funeral that we're doing of Deirdre next week, Annie will be there, we're just feeling her there the whole time.

"I know I have never heard a single bad word or criticism about Annie, you couldn't. I used to call her a love bomb because she exploded with love so she was a love bomb. She liked that."

Helen Worth and Bill Roache



Anne, who played Deirdre Barlow in Corrie for over 40 years, will be remembered in the show itself this summer.

The on-screen funeral will offer cast members the opportunity to say their goodbyes to Anne, as many weren't aware that she was ill during her sabbatical from the soap.

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