Coronation Street Links



Back in 1960, the opening scene of the very first episode of Coronation Street featured the old battle-axe, Ena Sharples, meeting new shopkeeper, Florrie Lindley. Well, Florrie was played by the actress Betty Alberge.

Born in 1922 and educated in Fallowfield, Manchester, Betty trained at the Manchester Repertory School and commenced her professional career at Colwyn Bay as a member of the Ravenscroft Repertory Theatre.

During the war she left the Rep to work for ENSA, did much radio work, including the Clitheroe Kid, until in 1960 Tony Warren, the creator of Coronation Street and an admirer of her work, persuaded her to join the 'soap'.

After she was axed from the show in 1964 she continued with TV work, appearing for many years as Mrs Mumford in Rentaghost. She died aged 69 yrs in 1991.

There are several examples of cast members of the Rep appearing on TV.

This article was written by Roy Schofield and if you have any further information, then please email this website.


For this well-known theatrical face we return to the first ever episode of Coronation Street. We enter the ‘Rovers Return’ and see behind the bar, the landlord, Jack Walker, long suffering husband of the sharp-tongued snob, Annie. The part of the gentle mannered Jack was played from 1960 until his untimely death of a heart attack in 1970 by Arthur Leslie.

The actor was born in Newark in 1901. After naval service he entered the acting profession and by the time he appeared at Colwyn Bay Rep in 1951 he had enjoyed many years appearing in comedy farces on the London stage, followed by 16 years of appearing in repertory theatres throughout Britain.

In a programme note written in 1951 it was said, “What Arthur Leslie doesn’t know about the theatre is not worth knowing”.

After a couple of years in Colwyn Bay the actor (real name, Arthur Broughton) resumed his travels, plying his art on stage until Coronation Street beckoned. By the time of his death he had built up a reputation of a fine TV actor. And, the ‘soap’ had lost one of its most popular members of the regular cast. His screen wife was played by Doris Speed. She remained behind the bar at the ‘Rovers’ for several more years.

This article was written by Roy Schofield and if you have any further information, then please email this website.

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