Great Britain

Coronation Street’s Rovers Return will tackle the coronavirus pandemic by turning itself into a takeaway

BRITAIN'S most famous boozer The Rovers Return will tackle the pandemic – by turning itself into a takeaway.

Residents will be filmed tucking into portions of Betty’s hot-pot and downing pints of Newton and Ridley’s ale in their front rooms on Coronation Street.

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Actors will return to work on the cobbles next week and the coronavirus will be reflected in new episodes to be filmed in the coming weeks.

Residents will be seen in face masks, the Underworld knicker factory will begin making gowns for NHS staff and there will be social distancing queues outside Weatherfield’s own Co-op branch and Dev’s corner shop.

And ITV source revealed: “The new storylines will tackle the pandemic and the way it is affecting ordinary people – with pubs and restaurants doing takeaways and shoppers having to queue to get their groceries but coronavirus will not dominate the drama.

“But they’ll be Betty’s hotpot on the Rovers’ new takeaway menu and beer to go which will be a first and the staff in the factory will turn their hands to making PPE.”

And John Whiston, Managing Director of Continuing Drama for ITV, told an episode of Good Morning Britain: "The Rovers will be a takeaway place, so will the cafe.

"You will see the odd person wearing a mask out... Underworld may be making PPE equipment.

"If things loosen up then it is easier to build it into the script than to add in social distancing at a later date.

"We will still be changing things up a lot.”

He also revealed the complex problems social distancing had thrown up for the cast and crew of Corrie and Yorkshire-bases stablemate Emmerdale.

He said: “We have put Perspex shields on the cameras, like a motorcycling cowling, but we have had to make a lot of this up ourselves.

“The guidelines have now come out but when we were starting no one had done drama in a socially distanced way.

“Then somebody is handling a letter, the other cast member can’t handle the same letter, so they have to put it down on the table.

"We then stop filming, take that letter away and put another in its place for the other cast member to pick up.”

Emmerdale stars have already returned to work – with cameras placed on the roofs of buildings on their outdoor set new Leeds.

He added: “It doesn’t look as if everyone is two metres away from each other and I think I’ll get complaints that the characters are too close when actually it is where you put the cameras and how you stage it! The episodes look great.”

Coronation Street newcomer Scott makes a good impression on Liz McDonald at the Rover's Return

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