Two weeks ago I went to see the most famous street in Manchester, Coronation Street. The soap has been running since 1960 and is one of the most popular programmes in Britain. As a proud Mancunian I’ve been brought up following the lives of the residents. In December 2013, the show moved from it’s location at Granada Studios to it’s new home in Media City. The entire set has been re-built identically at it’s new location, although it is 9 10ths bigger to make filming easier. Because of the move, ITV decided to open up the old set to the public for a limited time. Of course I jumped at the chance, and have actually been round it twice now.
The first part of the tour is lead by a local tour guide through the set’s inside the actual studio. You get to look at wardrobe, make-up, some of the dressing rooms, and lots of props! Belive it or not all the houses on the street are just shells, with no interiors. The interiors are just in the studio itself. Unfortunately during this first hour your not allowed to take any photos. However, you do have an opportunity to have your photo taken pulling a pint at the Rover’s Return and purchase it at the end, for around £7 for one copy, £10 for two!
After being shown round the studio, you are then allowed to walk on those famous cobbles and look round the street at your leisure, taking as many photos as you want. This was possibly one of the most surreal experiences of my life. Everything felt familiar as if I’d been there before, which of course I had, from the comfort of my sofa. From walking down the back alleys, sitting in the smoking shelter of the Rovers,Street Cars or grabbing a Full English at Roy’s Rolls, it was like visiting a second home and something I would recommend to die hard fans and occasional watchers alike!