Bill Tarmey's tram crash joke

Bill Tarmey suggested 'Coronation Street' bosses should him kill off in a tram crash disaster as a ''joke'' before realising he had inadvertently contributed to the untimely departure of some of his co-stars

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Coronation Street actor Bill Tarmey

Bill Tarmey

Bill Tarmey suggested 'Coronation Street' bosses should him kill off in a tram crash disaster as a "joke".

The 70-year-old actor - who played Jack Duckworth in the ITV1 soap for 31 years until his departure last year - suggested the dramatic plotline to producer Phil Collinson when he was preparing to leave the show, but later realised he had inadvertently contributed towards a number of his co-stars losing their jobs.

He said: "Phil asked me if there was any particular way I'd like to be written out of the show. I hadn't given it any thought as I wasn't expecting the question. I said jokingly that I could come out of the corner shop and get squished by a derailed tram.

"I told Phil he could get rid of a few others at the same time in the fatal crash. I thought he realised I wasn't serious. It was while I was preparing for Jack's death that I read to my horror about a tram crash that was going to cause death and destruction in Weatherfield.

"I'd realised that I'd sown the seeds of a plot in Phil Collinson's mind. Instead of using a tram crash to kill me off, he had decided to take my idea and use it for the deaths of others."

After being the brains behind the explosive storyline - which saw co-stars Steven Arnold (Ashley Peacock) and Vicky Binns (Molly Dobbs) dramatically killed off - Bill admits it's a burden he will "take to the grave".

In an extract from his autobiography 'Jack Duckworth And Me' published by The Sun newspaper, he added: "It's a burden I'll have to take to the grave. I just hope the victims of the tram crash will forgive me for opening my big gob.

"There must have been cast and colleagues under sentence of death who thought, 'Thanks a lot, Tarmey'. Luckily, I was out of there before the dead men walking discovered my casual suggestion to Phil had been taken to heart."

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