Chris Gascoyne decided to quit Corrie role on Buddhist retreat

Chris Gascoyne decided to quit playing womaniser Peter Barlow in 'Coronation Street' while on a Buddhist retreat in Scotland last year

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Chris Gascoyne

Chris Gascoyne

Chris Gascoyne decided to quit 'Coronation Street' while on a Buddhist retreat.

The 45-year-old actor made the decision to leave the cobbles last year after he embarked on the mini break in order to deal with the stresses of playing womaniser Peter Barlow in the ITV soap.

He said: "I took a four-month sabbatical from the show last summer and spent some time at a Buddhist retreat - and that was a big changing point in my life.

"Peter can be a very negative character - and although the storylines were fantastic, I lost myself.

"Having that break made me realise I can do the same job and still be happy."

The soap star - who has played the recovering alcoholic since 2000 - will bow out of the show in an explosive storyline next summer, which will be built around his affair with beautiful barmaid Tina McIntyre (Michelle Keegan), but he admits he doesn't know if his departure will be his last ever scene in Weatherfield.

Speaking to Woman magazine, he explained: "I've signed a new contract that takes me to August 2014 - and at this moment I don't know what will happen beyond then.

"Maybe I will take a break. The character loses something by being here all the time and being ordinary.

"I'd like to do other stuff. It's like anything - we can get stuck in one place, and that's not necessarily a bad place, but it's not always good for us, is it?"

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