ITV to resume Coronation Street filming
Coronation Street first aired in 1960
UK commercial broadcaster ITV is set to resume filming on long-running soap opera Coronation Street, following a 10-week break amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Coronation Street’s cast and crew returned to work today to complete a health and safety induction aimed at familiarising them with new protocols in place throughout the studios and on set.
The crew is also undertaking preparatory work necessary to recommence filming next Tuesday, June 9, at the soap’s studios in Manchester.
The pattern of recording will initially produce three episodes per week, in line with the programme’s schedule after it was cut from five episodes a week in March when filming was suspended.
ITV said the return to filming would ensure Coronation Street, which celebrates its 60th anniversary in December, stays on air in July.
New safety measures, implemented to make filming possible, include a fixed cohort system, with crew members designated to a specific studio or the Coronation Street exterior lot. The filming units will maintain safe social distancing, using cohort managers to ensure this takes place. Cast and crew will have their temperatures checked on a daily basis by specialist medical advisers.
In addition, intensive cleaning and sanitisation of areas where filming takes place will occur every day; crew members will use their own assigned equipment; props will be sanitised, with the design team working at a safe distance; make-up and costume staff will work remotely with members of the cast; and office staff will continue to work from home to ensure fewer people in the building.
Members of the cast and crew who are over the age of 70 or have underlying health conditions won’t be on set in the initial period of filming. For those who fall into the ‘clinically vulnerable’ category, ITV will follow an individual risk-assessment process that will enable them to return to work if it is safe for them to do so.
ITV MD of continuing drama John Whiston said: “Getting to this point has taken a huge amount of work and goodwill from a huge number of people, not least our cast and crew. With the peak passed, all indications are that the time is right for a return to filming. And with the extensive protocols we have put in place, we have made our workplace as safe as possible.
“I’m sure our audience will appreciate having the show they love continue on air. For many who have written in it is a vital escape from all the fears and stresses this virus brings in its wake.”
Series producer Iain MacLeod added: “The whole team at Coronation Street has pulled together to generate an ingenious, intricate set of protocols, to allow filming to restart as safely as humanly possible. We are really pleased to able to resume making the nation’s favourite soap at a time when people need the reassurance of their regular Corrie fix more than ever.
“Safety remains our number-one priority and we are under no illusions about the challenges still facing us and the nation as a whole. However, I can assure viewers that Corrie’s ever-present humour and brilliant storytelling will be there in abundance in the episodes due to begin filming next week and beyond.”