Coronation Street's William Roache marks 90th birthday with photos

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Image source, Will Roache Photography Ltd/PA Media
Image caption,
Roache said his son took the photos as they sat "just chatting and laughing"

Coronation Street's William Roache has marked his 90th birthday with the release of two photos taken by his son.

The actor, who has played Ken Barlow since the ITV soap's first episode in 1960, sat for the portraits at his home in Cheshire.

He said they were "the best photographs I've ever had taken".

His son Will, who studied photography, said the shots showed "the part of him that we are lucky enough to see every day, but is rarely seen publicly".

Roache, who is officially the world's longest-serving TV soap cast member, posed for the photographs as part of a new set taken for the release an updated version of his self-help book, Life and Soul.

Image source, Will Roache Photography Ltd/PA Media
Image caption,
Will Roache said he had tried to capture his father's "vibrant essence"

The soap star, who became an OBE in the 2022 New Year's Honours for services to drama and charity, said he had enjoyed the sitting.

"Will is really talented, he studied photography when he was younger so he has a lot of technical knowledge, but for me, it was about how relaxed we all felt," he said.

"We were all just chatting and laughing and he knew just when to capture the moment.

"I can honestly say those are the best photographs I've ever had taken."

Will said he had tried to capture his father's "vibrant essence" and they had had "a lot of fun taking these shots".

"I think just having the family there made my father feel more relaxed which enabled me to capture his true vivacious personality and vibrant essence, the part of him that we are lucky enough to see every day, but is rarely seen publicly," he added.

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
Roache and a number of other Corrie stars welcomed the Queen to the cobbles in 2021

Some of Roache's fellow Corrie cast members and a host of other actors tweeted their birthday wishes to the star.

Ryan Clayton, who played Josh Tucker, called Roache the "King of the Cobbles", a "national treasure" and an "absolute gent", while former Emmerdale and 'Allo 'Allo star Vicki Michelle said he was "such a lovely man".

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Roache's life has also been celebrated in an ITV documentary, Happy Birthday Bill, which aired in the run-up to the actor's big day.

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