Bill Roache nearly turned down his role on 'Coronation Street'.

Bill Roache nearly turned down his role in Coronation Street

Bill Roache nearly turned down his role in Coronation Street

The 91-year-old actor has appeared in the ITV1 soap opera as Ken Barlow since its very first episode aired in December 1960 and holds the Guinness World Record for the longest-serving actor on television but admitted that he was initially hesitant about taking on the job when it was thought that the programme was only going to have a short run because he was also starring in a play at the same time.

Speaking on ITV's 'Lorraine', he told showbiz reporter Ria Hebden: "It was only going to run for about 11 weeks and I didn't really want to do it because I got the lead in a play at the time and I was waiting for that to go out. My agent said 'It's a sort of comedy in the North West' and I said 'Oh I don't want to do it!' But he persuaded me to do it, thank goodness. And here I am!"

Meanwhile, the legendary soap star - who received an OBE in the 2022 New Year Honours for services to drama and charity - is gearing up to jump out of an aeroplane for charity and insisted that his age will not hold him back because he has a "use it or lose it" attitude towards health in general.

He added: "I'm doing a skydive on Sunday morning, it's for a community cause and to help the homeless. If anyone wants to sponsor me, go to GoFundMe and look for Bill Roache.I don't believe you should acknowledge your age. You should do what you enjoy doing. As you get older, people bring you chairs and tell you to take it easy. No, if you don't use it, you lose it!"