Entertainment & Arts

Coronation Street : Derek Griffiths to leave the soap

Derek Griffiths Image copyright ITV

Fans of Corrie will have to wave goodbye to mechanic Freddie Smith soon as Derek Griffiths is leaving the soap.

The actor and children's TV legend joined Weatherfield last year, but is set to move on to star in a stage production of Driving Miss Daisy.

The BBC understands he filmed his final scenes last week and will appear on TV screens until April.

But it's thought the character could possibly return to the cobbles at a later date.

Image copyright ITV
Image caption Freddie and Kylie became unlikely friends

Freddie first appeared on the soap last March, when he turned up at Kylie's beauty salon.

He later got a job at Kevin's garage and had a brief romance with Audrey.

It is understood Griffiths left of his own accord at the end of a one-year contract.

He was best-known to a generation of TV viewers for hosting classic children's programme Play School and Play Away during the 1960s, '70s and '80s.

But as an actor he also spent two years with the Royal Shakespeare Company and appeared in West End productions of Miss Saigon and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Image caption Derek Griffiths hosted Play School alongside Johnny Ball and Sarah Long

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