WE always knew there was a devil buried somewhere deep within Mavis Wilton, didn’t we?
Once Rita’s faithful companion in The Kabin – think Norris in a skirt – Mavis spent 26 years on Coronation Street.
It’s now almost 10 years since she did the papers for the last time and left Weatherfield to run a B&B in the Lake District.
But actress Thelma Barlow, who played Mavis, still had a tear in her eye as she watched an archive clip of her farewell scene on today’s edition of This Morning.
“It was brilliant,” she said of her time on the cobbles. “It just gave me a wonderful life.”
Middlesbrough-born Thelma, 77, has gone on to star in many more roles, including parts in Dinnerladies and Mrs Henderson Presents.
And she makes her much heralded appearance in Doctor Who this Saturday as baddie Lady Thaw.
Thelma admitted it was a role she couldn’t turn down – for fear of having to explain her decision to her grandchildren.
But she added: “It was terrifying for me, doing it.”
The episode – on BBC1 at 7pm – is called The Lazarus Experiment and also guest stars Mark Gatiss.
Now living on the south coast, Thelma worked as a secretary before getting into acting.
She had some wise advice for anyone looking for job satisfaction.
“If you find a thing you really want to do and you get an opportunity to do it, that’s what really fulfils you.
“It might be motherhood, it might be dentistry, it might be anything.”
As for hotelier Mavis, it’s unlikely she’ll ever be returning to the Rovers.
“It’s coming up to the busy season,” Thelma pointed out.
*Doctor Who has finally been defeated by one of Earth’s strangest forms of life – the Eurovision Song Contest.
Episode seven – “42” – has been postponed by a week because of overcrowding in the time and space otherwise known as BBC1’s schedules.
A combination of Eurovision at 8pm on Saturday May 12, the National Lottery and Any Dream Will Do’s weekly invasion of the scary white teeth means there’s no room for the Time Lord that night.
But if you take a look at last year’s winners – “Hard Rock Hallelejah” Finnish rock band Lordi – some viewers might want the Doctor back sooner, rather than later.
Official Coronation Street site
Doctor Who Online
Official BBC Doctor Who site
Official Eurovision Song Contest site