Frank Barlow was a character in Coronation Street from the first episode in 1960 to 1965 and again in 1971, last appearing in Ep 1049 - 3 Feb 1971. He was the father of Ken Barlow and David Barlow and husband of Ida Barlow. Frank was played by Frank Pemberton.



Francis Barlow as born in 1913 to Sidney Barlow and Edna Barlow. He had an older sister Marjorie Barlow. Frank grew up in Weatherfield. Frank joined the Navy then worked as a postmaster. In May 1938, Frank married Ida Leathers. In October 1939, they had a son Kenneth Barlow. Another son David Barlow was born in July 1942.


Frank Barlow was 47 in 1960. In September 1961 Ida was killed and Frank and Ken warred over it after her death.

In 1964, Frank won some money on the pools and decided to leave the dingy Coronation Street for Cheshire. He seemed to have a personality change after winning his money. He left in late May 1964.

Frank did not return to see his grandchildren Peter Barlow and Susan Barlow who were born in April 1965 but did return in 1967. In February 1971 Frank made one last visit to Weatherfield for the funeral of his daughter in law Valerie Barlow. Valerie had died after being electrocuted.

After 1971Edit

Frank returned to Cheshire after Val's funeral and died inbetween then and April 1975.

Frank was said to be dead by 21st April 1975 but the exact date of death was never said.


  • Frank Barlow was axed from the programme along with several other cast members (controversy one of them being Martha Longhurst who was killed off) by Tim Aspinall. Frank Pemberton suffered health issues after leaving the show and found work hard to come by. In 1967 he made a one-off return, which was to see if he was up for a comeback but it was clear he was still not in the best of health and the idea of a full-time comeback never went any further. He made another one-off return in 1971 as part of the funeral of his on-screen daughter Valerie Barlow, but this would be his last contribution as Pemberton died six-weeks later.
  • Some sources carry Frank's date of death as occurring on the 21st April 1975. However in that actual episode, Ep 1487 - 21 Apr 1975, Peter Barlow asks his dad Ken if his grandfather (Frank) is still alive, in which Ken says no, therefore Frank's death preceeded that event. In reality actor Frank Pemberton passed away on the 26th March 1971.
  • The only way we would know for sure Frank's death is if Ken ever visited his grave (which is highly unlikely), of if Ken mentioned an anniversary of his father's death, or if a writer/producer decided to create an accurate date of death for the character.
  • Frank Barlow definitely died sometime inbetween February 1971 and April 1975. However it is most likely that Ken would have been told of his father's death offscreen.
  • Peter Barlow (played by Chris Gascoyne since 2000) bores a resemblance to his grandfather Frank.

Memorable infoEdit

Appearances: 9 December 1960–27 May 1964, 15 March 1967, 3 February 1971

Born: 19th October 1913

Died: Prior to April 1975 (About 1974)

Full Name: Francis Barlow

Parents: Sidney Barlow and Edna Barlow

Siblings: Marjorie Barlow

Spouse: Ida Leathers (1938-1961)

Children: Ken Barlow (1939), David Barlow (1942)