Leonard Franklin Fairclough was born on the 7th November 1924 in Liverpool. He was the only child of Ned Fairclough and Grace Fairclough (Nee Franklin). Len's middle name was his mother's maiden name. Len was a tearaway as he grew up. His parents died when their house was bombed during World War Two. Aged 17, Len joined the Navy. After he left the Navy, Len moved to Weatherfield in Salford and married Nellie Bailey on the 12th July 1949. Len had a son Stanley Fairclough in 1950. Len was a builder and had a quick temper and was handy with his fists.
1961-1983EditLen arrived in Coronation Street in January 1961. He was a local builder and he drunk at The Rovers Return. In January 1962, Len was angry at Ken Barlow for slamming his working class roots in a local newspaper. Ken had gone to university and seemed to think he was better than his roots. They had a row and this lead to an altercation, Len hit Ken, Ken then hit Len and threw him to the floor. In the end Len threw the last punch and left the pub. Len took on Jerry Booth as a labourer. In 1965 they became partners. Len's on off fling with Elsie Tanner continued for years.
In 1972 Len became friendly with Rita Bates. He even clashed with her common law husband Harry Bates and was even beaten by Harry in a fight. Len became good friends with Alf Roberts. In 1974 Stan wanted to borrow some money from a local fund for Hilda to take a holiday away but Len suggested Blackpool, and the money was to be put to better use. Len married Rita in 1977. In 1978, Len almost thumped Joe Dawson for grassing him up over something. In 1980, Rita left Len but she then returned to him.
In December 1983 Len died in a car accident when going to see his mistress Marjorie Proctor, much to the distress of Rita. The truth emerged when Len was supposed to be on a job in Ashton but his car was found long from where he was supposed to be. Rita then found a Bolton phone number on a beer mat. Rita found that Len was somwehere that he did not want her to know about. She rung the number and got through to Marjorie. She then met Marjorie but it did not tarnish her memory of Len.
Despite him having an affair, Rita continued to love her husband.
In the late 1980s, Rita's boyfriend Alan Bradley impersonated the late Len in order to remortgage the house to set up a business. When Rita found out his deceit, he attempted to murder her, however was unsuccessful.
Photos of Len appear at Rita's flat No.10a Coronation Street, and she has mentioned him several times.
In 2017 Rita (suffering at the time from a brain tumour) believed that Len was still alive and waited for him to come home, causing concern for her flat mate Gemma Winter, who couldn't bring herself to tell Rita that Len has been long dead.
- Peter Adamson played the character of Len for over 20 years. In February 1983, he was suspended from the show for selling stories about his fellow cast members. He was given a warning and returned to filming. In April 1983 he was arrested for alleged sex abuse claims. He was cleared of the charges but he sold his memoirs and was sacked due to breach of contract. This meant his character had to be written out of the show so Len was killed off, and he got killed off in December that year (off-screen). To add insult to injury, the writers attempted to demonise Len by revealing he was returning home from an affair on the night he died. Despite this though, Rita would continue to fondly remember her husband, despite his faults.
Died: 2nd December 1983 (Aged 59)
Full Name: Leonard Franklin Fairclough
Children: Stanley Fairclough (1950)