Peter Francis Barlow is a character in Coronation Street who was born during the shows run in April 1965 and has appeared on and off since then. He is the alcoholic son of Ken Barlow. He last appeared in July 2015 for the funeral of his step mother Deirdre Barlow. Peter returned in October 2016. Peter has since 2000 been played by Chris Gascoyne.
Peter Francis Barlow was born on the 5th April 1965 to Ken and Val Barlow. Peter was born alongside his twin sister Susan Barlow. Peter was the younger of the twins, born moments after Susan.
After the death of ex-wife Lucy, Peter turned up on the street in October 2008 with their son Simon looking for some support from Ken. Peter explained the situation that Lucy had been back in the United Kingdom for a while, and recently contacted him after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Her request was for him to look after their son after her passing. But the prospect for fatherhood becomes too much for Peter to handle, and during a drink with Ken in the pub he exceeds his limits and starts asking random people if they want to buy Simon. But the next morning, Peter shows regret for this.
He buys the bookies with money Lucy left him (on the condition he looks after Simon) and becomes attracted to the staff member Leanne Battersby. But when the pair put up the Christmas tree together Peter drinks too much and tries to make a pass at her, resulting in him being pushed over. His alcoholism further gets out of control when he turns up at Simon's nativity drunk and is kicked out the school. That evening he turns up at Ken's demanding to see Simon, but is refused and it takes Deirdre and Leanne to stop Peter hitting his father. A tearful Peter then walks off.
Peter returns to Portsmouth to deal with some business down there and to also see to Adam. He books himself into rehab, but later lets himself go without informing anyone and goes off on a cruise with another woman, whilst letting Leanne run the Bookies. He turns back up in March 2009 but his behaviour is exposed and Leanne leaves the street, despite Peter's pleas and trying to use Simon to change her mind. That same month Peter gets drunk and falls asleep in the flat and accidentally drops a lit cigarette, leading to a fire. Peter and Simon are rescued by Luke Strong and Tony Gordon, who also save Peter and Simon's pet rabbit (named Leanne. When Simon is in the hospital bed Peter breaks down and realises he needs to change for Simon's sake. Within a few weeks the bookies and flat is refurbished and back into business.
Peter was informed on the death of Deirdre in July 2015. Although he was late for the funeral, he turned up at No.1 shortly afterwards during a heated row between Ken and Tracy, after Ken caught her in the process of having sex in the living room with ex-husband Robert Preston. After they all let off steam, they made up and reminisced about Deirdre. Peter left the next morning to travel to the Caribbean for work he was doing.
Later that year Leanne sent Simon to live with Peter in Portsmouth after suffering abuse from him (which everyone was unaware of). Simon returned back to Weatherfield after a few weeks, complaining that Peter was too busy working and now has a new girlfriend called Sharon (although he then began claiming he had a good time just to spite Leanne). When it came out Simon was abusive towards Leanne, Ken contacted Peter about the matter who gave his sympathies. Ken also revealed that Peter blamed himself for Simon's behaviour.
Peter reappeared in October 2016 sporting a graze on his head, which he puts down to an 'accident'. Things continue to be sour when Ken gets fed up with Peter's lies, but during another heated argument Ken collapses and suffers a stroke. Peter feels guilty over the incident, which isn't helped when Tracy starts blaming him for Ken's failing health. Peter plans to once again leave, but a sickly Ken builds up the courage to convince his son to stay. Peter decided to stay in Weatherfield. Now dating Toyah Battersby, Peter moved into The Rovers when him and Toyah bought the place and she became landlady in July 2017.
Peter was caught off guard by Billy Mayhew in October 2017 during a heated argument. Peter later vouched for Billy when Billy apologised. The police had taken Billy's fingerprints when he confessed to hitting Peter, and due to this, they matched those found on a burned out car which was torched after a 2001 robbery. Further investigation revealed this to be Susan Barlow. Peter has not yet known that Billy was involved in the death of his twin sister even though the truth has now emerged.
Billy later told Peter and Peter later got Billy drunk and kidnapped him to make him feel what Susan must have felt when she was dying of her injuries, and not being able to see Adam grow up. Peter took Billy to a cliff edge and scared him into thinking he let the car in reverse and off the cliff. Billy was laying down in the boot. Peter drove forward and wanted to scare Billy. He untied Billy and got him out of the boot, told him to find his own way back. Billy slipped. Peter did not want Billy's death on his conscience so tried to save him. Billy let go and fell down into the ravine, about 20 feet. He must have gone to the John Stape School of How to survive a long fall as like Stape 6 years earlier, Billy survived. A passer by called and the emergency services said that something broke his fall.
Behind the ScenesEdit
- Peter was introduced as the son of Ken Barlow and Valerie Barlow in 1965 along with his twin sister Susan Barlow. The pair weren't credited until 1970. Peter has been played by a total of seven actors, John Heannau from 1965 to 1970, Christopher Dormer from 1970 to 1971, Mark Duncan in 1971, Linus Roache (the real life son of William Roache who plays Ken) for sporadic appearances from 1973 to 1975, Joseph McKenna from 1977 to 1978, David Lonsdale in 1986 and then Chris Gascoyne who has been playing the role on and off since December 2000.
- Linus Roache would later play Ken's other son Lawrence Cunningham for a few episodes in 2010. Funnily enough, Lawrence and Peter shared a scene in the Rovers Return. David Lonsdale would go onto play two separate characters, a legal investigator in 2011 and then Edwin Soames in 2012.
- Peter was made a regular character upon his return during the 40th Anniversary in December 2000, with Chris Gascoyne taking over the part. Chris remained as Peter before leaving in 2003. He returned for a 3 month stint in early 2007, then returned again as a full time cast member in October 2008.
- Peter was absent from July to December 2012 as Gascoyne took a break from Coronation Street.
- In mid-2013, Gascoyne announced his plans to leave the role again at the end of his contract, which was due to end in 2014. Shortly after it was announced Peter would be having an affair with local barmaid Tina McIntyre (played by Michelle Keegan), which ran for several months and tied with Tina's murder in May 2014. Peter left the show in November 2014.
- In April 2015 it was announced Chris Gascoyne will be returned in the summer of 2015 for a few episodes to tie with the passing of Deirdre Barlow after actress Anne Kirkbride died in January 2015. The character returned for two episodes in July 2015.
- In June 2016 Kate Oates revealed her plans to bring back Peter Barlow as a permanent character, and for the reintroduction of other Barlow family members including Ken's other son Daniel Osbourne and grandson Adam Barlow. Peter made his on-screen return on the 17 October 2016. This will be his third stint in the show as a regular.
Appearances: 5 April 1965–29 September 1971, 15–24 October 1973, 25 March 1974, 16–28 April 1975, 22 August–7 September 1977, 21 August–25 October 1978, 31 March–14 May 1986, 8 December 2000–9 November 2003, 8 January–20 April 2007, 29 October 2008–14 November 2014, 15–16 July 2015, 17 October 2016–
Full Name: Peter Francis Barlow
Children: Simon Barlow (2003)
Cousins: Darren Barlow