The neighbouring property is Number 1 Coronation Street.
By 1960, Jack and Annie Walker had run the Rovers for 20 years. Their daughter Joan married in 1961 and their son Billy moved to London, making sporadic visits. In January 1962, Len Fairclough and Ken Barlow had a huge altercation over poshed up university graduate Ken slamming his working class roots in a local newspaper.
In 1970, Jack Walker died when visiting Joan in Derby. This left Annie devastated. Her son Billy Walker came back to Weatherfield from Jersey to take his late father's position. Billy was a bit of a dodgy dealer and would use underhand tactics. In 1975, when Deirdre Hunt chose Ray Langton over Billy, Billy left the area again.
In late 1975, the 66 year old Annie was quite vulnerable living alone in the private quarters above the pub. One night in November 1975 she was threatened by 2 robbers. Len and Ray wondered why there was lights on downstairs so went to investigate and they tackled the robbers, who were later caught. In early 1976, regular customers Stan Ogden and Albert Tatlock were accidentally locked in the cellar overnight and drunk much of the booze. Annie clearly could not cope running the pub alone, without a cellarman, and relying on draymen to take beer to and from the cellar. So the brewery insisted she get a live in potman. Step forward Fred Gee. He was to live on the premises with Annie. Annie felt safe again. Fred became good friends with Betty Turpin and Bet Lynch and often they had lots of banter with each other.
This was a period which saw huge change in the history of the pub. In late 1983, Annie Walker went on an extended holiday. She still kept in touch and gave instructions to Fred, Bet and Betty as to how to run the pub. Hilda was just a cleaner so did not have to worry about the running of the pub. In February 1984, Annie said she has left Betty in charge. Fred thought this was sexist, so as usual, he went over Annie's head and to the brewery. At his own reccomendation to the brewery, Fred was made manager. He took time off after eating a pie that made him violenty ill, and he was admitted to hospital. Billy Walker came to take over the running of the pub. In August 1984, Annie retired altogether and Billy took over as the licensee.
Billy said out of Bet, Betty, Fred and Hilda, that Fred has the biggest reason to discuss his future. Billy said Fred is not needed, and to look for a job and a place to live right away but can stay on until that happens. Fred fought back against Billy and said he should get compensation. Billy refused but Ken Barlow said Fred has a case.
Billy then decided there was a way to get rid of Fred without paying him a penny and that was to goad Fred into thumping him by working him into the ground and making vile insults to him so that he could sack him. Fred did seem to take the bait and a few times he almost came close to hitting Billy. Fred's best mate Jack Duckworth told Fred to wait until he gets his compo then he can smack him. One time Billy sarcastically asked a very agitated and irritated Fred if he is happy in his work. To Fred this was the straw that broke the camels back so he thumped him in front of all the customers. Billy sacked him on the spot. Fred took lodgings locally. He went from working at the pub to being a customer. Billy kept holding late night lock ins and buying cheap booze from wholesalers instead of the brewery, and doing underhand tactics so in December 1984, he was forced out of the brewery. This bought the 47 year Walker empire to an end. Billy left Weatherfield for good the following night. Also, Fred Gee left the area completeley in late 1984.
Gordon Lewis took over as relief manager. He said that Billy Walker, who had recently left the area, always was a law unto himself.
1985-1995EditIn January 1985, it was obvious that Annie Walker, Billy Walker and Fred Gee would be gone from the area forever. Bet, Betty and Hilda worked under Gordon Lewis at the start of the year. Gordon left on the 2nd January. Frank Harvey took over as relief manager in early January 1985. The pub was a more peaceful to work at now that loudmouth Fred Gee and devious scheming Billy were gone.
In February 1985, Bet was made landlady. She finally got the position after 15 years working as a barmaid behind the bar. Bet, Betty and Mavis went for a holiday to Blackpool that summer.
In June 1986, the lights started flickering and Bet asked potman Jack Duckworth to replace the fuse. Jack put a stronger fuse in and overnight the switch overheated and started a fire in the cellar which spread to the main bar. Bet was rescued. Vera reckoned it was Bet smoking in bed but a worried Jack wondered if it was the wrong fuse he put in.
The pub shut for a while but Alec Gilroy helped Bet Lynch to drum up business in the repopened Rovers. The snug was now part of the main bar, so was gone, and The Select and stage area was gone. Bet became Mrs Alec Gilroy in September 1987. In December 1987 cleaner Hilda Ogden decided to leave the grimy back streets of Weatherfield for Derbyshire so a party was held for her. Alec was pleased the nosey parker was going.
In March 1988 Bet found that she was pregnant again at almost 48 years old. She had a miscarriage. Bet and Alec spent the next few years running the pub together but they split up in 1992 and Alec left for Brighton.
In 1995, the brewery decided to put some of their pubs on the market and Bet wanted to buy the pub. She asked if best friend Rita Sullivan would invest. Rita said she would think about it. Bet jumped the gun and assumed that Rita was going to go into business with her. Rita told her to wait telling the brewery about knocking the price down to £66'000 but Bet still enquired about it.
In October 1995 Alf Roberts advised Rita on 3 reasons not to go into business with Bet. One was that Bet never offered a percentage of money, and also what if they had a row it would end their friendship and they would both be stuck running a pub. Also the third reason was the fact that Bet had never made any profit during her 10 years running the tenancy. Bet waltzed into The Kabin with champagne. Rita said Bet is jumping the gun. Rita said that she is dropping out. Bet's happiness soon turned to dismay. She said Rita is only rich because she married Len Fairclough. Bet says Rita does not know the meaning of the word pals. Rita says she is sorry. Bet asks her that she wont change her mind. Rita says she will not change her mind. Bet says she is sorry, sorry she ever asked. She then turns round and quietly walks out of the shop. Her friendship with Rita was over.
A day or 2 later, Bet surrendered her tenancy and decided to make a fresh start away from Weatherfield. She packed all her suitcases and took a look at herself in the Rovers bar mirror. In October 1995 Bet got into a taxi and the taxi drove out of Coronation Street. Bet put Weatherfield and The Rovers behind her.
1995-1999EditIn mid October 1995, now that Bet was gone, the pub was up for sale. The brewery swiftly shut the pub and said Bet is not returning. Rodney Bostock was bought in as temporary manager until a buyer could be found. Jim and Liz McDonald and Jack and Vera Duckworth jostled until Jack and Vera won. Jack had a criminal record so was not allowed to be licensee so Vera took the license.
The famous Rovers toilets leading into Ken's living room mysteryEditSince 1960 it has appeared that the toilet doors on the side of the wall dividing the pub and No 1 next door seem to lead straight into Albert Tatlock/Ken Barlow's living room. That may have explained why he was so grumpy. There was not enough space inbetween the pub and No 1 to even have a small corridor with a stairwell going downstairs into the toilets which may have been underground. In 1982 when the second outdoor set was built, a small alleyway was built inbetween the pub and No 1 to avoid confusion. However in the early years of the show, there was an alleyway inbetween the pub and No 1, when the show filmed in a studio.
From 1960 to 1986, the Rovers interior was much larger than the exterior. Such as the Rovers toilets seeming to lead into Albert's living room and also the Snug, Select and stage area seemed to be in Rosamund Street. The pub was always established as being on the corner of Coronation Street and Rosamund Street, and looking at the pub from the front, there clearly was not enough space to fit the main bar, Snug and Select. TARDIS style. The fire of June 1986 gave the production team the chance to rectify this. A storyline was written when the pub caught fire due to an electrical fault, where Jack Duckworth replaced the fuse with a stronger fuse after the pub lights begun to flicker. However this extra surge of electricity started a fire in the early hours of the next morning. After the fire, the pub's interior was redrawn to match the exterior more, the Snug was removed as was the Select, and the size of the main bar matched the exterior, although the private living quarters at the back still seemed to extend across Rosamund Street.