Coronation Street star Anne Kirkbride has passed away aged 60.
ITV released a short statement simply saying:
'It is with great sadness that David Beckett has confirmed tonight that his beloved wife and Coronation Street actress Anne Kirkbride has passed away peacefully in a Manchester hospital after a short illness.'
The actress, who played Deirdre Barlow for 43 years, announced in September she was taking a three month break from the show.
She was expected to make her long-awaited return to Coronation Street this month.
Anne was previously diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 1993, but following successful treatment returned to the soap within 12 months.