It’s been a turbulent time on the Cobbles of late, with so many actors coming and going that we’ve found it hard to keep up.

So here is our handy guide to all the actors leaving, returning and joining Coronation Street…

[Read more: All the latest soap news and spoilers]

Christmas Return

Carla Connor (Alison King) 

Alison King - Carla Connor

After months of rumours, Alison King has confirmed that she is heading back to Coronation Street. The soap favourite will make a dramatic return to the Cobbles at Christmas.

Producer Kate Oates told Radio Times: “It’s time to break new ground with Carla. I didn’t want to put her on that familiar cycle of self-destruction, recovery, followed by more self-destruction.

“What we’ll have instead are these two strong Connor women – Carla and Michelle (played by Kym Marsh) – on opposing sides and in conflict for a change.”

The former Emmerdale producer continued: “The presence of strong women was the backbone of the show as Tony Warren created it.

“The tone and content of the stories have moved on, and so have the female characters, but that strength has still to be there for it to be truly Corrie.

“On Emmerdale, I was uncomfortably aware that I’d been responsible for the deaths of a number of women characters and I didn’t want to repeat that. I did feel like I was punishing the women.

“When the sense of the downtrodden is relentless, the audience starts to disengage. So on Coronation Street, I wanted to see the characters face trauma, but to come out the other end. There had to be journeys of triumph and strength.”

Leaving

Anna Windass (Debbie Rush)

anna windass

Anna has been on the cobbles for almost a decade but will shortly be departing the Street for good. The long-suffering Anna has most recently been blackmailed by evil Phelan, and it’s rumoured he may be the one to finish poor Anna off.

Whether Anna lives or dies is unknown, but Corrie producer Kate Oates told WhatsOnTV that either way, Anna will bow out with a bang.

“Debbie’s decision to pursue other roles will allow us to play an exciting exit story for Anna, which will see her fighting for her family and tackling old enemies head-on,” said Oates.

Erica Holroyd (Claire King)

claire king

Claire King has played Erica Holroyd for the last three years, but will be leaving at some point this summer, though she’s already hinted that the door may be left open for her saucy and strong-willed character to return.

Claire released a public statement saying:

“It’s been a dream come true to tread those famous cobbles. I was only meant to stay for six weeks initially, so for Erica to be so popular that she stayed for three years and even worked in the Rovers was a real compliment to me as an actress.

“I’ve had such a great time with the cast and crew, so it’s fabulous that they have left the door open for Erica to return in the future. Who knows what adventures she’ll be getting up to away from the Street? She’s certainly not boring.

As for me, I’m ready for another challenge. I’m not leaving the screen anytime soon, so watch this space.”

Joining

Imogen (Melissa Johns)

Pictures from the set of Corrie have emerged featuring actress Melissa Johns as the mysterious Imogen. Little is known about Imogen’s character but Melissa hopes her role will help break down barriers for disabled actresses, as she was born with only one arm.

“Something like Coronation Street, which goes into people's living rooms practically every night, has an opportunity to change the way society views things like race, relationships and disability," Melissa told Digital Spy.

Melissa has also appeared in Doctors and The Interceptor.

Remaining secretive on her new role, Melissa simply said: “All I can say is my character is a 5'4" blonde.”

Vic Reeves/Colin

Vic Reeves

Reeves, real name Jim Moir, will play television presenter Colin who comes to Weatherfield to film with Norris and Mary after they are chosen to make an appearance on his show. It’s not long before Colin finds himself embroiled in the lives of other street residents.

Jim will begin filming a three month stint in July. He will be on screen from late summer.

“I've been a lifelong fan of Corrie. In fact, I think I saw the very first one. I try not to miss any episodes," said the comic.

"I'm really looking forward to acting in Corrie. It's a real thrill to be part of a British Institution.”

Coronation Street Executive Producer Kieran Roberts said: "Jim is such a well-loved entertainer and a brilliant actor so we're thrilled he's joining the cast of Coronation Street."

Returning

Andy Carver (Oliver Farnworth)

andy

It may have looked like poor Andy was killed off by Phelan, but it's just been revealed that he's very much alive. For the last seven months he's been kept hostage in a derelict building by evil builder Phelan, whose reason for keeping Andy alive for all this time is still completely unknown. 

[Read more: Oliver Farnworth on his epic Corrie return]

Oliver Farnworth whose been playing Andy Carver since November 2014, said that as Phelan's captive he's become the only one that truly knows him: "It is a very controlling relationship, Andy never knows who will walk through that door as Phelan is so many different people. It is almost like Phelan has got him there as something to rage at, talk at and doesn’t feel he needs to hold anything back from Andy so he has seen many sides of him." 

Time will tell when and if Andy is able to escape Phelan's clutches, but preview images have already revealed that he is set to attack Phelan with a rope.

Emily Bishop (Eileen Derbyshire)

emily bishop

We last saw Corrie legend Emily Bishop at the end of 2016 when she abruptly left the Street to do charity work in Peru and visit her nephew and Corrie alumnus Spider Nugent.

Actress Eileen Derbyshire has been playing Emily since 1961, and decided to take a sabbatical from the soap. However, it’s been rumoured since April that she will be returning to Corrie at some point this year. Watch this space.

Jude Appleton/Paddy Wallace

Jude, the long-lost son of eccentric spinster Mary Taylor, first appeared on the cobbles at Christmas last year following an online campaign to find him. Mary gave birth to Jude having been raped as a 14-year-old, and gave him up for adoption. 
Paddy Wallace proved a big hit with viewers and tabloids report that his character will return, bringing his South African family with him.

Photo credits: ITV except where stated.