Coronation Street producer Phil Collinson has defended new Weatherfield arrival Stella Price for her Northern accent.

Stella – played by former EastEnders actress Michelle Collins – joined the soap this week, with viewers tweeting that they expected her to have a Southern accent like her Albert Square alter-ego Cindy.

However Phil told This Morning, “I think the landlady of the Rovers Return would have to be a northern character really, I don’t think we could have had a southerner running the place.”

“I think her accent’s great,” he added. “The thing is people will just get used to it. Within a couple of weeks she’ll be Stella, she won’t be Cindy any more.”

Michelle has previously admitted that she was worried about getting her accent right – but said she hoped viewers would become accustomed to it.

“I know there will be people going ‘oh that’s awful, that’s not right,’ but you know, most people have different accents anyway, you can’t pin everybody down to one place,” the actress said.

“It’s hard doing an accent but you’ve got to not let that get in the way to be honest with you. Anyone who’s got an accent in anything, you’re always going to be worried about it and I don’t think it’s ever going to be 100 per cent, it just isn’t.

“But I think the more people get used to you, you create your own character, you are the person who’s speaking that role so you create that role and hopefully people believe what you say.”