Coronation Street‘s Chris Gascoyne has hailed his young co-star Alex Bain for his performance during his current custody battle storyline.

Alex plays Simon Barlow, the son of Chris’s character Peter, who has become embroiled in a custody battle with estranged wife Leanne over his relationship with fellow alcoholic Carla Connor.

Chris admitted it has hard to see Alex cry during the emotional scenes.

He said: “It’s hard for him to do that. He has coped with it really well and we try to make it a bit of fun.

“The story is hard because it happens to so many people and it affects you and it’s heartbreaking to even play it out.

“He has done great and it’s not been an easy storyline for him, or any of us, it’s a tough thing to portray.”

Eight-year-old Alex won Best Young Performance at the British Soap Awards 2011.

Viewers are set to see Peter give Simon to Leanne so he can run away with Carla.

Chris said of his character: “He panics and it’s probably for Simon’s sake that he gives him to Leanne. He is making decisions that he thinks will make everything alright again but actually he’s not making any right decisions and it’s just a mess.

“He’s desperate and he wants to put things right for Simon but he’s all over the place.”