So, Billy the vicar isn’t playing away. His mystery man is his brother, Lee, who’s a drug addict and an ex-con. Coronation Street’s Daniel Brocklebank explains Billy’s family history to Soaplife…
How does the truth come out about Lee?
“When Lee’s caught with his fingers in the till at Preston’s Petals and Todd makes to call the police, Billy’s forced to come clean about his connection to this lad. He admits to Todd [Bruno Langley] that they’re brothers, not lovers – Lee [Richard Crehan] is a heroin addict who’s just been released from jail.”
Why is Billy ashamed of Lee?
“It’s complicated! He’s ashamed and embarrassed about the way Lee’s ended up. It all stems from when the brothers were younger.”
What happened to them?
“They had a very rough childhood. Their mother upped and left when they were small, and their father became an alcoholic who threw Billy out when Billy came out as gay. Lee never learnt the truth and thought his big brother had abandoned him like his mother had done.”
Did Billy ever return?
“At one point he did go back and try to fix things, but his father threw him out again.”
Does Billy feel responsible for Lee losing his way?
“I think that’s part of it. Billy’s ashamed of himself because he feels he could have done more to help Lee.”
Why has Billy never told Sean about Lee?
“The shame thing again. But when Sean [Antony Cotton] finds out that Billy’s kept this part of his life secret, it may well cause problems in their relationship.”
“Sean thinks they’ve been completely honest and open with each other, but Billy clearly hasn’t. Billy’s guilt ridden about this – it goes against everything he stands for as a vicar and as a person. To be duplicitous is just not his way of doing things.”
Will Sean be able to forgive Billy?
“I hope so. Sometimes I think with vicars’ characters we sort of forget they’re just people and can mess up like anyone else. With this storyline I hope we’re reminding everyone that although Billy is a vicar he’s also just a person and therefore capable of making mistakes as well.”
Coronation Street, ITV