Coronation Street newcomer Michelle Collins talks to Soaplife magazine about her character Stella’s quick move into The Rovers and hints at more drama to come

So, where has Stella come from?
“She’s been running a pub in the countryside close to Weatherfield. She’s been a landlady for most of her working life. She specialises in taking on failing pubs and turning them around.”

What’s she like?
“She’s very likeable. She’s strong and feisty, but also very funny. She makes a great landlady because she’s very warm and welcoming.”

Is she a bit ‘Mutton’ like Liz MacDonald?
“Absolutely not! Stella’s in her Forties and likes to look good, but in a stylish, sophisticated way.”

Steve makes her bar manager and before he can say ‘Pull a pint’ she’s moved in with her partner and daughter! She didn’t mention them!
“No. She doesn’t want to put Steve off offering her the job so she doesn’t give him the complete picture. Steve’s shocked when Stella moves her family in, but he’s too stressed over Becky to do anything about it. Stella and Karl aren’t married, but have been together for about five years so he’s not the father of Stella’s 22-year-old daughter, Eva. Stella’s daughter is her weakness, I think. She spoils her and Eva can wrap Stella round her little finger.”

Does Stella have any other children?
“It doesn’t appear that she does at this stage, but you’ll have to wait and see!”

We know Stella has a huge secret that is connected to someone in the Street…
“She does have one big skeleton in her closet. Let’s just say there’s a reason she’s come to Coronation Street. It’s a fantastic storyline and I’m very, very excited about it.”

Back to The Rovers… How’s it going to work with Stella and Becky?
“Stella’s firm, but fair and certainly not judgmental; she’s had plenty of ups and downs herself. I think Stella will actually relate to Becky in quite a big way, even though they’re quite different.”

Steve’s marriage is falling apart as Stella arrives. Any chance they’ll have an affair?
“I haven’t a clue, but I doubt it, especially at this stage. Stella can be a flirt, but she’s very much in love with Karl. They have an extremely passionate, physical relationship!”