Coronation Street star Samia Smith has admitted that she cracked under the pressure from the last live episode of the soap.

The star, who plays Maria Connor in the show, was a relative newcomer when its 40th anniversary was marked by a live episode.

And it is set to go live again on December 9, with a special hour-long episode – focused around the dramatic Weatherfield tram crash – to mark the 50th anniversary.

“I’d only been in the Street for eight months when we did the live episode for the 40th anniversary,” Samia told Inside Soap magazine, “so it was really scary.

“But now I’m really excited about the one which is coming up.”

I have to remember not to collapse in a heap just before transmission, which is what I did last time,” the actress added Poor Alan Halsall (aka Tyrone Dobbs) had to drag me up off the floor while the theme music was playing!”

Samia also praised the soap for always showing viewers “something to laugh at”.

“The secret is the light and shade, mixing comedy with drama. The show always seems to have got that balance right,” she said.