Tina and Ryan were a couple in real life as well as on the ITV soap, where she is about to return as Sarah-Louise Platt and he has continued playing Jason Grimshaw.
The actress, who shares six-year-old daughter Scarlett with her co-star, says: “Ryan has been really supportive. He knew [about my return] from the very early stages because I discussed it with him. He was really good about it and said, ‘I think it will be brilliant for you’.”
Sarah-Louise (Tina O’Brien) and Jason (Ryan Thomas) cosy up in Coronation Street alongside Bethany (Lucy Fallon) (ITV)
Tina also has a five-month-old son Beau with partner Adam Crofts. She says: “We are a very ‘modern family’. We spent Christmas morning all together this year for the first time. It was lovely.”
However, on screen things are a little more awkward as Sarah-Lou’s teenage daughter Bethany (Lucy Fallon) is stirring things between her mum and Jason.
Tina says: “She keeps telling Jason that Sarah has got a shrine of him, and he thinks that Sarah is still madly in love with him!”
Sarah-Louise (Tina O’Brien) is back in Corrie with daughter Bethany (Lucy Fallon) (ITV)
“I feel incredibly lucky to have been offered this opportunity,” says Tina. “When I first started, I was 16 and had just left high school, and I left at 24, as I felt I really needed to branch out and see the world. It was almost like it was time to leave uni.
“Now, I’m older and feel I have tried different things. To be a working actress and to have a job in Manchester, and in something as massive as Coronation Street, I am very lucky and certainly don’t take it for granted.”
Coronation Street airs on ITV on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Sarah-Louise Platt returns on Monday, March 30.