Coronation Street star Katherine Kelly is being tipped to take the lead in a new musical based on the soap, according to the papers.

The News Of The World reports that the show will be launched in Manchester later this year as part of Corrie’s 50th birthday celebrations – and that Kelly, who plays Becky McDonald, will star.

“Katherine is a huge name to sign up,” an insider working on the musical told the paper. “She’s got this amazing voice that nobody knows about. This musical will be the centrepiece of our celebrations.”

The actress is thought to have agreed a deal with show bosses to take a break from the show in order to appear in the production.

“Becky is a very important character in the show and we don’t want to lose her,” a source added.

“Katherine really wants to do the musical so she’ll probably take a few months off for it and then return.

“Doing both would probably be too much for her. But the details of how it’s going to work are still being discussed.”

Further details of the musical are being kept under wraps, although it is thought it will involve some of the soap’s biggest storylines from the past.

“They’ve got so much to choose from,” the source said. “But a lot of the action will be at the Rovers Return. There’ll be serious, romantic and light- hearted songs. It will combine everything that Corrie is about.”