Michelle Collins has revealed she quit Coronation Street because the long commute to work was driving her crazy.
The soap actress – who lives in London with her 18-year-old daughter Maia – has been travelling to Manchester to star as Rovers landlady Stella Price in Corrie, and told The Sun it was leaving her exhausted.
“I threw myself wholeheartedly into Corrie but I ended up spreading myself far too thinly. Like a lot of working mums, I worked so b****y hard and I was just tired all the time.
“I ran myself ragged and the last person I thought to look after was me. The tiredness is the worst, it can make you a zombie. Work is fantastic, but it’s not the be-all and end-all. You have to have some quality of life as well.
“That’s what Corrie has taught me. If you don’t have a work-life balance it can start to drive you a bit crazy.
“So I had to step back and say ‘I can’t be Superwoman. I just can’t do everything’.”
Michelle has been at the centre of some major storylines during her three years in the soap. But last month she agreed with fans on Twitter who complained about her lack of screen time. The actress told the newspaper that had made it easier for her to leave.
She said: “I would have loved to have been more involved in the Hayley and Roy right-to-die storyline, because it was brilliant. You do feel a bit left out when everyone comes back to the green room after those big emotional scenes.
“But you can’t expect to be at the front of the show all of the time. And if I was still centre stage it might have been harder for me to walk away.”
Michelle hasn’t ruled out a return in the future.
“The producer, Stuart Blackburn, did try to persuade me to stay,” she revealed. “But he understood that I was doing it for Maia and that she had to come first. And he agreed to leave the door open for Stella.
“I was really pleased about that. I didn’t want her to be killed off in a big, explosive storyline.”