For three decades Johnny Briggs entertained tens of millions as Coronation Street’s unforgettable factory boss Mike Baldwin. Now after the death of the soap legend at the age of 85, we look back at the extraordinary life of the much-loved star. From his childhood as a war evacuee to his incredible success on the cobbles, to wild claims he had bedded a thousand women, the straight-talking actor was a firm favourite of fans. Born in London’s Battersea in 1935, as a boy Johnny was evacuated to the countryside during World War II. Author Alan Ravenscroft later recalled of that time: “Johnny used to come to our school for woodwork lessons. He had a cockney accent but soon got into Winsford ways and found out what a jam butty was.” After returning to London Johnny embarked on a career in show business back aged 12, attending famed stage school Italia Conti Academy. He served in Germany for two years with the Royal Tank Regiment before launching his acting career with roles in several Carry On movies and ITV police drama No Hiding Place. But it was only in 1976 that he would land the role which would define his career, and… Read full this story
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