Stars on Coronation Street are becoming increasingly worried by the soap’s growing number of same-sex plotlines, according to reports.
One Corrie insider has said: “It’s not a happy place to be at the moment – and there is growing unrest that the show is losing its way.”
The soap currently features two lesbians, four homosexual men and a transsexual.
Former Corrie star Nick Cochrane, who played Andy McDonald, said: “It’s unrealistic. Would one road in a working class area generally produce that number of gay people?”
“I’ve got plenty of gay friends”, he explained, “but they don’t all live in a street full of gay people. How many streets in Britain would have schoolgirl lesbians, gay married couples, a transsexual and children to gay couples? It is a little bit far-fetched.”
He said the soap was not “the right platform to highlight so many gay issues all at the same time”.
And Corrie legend Jean Alexander, 85 – who played Hilda Ogden for 23 years – has said three homosexual storylines is “excessive”.
Sean Tully and Marcus Dent are set to be involved in the soap’s first civil partnership this summer and their storyline will also feature bringing up a child.
The Street is also home to lesbian characters Sophie Webster and Sian Powers. The actresses who play the roles have made a number of high profile media comments about the storyline.
The character Todd Grimshaw has now returned to the show, with his boyfriend Jools and the soap has also featured a transsexual character, Hayley Cropper.
The soap has attracted controversy regarding its storylines since homosexual producer Phil Collinson joined the programme last year.
He told The Sun in December that it is “an amazing platform” that really makes “a difference to the way people think.
“What’s transmitted on Monday night people talk about in pubs, clubs and at work the next day,” he said.
“You can really make a difference to the way people think – and this show has always had a gay sensibility.”
Ben Summerskill, chief executive of homosexual rights charity Stonewall, claims about six per cent of the population is homosexual – and more in and around cities.
“So of 66 Corrie characters”, he added, “it’s not in the least inconceivable that more than four might be gay.”
The Office of National Statistics reported last year that just one per cent of the UK’s population is homosexual.