TV soap’s explanation for church cross fiasco

Reports that Coronation Street directors wanted to hide a cross during filming for a church wedding scene are the result of a misunderstanding, the soap’s bosses claim.

The story hit the headlines on Wednesday with newspapers reporting that the church’s brass cross, which is bolted to the altar, was hidden with candles and flowers to avoid ‘offending’ viewers.

At the time a spokesman for Granada, the company that makes the show, said: “Covering up the cross was an error and we apologise for any upset.” Granada promised to look into the incident.

Following an investigation, programme makers say it was all a misunderstanding.

The ITV website carries this statement from a Coronation Street spokesman: “Contrary to claims that the programme’s producers wanted the cross moving as they were worried its inclusion would offend people, what actually happened was that they wanted to move the cross so that it was not hidden.

“A member of crew knew that they were dressing the set with candles and flowers and knew this would obstruct the view of the cross. A member of church staff was asked if the cross could be moved.

“When she asked why they wanted it moving, she was told that Coronation Street didn’t want to cause offence to anyone when the scenes were shown.

“It now transpires that she took this to mean that production felt people would be offended by seeing the cross – when in fact they were concerned that the props were blocking the view of the cross.

“In fact during the Wednesday episode of Coronation Street a shot of the cross was seen.”

The spokesperson continued: “We have now made this clear to the Reverend Milnes who is going to explain this to his parishioners and we apologise for this misunderstanding.”

Producers have not commented on why, having realised the cross was bolted to the altar and could not be moved, they didn’t simply move the elaborate candelabra and flowers which they placed directly in front of the cross.

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