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Coronation Street star Barbara Knox admits drink driving charge

rita tanner © Photo: ITV
January 23, 2015
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Barbara Knox has been banned from driving for a year after admitting to a drink-driving charge. The 81-year-old, who plays Rita Tanner in Coronation Street, had originally denied the accusation, but changed her plea as she was due to be tried at Crewe Magistrates' Court on Friday. As well as a ban, Barbara was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay costs of £1,750.

barbara knox © Photo: Getty Images

Soap star Barbara Knox has admitted the charge of drink-driving

Judge Brigid Knight told the star that it was "regretful" her original not guilty plea had wasted the court's time and money. Barbara's lawyer accepted that the actress was "the author of her own misfortune", adding that his client "considers drink-driving to be serious". Barbara was arrested last March after arriving at Knutsford police station to bail out her daughter Maxine Ashcroft, who had also been arrested on suspicion of drink driving. Maxine was later banned from driving for two years after being nearly three times over the legal limit. A spokesperson for Cheshire Police confirmed at the time, "Police have charged an 80-year-old woman with drink driving following an incident in Knutsford on 10 March 2014. The woman turned up at Knutsford Police Station in relation to a separate matter and was arrested."

rita tanner © Photo: ITV

Barbara Knox has played Rita Tanner in Coronation Street since 1972

Barbara is one of Coronation Street's longest-serving cast members, having played the role of Rita since 1972. She received a lifetime achievement award at the British Soap Awards in 2004, and in 2010 was awarded an MBE for her services to drama.

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