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Coronation Street's Norris Cole's soap future revealed after Malcolm Hebden's heart attack

Malcolm has been off work all year

Hanna Fillingham

At the end of last year, Coronation Street favourite Malcolm Hebden, who plays Norris Cole in the ITV soap, was taken to hospital after suffering multiple heart attacks, and has been signed off work ever since. But luckily the fan favourite is thought to be recovering well, and on Tuesday his co-star Patti Clare, who plays Mary Taylor in the show, gave hope that Norris will be making a return to the cobbles next year. Appearing on This Morning, Patti was asked about the talk of Malcolm returning by Phillip Schofield. She said: "Allegedly. He's in Peru at the moment. Mary speaks to him on the phone often, so there's a faint sort of whisper that he might be back, maybe next year?"

Coronation Street's Norris Cole could return next year

In the show, Norris went away to Peru with Emily Bishop, and fans have sorely missed their on-screen banter. Malcolm suffered a silent heart attack in December, and later opened up about his terrifying health scare. He told Blackpool Gazette: "Most of December I was in an induced coma, in the care of these brilliant, wonderful people at the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU). Fortunately I didn’t realise how bad I was, I was dying." Malcolm continued to explain that he had "at least one heart attack," and that it had torn a hole in his heart. "They operated and took a chance," he added.

MORE: Coronation Street spoilers: 5 November to 9 November

Malcolm Hebden has been off work after suffering multiple heart attacks

News of Malcolm's hospitalisation led to false reports that he had passed away back in January, and his friend and co-star Sally Ann Matthews, who plays Jenny Bradley, reassured fans that the stories were "thankfully" not true. Malcolm added that his return to Corrie would entirely depend on his recovery. He previously suffered a health scare back in 2012 when he fell ill on the set of the soap and was taken to A&E, only to return to filming just a few hours later.

READ: Brooke Vincent talks leaving Coronation Street

Malcolm has played loveable Norris since 1994. The character is much-loved for his comedic lines and chemistry with Mary Taylor – played by Patti Clare - and Rita Sullivan – played by Barbara Knox. Malcolm and Barbara even took away the award for Best Onscreen Partnership at the British Soap Awards in 2006. Norris was also named the 'Funniest Character' at the Inside Soap Awards in 2001 and 2002.

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