Corrie fans will recognise drama teacher Nigel from iconic BBC EastEnders role

Coronation Street fans have been left fuming over the ‘ridiculous’ drama club storyline involving Mary, Ken, Brian and Wendy recently.

The slapstick plot has meant Ken had the opportunity to rekindle his old romances with not one but two women – Wendy Crozier and Martha Fraser.

And at the centre of all this – ahem – drama is instructor Nigel Kipling.

READ MORE: Coronation Street will pay tribute to two soap legends in 'moving' Christmas scenes

Nigel first joined the cobbles when pal Mary Taylor later recruited him and his acting troupe as part of her disastrous efforts to pass her son Jude off as a marine biologist.

He later appeared as part of Asha Alahan’s skin lightening storyline, where he was helping the students at Weatherfield High put on a production of Bugsy Malone.

But what about the actor in real life?

Nigel is played by Richard Elis, who rose to fame as cheeky Welsh chappy Huw Edwards in rival BBC soap EastEnders, from 1996 until 1999.

The squatter was one of Ian Beale’s enemies on the soap, after the fan-favourite – played by Adam Woodyatt – attempted to have him evicted several times.

Huw’s other storylines included setting up a pirate radio station and developing a crush on Ruth Fowler, before he eventually left Walford with Carrie Swann.

At the time of landing the role, actor Richard was still in drama school himself at the Welsh College of Music and Drama.

He landed the role when he was given just two minutes on stage to impress the gathered casting ages, before being asked to audition for EastEnders. He was originally contracted for just three episodes, which later saw his contract extended into three years.

Speaking about the iconic role, Richard said: “I don't think I really realised the enormity of it at the time as it all happened so quickly, I didn't have time to panic or worry about what I was letting myself in for.

“At the end of the day, I had literally just graduated from college and had no idea that I was going to be playing the role for any longer than three episodes so I suppose I didn't really have time to be nervous.

“One day I was a student about to leave college in Cardiff and then I'm on the set of EastEnders with Barbara Windsor.”

He eventually claimed in 2010 that he decided to quit EastEnders as he feared being typecast.

Richard said: “My agent at the time told me that if you are in a soap for three years, it takes three years for the viewers to forget you, whereas if you are in one for five years, it takes another 10 years before they forget you.

“I just felt it was time to go. It was great to be on it but it was just a job to me.”

Since then, Richard has appeared in everything from Doctors to Bittersweet Symphony.

Coronation Street airs on ITV and ITVX

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