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Maggie Jones, One of UK Soaps Nastiest Mother in Laws Dies
Celebrity Deaths 2009
The Death of Actress Maggie Jones.
Margaret Jones as she was originally known was born in Yorkshire in 1934. Margaret was a graduate of RADA, the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1954. By the time Maggie was 20 she had begun her acting career appearing in many stage production and theatres around the UK.
Over the years Maggie became famous in the UK as a battle-axe of a mother and mother-in-law, in Britain's longest Soap Opera, Coronation Street. Originally in the UK, though, such shows were called kitchen sink dramas.
In fact Maggie first appeared in Coronation Street when the show was still in its infancy. Coronation Street launched in late 1960 and Maggie appeared in a single episode in 1961. In this performance Maggie played a young policewoman.
This appearance was followed by various television appearances on other shows. She became a regular on both Sam and The Forsyte Saga at different times. There was another brief appearance in Coronation Street in another small part which required only a brief appearance.
In 1974 Maggie Jones joined the regular cast of Coronation Street as attractive young Deidre Barlow's Mother, Blanche Hunt. The rest as they is history.
Coronation Street fans at home and abroad loved Blanche's acid tongue. The character of Blanche had originally been played by another actress but sadly this woman committed suicide after only two episodes of the show.
Maggie remained a regular actress in Coronation Street until 1976. After this time her appearances were on a more occasional basis. For the next twenty odd years Maggie would pop up in many British Television shows. However in 1999, she joined the Coronation Street regulars again and almost became part of the fixtures and fittings.
Over the years her character has become cantankerous, nasty at times, rude, ignorant, and selfish. Her daughter Deidre has carried on being the long suffering daughter as Blanche shares Deidre's marital home with husband Ken also.
There have been the rare occasions when Blanche has shown some caring feelings and common decency but these have been few and far between. She has played the embittered older woman to perfection.
Coronation Street will certainly never be quite the same again.
Maggie had been ill for a few months but seemed to be making a recovery. However she passed away peacefully in Hospital today.
The press have reported that when the news of Maggie's death was announced on the set of Coronation Street the cast and crew burst into a spontaneous round of applause. Unlike the character Blanche, it appears that Maggie was funny,warm, a real character and much loved by all. In other words totally the opposite of Blanche which shows just how good an actress Maggie was.
Update January 20, 2015: Anne Kirkbride, Corrie's Dierdre Barlow dies aged 60