CORONATION Street legend Eileen Derbyshire’s husband of 56 years has died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s, her son has revealed.
The 89-year-old star‘s husband Thomas W. Holt sadly passed away last weekend with the couple’s only son, Oliver Holt, by his bedside.
Eileen – who has played Emily Bishop for 58 years – had been with the retired engineer since they met in early 1964, and the couple resided in a large cottage in Cheshire.
Their son Oliver, who is a sports journalist, revealed his father’s death as he wrote about their shared love of football in his column for Mail Online.
He recalled how his beloved dad took him to his first game at Stockport County’s Edgeley Park and said mourning him had made him realise what football really means to fans who have been unable to go to games as the coronavirus pandemic rumbles on.
Oliver wrote: “My dad never forgot Stockport even when he was deep into his struggle with Alzheimer’s Disease.
“He wanted to go back there and revisit all the places of his youth. Sometimes, he asked me if I’d give him the bus fare for the journey …
“I hope those who run the game do not forget how vital these (smaller) clubs are to the social fabric of this country, how they still glue families together when so much of the glue is dissolving.”
It’s thought that Tom had been poorly for sometime.
Eileen – who still holds the title as the longest serving female on a soap opera – left Corrie in 2015.
She was granted time off by bosses for personal reasons and executives said she refused to call time on her career as one of the biggest names in soap.
They insisted the door has been left open for her to return at any time, although there are “no immediate plans” according to a show source.
Emily is regularly referenced on screen, most recently during an episode in 2019, with Eileen, who joined Weatherfield in January 1961, filming cameos on the soap in 2016, and again in 2019.
After she decided to take a break, writers explained her absence with a storyline that saw her go to South America to spend time with hippy nephew Spider.