1. Ena Sharples
And at number one is the inspiration for the likes of Blanche Hunt, Ivy Tilsley and Maud Grimes – Mrs Ena Sharples! On our screens for 20 years, Ena was the original battleaxe and ruled the roost on
Coronation Street. Known for her hairnet and her Christian morals, Ena had her fair share of disagreements – with Elsie Tanner, Annie Walker and Leonard Swindley. During her tenure, she worked as a caretaker, first at the Mission Hall and then at the Community Centre. If she wasn’t working, she would be found gossiping with pals Minnie Caldwell and Martha Longhurst in the Rovers snug. She was also a dab hand on the piano, and led a sing-along in the Rovers. She also played the organ in many weddings in the early years. Although they constantly clashed, Ena did comfort Elsie Tanner when she was down in the dumps and even saved her from committing suicide. By the 1970s, she had mellowed and her appearances were more recurring with Violet Carson (who played Ena) having health problems. She became more of a caring grandmother figure by the end of her tenure, babysitting for the Langtons and such.