11:59 06 January 2010
Spoiler alert! Coronation Street's murderous mother Tracy Barlow (Kate Ford) will make a shock return to Weatherfield after her stint in jail ends prematurely.
The 32-year-old actress is reprising her role in the spring - three years after she was last on the ITV soap.
When Barlow was sentenced to life for killing boyfriend Charlie Stubbs (Bill Ward), 12 million fans tuned in and now soap bosses think it's time for her return.
A show source said: "Tracy may still be locked up, but she still has the ability to cause some major havoc.
"And it won't just be the Barlows who will feel her wrath, plenty of others - including one particular much-loved character - will become embroiled.
"We can't wait to have her back on screen playing one of Corrie's most controversial characters."
It has been speculated that her return to the cobbles will impact on her ex Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) and his new wife Becky (Katherine Kelly).
Ford has reportedly signed on for an initial two-month storyline and appear later in the year on a more permanent basis, as the hit soap gears up to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
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