An ex-Coronation Street star has told how she quit the soap six months pregnant after having to choose between her career and her family. Tracy Brabin, now a Labour MP, revealed she lied to producers of another show to hide her pregnancy because she was so desperate for work.

Ms Brabin said she “tried everything” to juggle playing Tricia Armstrong on Corrie from 1994 to 1997 with caring for a toddler at home. When she became pregnant with her second child Corrie staff hid her bump with a handbag – until she felt she had to no choice but to leave. “When as an actor you start to show, you absolutely stop working,” she said.

She said: “After my first daughter was born, she was only a few months old, I was offered a six month contract on Coronation Street. Those six months turned into three years and I absolutely loved the job and the character I played. But I can’t deny being a mother and working on screen presented difficulties … After looking round the green room and realising other women had made these choices, I had to make a choice for myself. My career in Coronation Street and my future there, or my family.”