Michelle Collins quit Coronation Street as it was making her ‘like a zombie’

EastEnders’ Michelle Collins has claimed she bid fairwell to her role on Coronation Street because it was making her “like a zombie”.

The seasoned actress has been a familiar face on British television screens for decades, portraying Rovers Return landlady Stella Price on Corrie for three years.

However, the relentless filming schedules and the grueling demands of her role left her feeling “depleted,” said the 51-year-old star.

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In an interview with The Sun, Collins explained: "I threw myself wholeheartedly into Corrie but I ended up spreading myself far too thinly.

“The tiredness is the worst, it can make you a zombie.

“Work is fantastic, but it's not the be-all and end-all. You have to have some quality of life as well. If you don't have a work-life balance, it can drive you a bit crazy."

The veteran actress, who is also a mother to an 18-year-old daughter, Maia, shared that the taxing shooting schedules and the challenging commute from her London home to the Manchester studios, spanning a distance of 250 miles, had taken a toll on her overall health and vitality.

The strain became increasingly evident as Collins found herself struggling to maintain her energy and focus.

Collins detailed the grueling routine claiming that bouts of exhaustion left her feeling lethargic and unable to concentrate.

She explained: “Once I made four journeys between London and Manchester in one day. Another time I crashed into a parked car after a long journey. I knew the travel wouldn't be easy, but I didn't realise how hard it would be.”

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She went on to detail that she was in “almost every scene” and while she has some “fantastic stories” and was grateful for the role as an actress, she felt like she was “on a loop.”

The demanding lifestyle, coupled with her responsibilities as a single mother, became overwhelming, prompting her to make the tough decision to leave the show.

Known for her portrayal of Cindy Beale on EastEnders for a decade, Collins drew a comparison between the two experiences, stating: "Being in soap is tough, it's so much tougher than it was the first time round and doing five episodes a week, it really is hard, particularly if you're a single mum and you're coming backwards and forwards to London."

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Fans will see Michelle finally return to Albert Square as Cindy Beale tonight (August 28) after a 25-year absence.

Collins, whose career spans various soap operas and theater productions, is also currently working on her autobiography.

The upcoming book promises to delve into her personal battles, including her struggles with eating disorders, her decision to walk out on her wedding, and her legal fight for custody of her daughter.

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