Two of the nation’s most-loved institutions became one on Thursday when the Queen visited the set of Coronation Street.

A host of famous faces have walked down the famous cobbles street in its 60 years on our screens, but it was only the second time the head of state has visited the most famous street in Britain.

The Queen began her tour with four actors who between them have more than 200 years service on the show.

Bill Roache, who plays Ken Barlow, Barbara Knox who is cast as Rita, Sue Nicholls who plays Audrey and Helen Worth, known to millions of soap fans as Gail, greeted the Queen with bows and curtsies outside the Rovers Return.

Her Majesty enjoyed a 40-minute tour around the set and the studios of the famous ITV set.

Winsford Guardian: The Queen wore a teal Angela Kelly outfit with matching hat. (PA)The Queen wore a teal Angela Kelly outfit with matching hat. (PA)

Wearing a teal Angela Kelly outfit with matching hat, met a host of cast and crew of the show, walking beside the cobbled street before popping into the studio where the interior of the Rovers Return is filmed.

Bill Roache told the Queen he had first seen her when she visited Jamaica in 1963, when he was serving as an officer with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers.

He added: “Thank you so much for coming today.”

Knox told the Queen when she first arrived: “Good morning, your majesty, you have brought the sunshine.

“You know you are like a ray of sunshine.

“And you’ve given us all such a lift (with) you coming, thank you very very much indeed.

“We all absolutely adore you, the world adores you.”

Winsford Guardian: Queen Elizabeth II during a visit to the set of Coronation Street at the ITV Studios. (PA)Queen Elizabeth II during a visit to the set of Coronation Street at the ITV Studios. (PA)

The Queen, who asked how they had managed to keep filming during the pandemic, replied: “It’s really marvellous you’ve been able to carry on”, and Roache replied to laughter: “Well, ma’am, you’re the one who has carried on.”

Further up the street outside number five, the Queen met the fictional “Bailey” family, and was told the set’s cobbles were the original ones taken from the old Granada street set in Manchester, before it moved three miles up the road to the new ITV Studios in 2013.

Winsford Guardian: The Queen looks at the cobbles (Scott Heppell/PA)The Queen looks at the cobbles (Scott Heppell/PA)

Kate Spencer, who plays Grace Vickers, warned the Queen: “Hard to walk on, as well, in heels.”

To laughter, the Queen, looking down at her shoes, replied: “No, I know. I’ve been told. Probably better not.”

Afterwards Roache said the royal visit as an honour and “absolutely wonderful.”

He added: “She just smiles. She listens, she always has and she loves to be made to laugh.

“I’ve been lucky to meet her quite a few times and she’s always charming and a laugh is never far away.

“She came to our other set in 1982 and Prince Charles has been here.

“To have her here, to this set, is a wonderful bit of icing on the cake.”

Winsford Guardian: Queen Elizabeth II meets actors (left to right)William Roache, Barbara Knox, Sue Nicholls and Helen Worth. (PA)Queen Elizabeth II meets actors (left to right)William Roache, Barbara Knox, Sue Nicholls and Helen Worth. (PA)

ITV chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall added: “It has been such an honour to have Her Majesty here today.

“The whole team has worked so hard through a very difficult period and it was very special for all of us to have Her Majesty walking the famous cobbles of Coronation Street.

“It will never be forgotten!”

The Queen continued her visit to the area by departing for a visit to Manchester Cathedral.