Co-op on the cobbles

I’m excited to reveal that Co-op Food is part of the biggest ever product placement venture that Coronation Street has ever undertaken.

This world famous street houses the world’s longest running TV soap opera. With over 9,300 episodes, it first aired on 9 December 1960, and it has an amazing average 8 million viewers.

Some of you who are fans will have noticed Co-op popping up in episodes since November, with famous residents unpacking delicious food from their blue Co-op bags, and there’s more to come.

The famous Rovers Return has always been part of the fabric of the street, and with the exciting expansion of the Coronation Street set, a Weatherfield Co-op Food store will soon be seen on our screens. Coronation Street characters have often headed off to this new area of the set to Weatherfield’s Co-op, but the cameras never followed them. But that’s all set to change.

Weatherfield’s Co-op is having a refit and will start to appear in episodes from spring 2018. You’ll see our store, our bags, and non-speaking artists walking around in Co-op uniform going about their daily business.

Co-op on the cobbles

In an ITV first, viewers will see Co-op and Costa storefronts as part of a new extended Weatherfield set.

So why are we doing this?

We believe the Co-op and Coronation Street have a lot in common. We’re both iconic British brands, who’ve played a massive part in British history, and we both have our roots in the North of England. We both have community spirit embedded in everything we do, so we think it’s only right that we should serve one of the most famous communities in the UK.

It really is a fantastic opportunity to reach an audience of millions in new and different ways. It’ll raise the profile of our brand and of Co-op Membership.

What’s next?

We’re working on a host of exciting things with Coronation Street for our Food partnership and I can’t wait to share the details with you soon. We’re really keen to get our colleagues involved too. Look out for brilliant competitions with money can’t buy prizes. Watch this space!

Jo Whitfield
Co-op Food CEO


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Join the conversation! 30 Comments

  1. I once was trapped in a lift with ‘Billy Walker’ when it broke down in

    Manchester’s House of Fraser Store on Deansgate!

  2. I have refereed the Coronation Street football team on two separate occasions, once in Manchester and once in Liverpool, both for charitable events. 🙂

  3. Surely time to bring back Reg Holdsworth and Curly Watts to run it??

  4. Just when I thought we had got rid of delivery areas with cobbles – Oh the joy of pushing ambient.

    I’ll drive the delivery vehicle!

  5. Any thoughts on having a delivery vehicle driving down the cobbles or a delivery in progress ? We do a lot of Coop corporate events from the depot.

    • That would be great wouldn’t it?! We’ll keep you posted on any further exciting announcements.

  6. I thought we were #onecoop now?

    Surely that first line should read “I’m excited to reveal that Co-op is part of the biggest ever product placement venture that Coronation Street has ever undertaken.” ?

    And why restrict it to Food anyway – people die in Coronation Street all the time. Maybe we can bung the scriptwriters some money for a suitable storyline (if we haven’t already that is) !

    • We’re far from the only co-op. Central, Midcounties,, Southern, Colchester, East of England and Scotmid spring to mind and there are others dotted around

    • I thought there had already been a Co-op funeral on Coronation Street (or one of the other soaps)?

    • Very good point. If we had a like button, I would like this.

    • Absolutely, we are one Co-op now.

      In this case though, to the outside world we’re currently different business units. For now, only our Food business is working in partnership with ITV on this particular product placement deal.

      We can’t, and wouldn’t want to, influence what happens in the storylines – we’ll leave that to the experts!”

  7. I have some serious concerns about this !! Roy’s Rolls has been a cornerstone of that little area for years, I really hope we don’t barge in and have such an impact that we affect Roy’s livelihood !!

    And what about poor Norris !! Surely with all his experience of working in the corner shop he should be parachuted in at Store Supervisor level ??

    And surely Kirkules is a shoe in for a role in store !!??

    Oh the drama !! 😉

    • Don’t worry Paul! We look forward to being seen alongside Dev’s corner shop, the Kabin, Roy’s Rolls and Freshco.

  8. Good idea, is there not a charge associated with product placement?

    I am sure it is less than the cost of frontline advertising.

  9. im confused,i thought brands wernt allowed to be advertised on tv shows?
    can anyone answer this?

    • Product placement was legalised in the UK some years ago now. I recall obvious placements including Samsung tablets on X factor a few years ago. PG Tips mugs on countdown (I think). The rules mean the product can’t have an impact on the storyline or the progress of the show. Unlike in America where they’ll interrupt the show for the actor to turn to camera and say “I just love the taste of this (*insert name of random food product*) with my dinner” etc. That’s not allowed here. Because its horrid. I can picture it now. Gail Platt going to the shop, turns to camera and says “I love shopping at my local Co-op because the staff are so friendly and the prices so good!” before heading on her way. #cheesy

  10. Freshcos, The Cabin and Dev Alahan aren’t too happy!

  11. A great way of getting the Co-op into millions of homes every week but nothing is new in this world.
    A few years ago the Group was seriously considering sponsoring the corner shop but nothing came of it!

  12. I quote my facebook post from last night (following watching an episode):

    “Loads of product placement on Coronation street. First Visa Contactless, Co-op bags, now Costa cups. Perhaps Dev’s shop should be stocked with Co-op products and a Costa express machine, imagine how much they’d pay for that! I don’t know how I think em up!”

    Then the VERY NEXT DAY I read this?!?!

    It does bring into question the matter of money though – how much are we paying for this?!

  13. Can I please be the Member Pioneer for the cobbles coop!! They would all definatly have Memberships…. 5% for them and a Massive 1% for our community causes ….. amazing what this little blue card is doing in communities….#Thecoopway

  14. We could start stocking (Coronation Street) Chicken ; Co-op (Fizz) Prosecco ; (Dev)ils on Horseback or (Red Rec) wine; Betty Turnip !!

  15. Great news! I have seen the bags popping up of late and get excited every time! Looking forward to seeing the store 🙂

  16. can we be extra’s in the soap, we could play ourselves!!

    • That’d be amazing! But unfortunately not. Coronation Street only employ background artists who have Agency representation. Maybe you can look into it this way

  17. Brilliant!!!! A really good idea, thank you to whoever came up with this, a Manchester based soap, couldn’t be better. Years and years ago I won a competition to visit the set in Manchester when it was Granada Studios, I met all the actors including Ena Sharples, they were so lovely, never forgotten it! Who is Ena Sharples I hear you youngsters ask? [ your granny will know her, she was always sat in the Snug of the pub drinking milk stout]

  18. This is brilliant! Great idea.

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