Coronation Street's Simon returns to alcohol ahead of show exit

Coronation Street spoilers follow.

Coronation Street's Simon Barlow starts drinking again next week as Leanne Battersby becomes further embroiled in Rowan Cunliffe's dangerous cult.

Viewers know that Simon's drinking worsened in recent months, culminating in a drink-driving incident earlier this year that put Sam Blakeman's life at risk.

In the aftermath, Simon confessed to the crime and started attending self-help classes to get his addiction under control – unaware that the classes were actually organised by the mysterious group The Altovalent Institute.

Next week, Toyah Habeeb grows further concerned about The Institute's influence on Leanne and starts to do some digging. She discovers a forum with comments from ex-members and tells Leanne that the group isn't to be trusted.

leanne battersby, rowan, coronation street

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However, Leanne brushes off Toyah's concerns and is flattered when Rowan reveals that he's been promoted and offers Leanne a tour of The Altovalent Institute.

Meanwhile, Simon has been trying to get his life back on track after his court hearing and has been exploring the idea of creating a local food delivery app. Leanne tells Simon about a man from the group, Jared, who is more than happy to help Simon set up his app.

Later, Simon reveals that Jared has agreed to meet him and help but that he'll need to borrow some money. Toyah remains sceptical and believes it could be a scam, but Leanne is delighted to see Simon receiving help from the group.

As Toyah continues to dig up dirt on Rowan, Leanne is delighted to be offered a place on a retreat. Leanne prepares to leave and ignores Toyah's request to reconsider.

bobby, simon barlow, coronation street

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However, Simon is stung when he realises that Leanne left without saying goodbye and begins spiralling. He decides to skip work and hits the bottle. After throwing up in Tim's cab, Simon realises he can't afford to pay and does a runner. Will Nick and Toyah be able to find him?

Simon's latest actions come as star Alex Bain prepares to move on from the show after 16 years on the cobbles.

The star's exit was reported late last year, with Alex leaving to pursue new opportunities, and an insider claimed that the character would exit with an “explosive” storyline.

Last month, Alex revealed he had finished filming with the soap by posting an update on his Instagram saying: "That's a wrap for Simon Barlow everyone! Thank you to all at Coronation Street for the best 15 years of my life!"

Coronation Street airs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.

Read more Coronation Street spoilers on our dedicated homepage

Alcohol Change UK offers information, advice and support with their questions about drinking and the problems that can sometimes be caused by alcohol. For more information, visit Alcohol Change UK's website. Drinkline also offers free, confidential advice to anyone who is concerned about their own or someone else's drinking on 0300 123 1110 (weekdays 9am–8pm, weekends 11am–4pm).

Readers can also contact Drinkaware.

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