Coronation Street’s Toyah Battersby has been desperate for a baby and even turned to IVF treatment to fulfil her wish of becoming a mum.
But could Peter Barlow become the father of the child she do desperately wants? Here Georgia Taylor, who plays Toyah, says she thinks he could be perfect father material!
Did Toyah expect Peter would want to have kids with her?
I don’t know, it’s interesting because she hasn’t actually been open and candid with him up until this point so, that kind of makes me question whether maybe deep down on some level, she knew that he wasn’t going to be up for this. Until you fall in love with someone, you’re not thinking that far ahead. She does talk a lot about how her time with Peter when she was having an affair when she was still married, was just about escaping all that and escaping all the sort of hardship of the IVF and everything. So maybe at that point she wasn’t really thinking that far ahead. It’s only now that they are sort of properly together and in love and committed, that obviously it’s an issue that has to come to the fore, because it’s something that she really wants. With everything that’s going on with her husband, she talks about being with Peter as a sort of form of escapism really, so it’s only now that, as I say they are properly together, that she wants it to happen and it’s going to have to happen with you.
Is he the right man to have kids with her?
We’ve seen him be both ends of the spectrum, so we’ve seen him being an awful dad, but I think a lot of that is to do with his drinking and I think because he’s sober at the moment, that’s when you see what a lovely dad he can be. We’ve had scenes with him and Alex who plays Simon, and they interact with each other really well and he gets the best out of him. Chris is very funny and charming, so I think all of these things he brings to Peter as well. When you see them together, you think, you could be a really sort of great dad and a fun dad. However, we know with Peter Barlow that he always has the potential to go off the rails, so on paper, he’s not like the perfect candidate for the perfect dad but, I don’t know if he and Toyah would last, I don’t know if she could be with him if he was still drinking and womanising.
How does she feel when she finds out he doesn’t want kids?
Devastated because all of a sudden she now has the choice of does she stay with the man that she loves and give up her dream of having children which is all she’s ever wanted, or she has to give him up and so it’s kind of catch 22 really, how do you choose. She doesn’t want to have to make that choice, but if she has to then she would probably let him go, because that’s how great her need to be a mother is.
Why hasn’t she told him what she’s been through with IVF before now?
When you first start seeing someone and especially cause she was having an affair with him, it was sort of just about escaping and the excitement of it and just getting away from what she thought was the drudgery of her real life. Which was arguing with her husband and running out of money and the stress of the IVF and so, she spent the time with Peter. It was about forgetting all of that so you can understand why she wouldn’t necessarily talk about that to start with. I don’t know, when’s a good time, it’s similar to why she doesn’t tell Leanne. I think unfortunately she’s at a point now where it’s gone on so long, there’s no good way out of this, she’s left it too long and I think that’s what’s happened with Peter and the baby thing. In trying to keep things nice and smooth and comfortable for everyone, when she probably should just have been more open with both of them about the different things, she’s found herself in a bit of a pickle really.
What does she make of Toby’s suggestion they try again?
Toby does come back and says he wants to do another cycle of IVF. Around the same time, Peter is talking about how his fathering days are over and he’s so glad he doesn’t have to go through that again and Toby turns up and he’s offering her everything, so then she’s in a huge dilemma because you know Toby is offering everything she wants, Peter isn’t, but Peter is the one she really loves.
Does she still have feelings for Toby?
In some way she’s clearly moved on and she’s not sort of in love with him in the way that she was years ago, but they have been through a lot together and they’ve got all that history. You have to believe although their relationship is in tatters now, I have to believe that at some point they were happy. You know, otherwise they wouldn’t have got married in the first place so I suppose when any relationship is falling apart, there can always be a sort of tendency to go backwards and be nostalgic and remember when it was good, so it’s just a big dilemma really.
Why hasn’t Toyah told Leanne about her fertility problems before now?
You would think of all the people you would talk to about that, would be your sister and so it makes Leanne feel a bit humiliated, and also doubtful about how strong their relationship as sisters really is. She sort of feels like, well maybe we weren’t as close as I thought we were because you haven’t shared this with me.
What does Leanne make of her admission? Does Toyah feel better for it?
Her main issue would be that we didn’t tell her, that’s the biggest thing, she holds no feelings for Peter so there’s no problem about her being jealous. If anything, she would be concerned about Toyah because she would think that Peter isn’t good enough for Toyah, she’d think Peter isn’t trust worthy, and I don’t want my sister getting mixed up with someone, especially my ex husband who I don’t trust. It’s just about that betrayal and just feeling humiliated and also we’re at a stage where people will find out before Leanne does, so obviously Simon found out and Eva found out so, you would feel really humiliated, you’d think, well did everybody know?
How would she feel if she knew Peter knows about her IVF?
Because he has expressed the opinion that he’s sort of glad that his days of being a dad to a young child are over and obviously Simon is growing up, I think Toyah might be wary cause she might think oh gosh this might sound like something he might not want.
How confident is she in their relationship?
Pretty confident because I think they genuinely love each other and I do think she believes that he’s turned over a new leaf and he’s been sober for over 2 years now. The viewers and the people on the street know how much of a womaniser Peter has been over the years, and obviously Toyah knows a bit of that through Leanne but she doesn’t know all of it. She doesn’t know the extent,I was talking to Chris and I asked who’s Peter been with and honest to god, he listed that many female characters in the street, that there was barely anybody left, but Toyah doesn’t necessarily know that. She does like to see the best in people, and she likes to see the best in him, so she’s quite optimistic cause she wants it to work, cause she really loves him and obviously she sacrificed a lot. She gave up her marriage for him, so you don’t want to throw that away for something you’re not quite sure about, you’ve got to feel like there’s a good chance of this working.
How would you feel about having to film fall-out scenes with Jane?
I love working with Jane so much cause we’re so close in real life, she’s one of my best friends, I think you kind of feel it more. Obviously we’re actors and you act, but you know if you have a genuine relationship with someone and then they, for example she might be upset, she might be furious, and you feel those things more. You know even though it’s the character, it’s still my good friend Jane that might be upset or screaming at me, so hopefully it makes it feel more true on screen, because we’re so close in real life.
What advice would you give Toyah at this point?
I don’t think I could advise her on which way to go, I think that she’s stuck between a rock and a hard place, and I totally sort of feel sympathy for her. It’s a shame that she doesn’t really have anybody, well she does talk to Leanne and Eva but it’s just that Leanne doesn’t know that’s she’s talking about Peter, she thinks she’s talking about Fred. My advice would be, talk to your sister, talk to your girlfriends, that’s who you turn to when you’re in a dilemma like that. You need to talk it through really and work out what’s the best way and don’t make any rash decisions, which is what she kind of does, but I would say don’t do that.
Should she and Peter stick together?
I would like to think so, cause I like working with Chris as well, so from a very selfish point of view, we really enjoy working together, so I hope they do stay together, cause I think they are a sort of interesting mixture. She’s very different from Carla, so it’s kind of interesting for him to have gone for someone like her and think there’s lots more to explore as well.
Would she give him up for Leanne’s sake?
I don’t know because I suppose you could argue at the moment, Leanne has got Nick and she’s going to have a baby. She’s got her own perfect nuclear family, and then if Toyah was to give up Peter, Toyah’s got no one, so that would be such a massive sacrifice, I think she would hope that in time, they would find a way for her and Leanne to sort of make amends.