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Ben Thompson 'sad over Corrie shake-up'

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Ryan Connor from Coronation Street

© ITV

Coronation Street's Ben Thompson has revealed plans to launch a music career as his role on the show is reduced.

In August, it was confirmed that Thompson's Ryan Connor had not been axed, but would only appear occasionally in the ITV soap after going to university in Glasgow.

The actor told The Bolton News that he was "sad" to have had his role reduced by producer Phil Collinson, but said that he planned to focus on launching his singing career.

"It wasn’t my choice to leave Coronation Street," he said. "But a new producer came in and wanted to shake things up.

"I am one of the characters that sadly wasn't part of the plan. Ryan is being sent off to university and can come back, but I don’t know if that will happen for the foreseeable future."

He continued: "I am sad, because it has been the biggest part of my life for the past four years. It has given me the freedom to work on my music, though. Writing music is something I have always done, but I've never been able to focus on it before because I had to do Coronation Street.

"It's nice to be able to do something completely different to acting."

However, Thompson said that he was grateful for the opportunities being in the soap had presented.

"Coronation Street has been a fantastic springboard for me - it's a national institution. People hear about my gigs and want to see Ryan from Coronation Street play songs," he said."

"It's nice that people support me because I've been on Coronation Street, but I want to impress people with my music."

He admitted that he is aware of the stigma attached to soap actors who pursue music careers.

"I know it's hard to be credible when you come out of a soap and people might think I'm singing just because I've been on television," he said. "I'm not going to be on TV with make-up on and my top off, though.

"I want to do this because I've written these songs and I want to play them for people."

Thompson also confirmed that he will return to Corrie to film scenes for Christmas episodes later this month.

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