Roache, who plays Ken Barlow in the soap, told What's On TV that Kirkbride's Deirdre was his favourite of Ken's many female companions throughout his 50 years on the Street.
"Anne is such a lovely person," he said. "We get on well, she's a joy to work with and I love her dearly. So does Ken, which is why he always comes back to her.
"We have been together on screen for pretty much 30 years now and so much of what we do on camera is instinctive. We really are like an old married couple who have had their ups and downs, lived through them and come out the other side.”
He admitted that Ken is "useless" with women and is not the "great Lothario" people believe he is.
The 78-year-old recently revealed that his sons could make an on-screen comeback following their appearances earlier this year.
> Roache: 'Live Corrie nerves are terrible'