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Peter Baldwin as Derek in 1995.
|Coronation Street character|
|Portrayed by||Peter Baldwin|
|Duration||1976–79, 1982, 1984–97|
|First appearance||23 February 1976|
|Last appearance||7 April 1997|
|Created by||Bill Podmore|
Derek Wilton was axed by producer Brian Park in a high profile cull in 1997. His axing was said to have caused his co-worker Thelma Barlow (who played his on-screen wife Mavis) to quit her role in the show. While appearing on ITVs This Morning in October 2010, Barlow denied it was the reason she left the show, stating she had decided to quit before Baldwin was axed.
Derek was often dominated by women; he remained a bachelor until after his mother's death in 1981 as he always bowed to her wishes. He first met Mavis Riley in 1976 but remained non-committal until 1984 when they agreed to marry. On their wedding day, the indecisive couple jilted each other.
Forever letting Mavis down, Derek was usually too proud to admit he was at fault but still went to her with his problems. His biggest mistake was marrying his boss's daughter, Angela Hawthorne in 1985, even though it was Mavis he really wanted. After divorcing Angela, Derek finally married Mavis in 1988 and in 1990 they moved into 4 Coronation Street.
On the career front, Derek never had much luck; he usually worked as a salesman but his jobs never tended to last long, and in desperation for employment he usually had to turn to people who had caused problems in his and Mavis's lives, including Angela and Mavis's ex-partner Victor Pendlebury. Eccentric and pompous, Derek was the perfect match for dithering Mavis as they were very much alike: their old-fashioned mannerisms and tendency to over-dramatize everything sometimes made them the butt of the neighbours' jokes, especially their immediate neighbour, Des Barnes.
Derek died from a heart attack during a road rage incident on Mavis's birthday in 1997.
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