Ben Price as Nick Tilsley (2014)
|Coronation Street character|
|Portrayed by||Warren Jackson (1981–96)
Adam Rickitt (1997–2004)
Ben Price (2009–)
|Duration||1981–99, 2002–04, 2009–|
|First appearance||Episode 2062
5 January 1981
|Introduced by||Bill Podmore (1981)
Brian Park (1997)
Kieran Roberts (2002)
Kim Crowther (2009)
|Book appearances||Coronation Street:
The Complete Saga
Adam Rickitt as Nick Tilsley (2004)
Nicholas Paul "Nick" Tilsley (formerly Platt) is a fictional character in the British soap opera Coronation Street. He was born off screen during an episode broadcast on 31 December 1980, but made his first appearance on 5 January 1981. He was played by Warren Jackson from 1981 until 6 September 1996. Adam Rickett took over the role on 15 October 1997 until 21 April 1999 but returned for three separate stints between 2002 and 2004 and made his final appearance as Nick on 11 July 2004. Ben Price took over the role on 21 December 2009.
Nick is the first-born child of Brian (Christopher Quinten) and Gail Tilsley (Helen Worth). He is the older brother of Sarah Platt (Leah King, Lynsay King, Tina O'Brien) and uncle to her daughter Bethany (Mia Cookson, Amy and Emily Walton, Lucy Fallon) and the older half-brother of David Platt (Thomas Ormson, Jack P. Shepherd) and uncle to his daughter Lily Platt, and grandson to Audrey Roberts (Sue Nicholls).
Nick's storylines have included his adolescent problems and his role in the fraught relationship between his parents, his teenage marriage to Leanne Battersby (Jane Danson) and their divorce, and his engagement to Maria Connor (Samia Smith). Since his return in 2009 his storylines have featured him remarrying and once again divorcing Leanne, his one-night stand with David's wife Kylie Platt (Paula Lane), suffering brain damage after being involved in car accident which was caused by David, and his business partnership with and later one-day marriage to Carla Connor (Alison King).
Nicky was born on New Year's Eve 1980. After his father's murder in 1989, Nicky began misbehaving but Martin Platt (Sean Wilson) proved a calming influence. In 1991, Martin – now married to Gail – adopted Nick and changed his name. Nick's paternal grandmother, Ivy, was furious and changed her will, leaving her house to Nicky. She persuaded him to become an altar-boy at St. Luke's in exchange for a place on the football team. Ivy also reported Gail to Social Services as an unfit mother. Nicky's relationship with his grandmother caused friction with Martin. Nicky began to rebel, taking up smoking and demanding to be called "Nick". When Ivy died in 1995, her will stipulated that Nick must change his name back to Tilsley to inherit her house, which shocked Gail and Martin. He did so and arguments sprang up about the house, then occupied by Ivy's widower, Don. Don eventually bought the house from Nick for £12,000.
In July 1996, Nicky stayed at home while the rest of the family went on holiday but, tired of his grandmother Audrey's (Sue Nicholls) fussing, he ran away and was missing for weeks. On his return, he claimed to have been living rough in London and working in a cafe. Nicky's stories cause Jamie Armstrong (Joseph Gilgun) to want to run away to London; when confronted by Jamie's mother, Tricia (Tracy Brabin), Nicky admits he only lasted two hours in London and spent the rest of his time in Torquay. Later in the year, Gail allowed Nicky to go and live with his uncle, Stephen Reid (Todd Boyce), in Canada, in the hope that it would improve his behaviour and his education.
Nicky, now called Nick, returned in 1997 to study PE at Tech. Gail did not approve of his relationship with Leanne Battersby (Jane Danson) but the young couple eloped and, wanting to be independent, rented a room from Ashley Peacock (Steven Arnold) and live together. While Nick was at college, his class was visited by a convicted murderer, Darren Whateley (Andy Robb), during a criminology lesson. When Darren described the details of the crime he had been imprisoned for, Nick realised that Darren had killed his father. Wanting revenge, he wrote to Darren under Leanne's name, asking to meet. Darren agreed, and, when released on parole, he visited Leanne, who was frightened and furious with Nick for putting her in danger. When Nick told Darren who he was, Darren threatened him. Nick reported him to the police and he was arrested and returned to prison for violating his parole conditions. Short of money, Nick started modelling for art teacher, Miranda Peters (Francesca Ryan). Leanne suspected him of adultery and confronted him as he posed for Miranda. Leanne refused to attend his eighteenth birthday party and Nick was shocked to learn that she was pregnant. Miranda suggested Leanne have an abortion and Nick demanded she do so. Leanne reluctantly agreed and was upset to learn that he was telling people that she miscarried. Nick returned to Canada alone after Leanne told him that she no longer loved him.
Nick reappeared for his mother's wedding to Richard Hillman (Brian Capron) in July 2002, and soon began dating Maria Sutherland (Samia Smith). She agreed to join him in Canada but discovers from Audrey that he has a girlfriend. Heartbroken, she does not go. Later, having been reassured, she accompanies Nick to Canada, but soon returns, saying that Nick was not spending enough time with her.
Nick returned in September 2003 and became friends with his sister's boyfriend, Todd Grimshaw, (Bruno Langley). After a night of conversation and bonding, Todd, who is struggling with his sexuality, attempted to kiss Nick. Nick was disgusted when Sarah forgave Todd.
Nick found work at Mike Baldwin's (Johnny Briggs) factory, Underworld. When Janice Battersby (Vicky Entwistle) made fun of him, he had her fired but was forced to reinstate her when Harry Flagg, (Iain Rogerson) says that he saw what Nick did. When Janice accidentally started a fire at the factory in March 2004, Nick saved her. At the hospital where Todd worked as a porter, Todd confessed to Karl Foster (Chris Finch), that he kissed Nick. Nick was reconciled with Maria and they moved into No. 8, despite Gail's disapproval. Nick's ex-wife, Leanne, returned to Weatherfield about the same time. Angry with Maria for sleeping with Toyah's (Georgia Taylor), boyfriend, Leanne attempted to come between them. Having lured Nick to her flat, she sent Maria a photo of them together. Maria dumps Nick and he leaves Coronation Street, taking a job in Nottingham.
In 2009, Nick (now played by Ben Price) returns to Weatherfield. He becomes interested in buying a share of Underworld but Carla Connor (Alison King) declines his offer. He briefly meets Leanne, who has warned Carla not to trust Nick but Carla accepts and he becomes a partner. Nick ends his partnership with Carla a few months later after arguments and decides to open a bar-restaurant, calling it The Joinery. Leanne, although disgusted initially, agrees to become his manageress. It is clear that Nick still has strong feelings for Leanne. Although Leanne is now in a relationship with Peter Barlow (Chris Gascoyne), Nick is still in love with her and asks her to leave Peter, but despite sharing a kiss, she refuses. Eventually, Nick succeeds in seducing Leanne and they begin an affair. After Leanne ends their affair, Nick pretends to be a good friend to Peter to wind up Leanne, and threatens to reveal the infidelity to Peter. When Peter is critically injured in the gas explosion that destroyed The Joinery and the subsequent tram crash, Leanne marries Peter in hospital. Although Peter learns of the affair, he forgives Leanne. Leanne eventually ends her marriage to Peter after his affair with Carla and reconciles with Nick.
Nick and Leanne book their wedding for Christmas Day but Leanne visits Peter after Peter confesses he wants her back and Leanne's sister, Eva Price (Catherine Tyldesley), reveals all at the wedding; causing Nick to leave Leanne. That evening, Nick confides in his sister-in-law, Kylie Platt (Paula Lane), and she reveals to him that Eva has been quietly causing trouble between him and Leanne. After a heart to heart, they both give into temptation and sleep together. However, the next morning, they both agree that it was a mistake. Nick and Leanne reconcile and finally marry - just after Kylie announces she is pregnant. Nick encourages Kylie to have an abortion and she nearly goes through with it, however David discovers Kylie's pregnancy and stops her due to his desperation to start a family. Nick and Kylie agree to raise the baby up as David's as there is a chance it could be his. Nick and David are involved in a car accident after David overhears Kylie talking about her one-night stand with Nick, David then began a vendetta on Nick and Leanne, which included a poison pen letter to Leanne, stolen money, bad reviews on the internet and watering down the spirits at the Bistro. Nick and David went in the Bistro van and started arguing about the one-night stand with Kylie. David was desperate not to let Nick reveal all to Kylie and Leanne, as David feared losing Kylie if she found out what David had done to take revenge on Nick. David, in pure panic, tried to get Nick to stop the van. In the struggle, David removes Nick's seatbelt and stops the van in the middle of the road, which results in the van being hit by a lorry, knocking them both unconscious. David wakes up shortly after with minor injuries, but Nick does not. Nick is left comatosed and is taken straight down to theatre to remove a blood clot from his brain. While Nick is in his coma, Kylie gives birth to a baby girl, Lily. When Nick awakes from his coma, he suffers a panic attack when he sees David in front of him. Later, when Nick can talk more fluently, he blackmails David to get Lily a paternity test to see who the father is or he will tell the police and the Platt family how the accident was really caused. David does so, and with his friend Tina, he opens the results, revealing that David is the father of baby Lily. Nick later finds life frustrating when he can't remember simple things. He is discharged from hospital with a walking stick, and goes to live with Leanne so that she can look after him. On the day of Lily's christening everything is revealed. Leanne finds out about Nick and Kylie's one-night stand and the entire Platt clan discover that David caused the car accident. They therefore disown David, but Nick is distraught when Leanne flees Weatherfield.
The next few weeks prove extremely difficult for Nick without Leanne, but he is delighted when she returns. Nick is over the moon when Leanne tells him that she wants to give their marriage another go, but she finds life extremely difficult with his tantrums and short tempers. She is shocked when he lashes out at Simon, shouting at him over his homework. Leanne really feels the strain on their marriage. Leanne moves in with Stella Price (Michelle Collins), telling Nick that they both need a bit of space. Nick tells Leanne to go and live with Stella permanently. Nick and Leanne remain as friends and business partners. Nick begins a fling with Erica Holroyd (Claire King) an old barmaid and friend of Liz McDonald (Beverley Callard). When Nick starts to think that their fling is a relationship, Erica puts him straight. She then leaves the street to look after her mother.
When Erica returns, she tells Nick she is pregnant and he decides to be there for Erica. At a pub quiz, Erica has stomach pains and she is rushed to hospital, where Nick and Erica learn she has had a miscarriage. Nick soon starts a relationship with Carla and he helps her get through her gambling addiction. Carla later proposes to Nick and Nick accepts. The following day, Nick gathers his and Carla's families together and he gives her an engagement ring.
On the wedding day Nick finds out about Carla sleeping with Robert but he forgives her. He also finds out about Tracy blackmailing her into giving Robert the business. They still marry but he instantly regrets this. Nick then hits Robert before Carla goes on the rampage trying to hit Tracy over but accidentally hits Cathy. This causes majority of the street to hate her. Carla then leaves Weatherfield for good.
Nick learns that Leanne is pregnant and is leaving Weatherfield to join her stepsister Toyah Battersby (Georgia Taylor) in Liverpool. After a heart to heart with David, he realises that he still has feelings for Leanne. When her stepson Simon Barlow (Alex Bain) secretly phones Nick, Leanne admits that she still loves him and he manages to persuade her to stay. Leanne later admits the father of her unborn baby is Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) and Nick struggles to accept it.
The character of Nick first appeared in 1981, when he was born; portrayed by Warren Jackson. In 1996 Warren Jackson decided to leave to focus on his exams and assumed he would return to the role the following year at the end of his exams but was later axed. Speaking of his shock at his axing in 2004, Jackson revealed that he was adamant that he was returning to the show after his exams - and didn't know until he was told by the press. He told The Mirror newspaper at the time: "I remember saying goodbye to Helen Worth who played my screen mum Gail and she said 'Stay in touch and see you next year. She thought I'd be back, everyone thought I would, I never dreamed they'd get rid of me the way they did. It would have been better if they'd told me straight, because a reporter came round my door. They said I wouldn't be coming back because I wasn't sexy enough. That was a blow and a bit strange and it took me a good year to come to terms with it. Back then I was maybe a bit angry, although not now."
The producers decided to reintroduce the character of Nick a year later in 1997, with the character being recast and now played by Adam Rickitt. After three years of playing Nick, Rickitt decided to leave and left in 1999 but he returned for three stints in 2002, 2003 and 2004. He played the role of Nick for the last time in July 2004.
In early 2009 it was reported that producers were discussing bringing back Nick, but Adam Rickitt was unavailable because he was starring in Shortland Street, a soap opera in New Zealand. The producers decided to recast the character for the second time. The role went to former Footballers' Wives ' star Ben Price. Commenting on the recasting, Ben Price said "I'm not playing Adam Rickitt – I'm playing Nick and Nick's moved on [with his life]. It's been five years and you move a lot over that time. I'm sure people will think he's not like 'the other Nick', but hopefully they'll think I'm bringing something better, nicer or a bit different to the show. If I'm good enough, they'll go with it, but I can't worry about it too much." Price made his debut as Nick on 21 December 2009. In July 2010 it was reported that Rickitt turned down an offer to return. In June 2011 Price signed a new 1-year contract.
Nick Tilsley is the first-born child and only son of Brian Tilsley (Chris Quinten) and Gail Platt (Helen Worth), born on New Year's Eve 1980 and known as "Nicky". Nicky's first few years are spent in a happy home but Brian and Gail clash over Gail's desire to work and holier than thou attitude in her marriage, and Brian's immaturity. By 1986, Gail has had an affair with Tilsley family cousin, Ian Latimer, falling pregnant and splits up with Brian. The child, Sarah Louise (Lynsay King), is Brian's but he refuses to believe it and begins dating lawyer, Liz Turnbull. Nicky is a major issue in the relationship — Gail resents Liz spending time with him and Liz dumps Brian when she realises Nicky means more to Brian than her. Gail, meanwhile, is dating plumber, Jeff Singleton. When Brian sees Jeff and Nicky together, he snaps and kidnaps Nicky. The police set up a nationwide search, leading to a standoff between Gail and Brian at a motorway service station where Brian leaves with his son. Finally, Brian realises that Nicky needs his mother and they reconcile.
Nick has been described as sexy, a tease and handsome. When Nick returned in 2009 new actor Ben Price described the character as a smart businessman and always wanting control. He also stated that the character has changed a lot since 2004. "Nick's got to be a bit harder now. He's got to start running the Street and looking after his mum and start to get David into place, so I think it's good that they went with someone else."
Relationship with Leanne Battersby
Jane Danson who plays Leanne said she was "intrigued" by the decision to re-introduce Nick played by a different actor, Ben Price. Nick was married to Leanne from 1998 until 1999. Leanne and Nick split in 1999 and Nick started dating Maria Connor (Samia Smith). Speaking about Nick's re-introduction, Danson said it's interesting when an old character is re-introduced because even though it's a different actor, the previous baggage remains. Danson said that Nick has been involved with both Leanne and Maria and said obviously his family are there too so there is potential scope for that character. Danson said she does not know whether they will make anything of Leanne and him or not because she seems quite settled where she is. Danson revealed that there's always a possibility of revisiting it but Leanne would just wind up Nick.
In an interview with Soaplife, Price said that even though Nick has told Leanne that he still loves her, Leanne wants to be with Peter. Price added that there is always a chance with Leanne and Nick to get back together. Speaking to The Sun, Price commented: "Nick started with Tina, then he moved to Kelly. I'm getting through the whole of the Street, I'll be on to Rita by the end of the year!" Price added that he is expecting a storyline to develop between Nick and Leanne. He added: "You'll see him bump into Leanne soon. I'm sure stuff will come out of that – there's a story there." Asked whether if he wants to see Leanne and Nick to get back together, Price said: "There'd have to be a big journey to get to that point, but yeah, I would. But who knows? I don't know how it's going to go! But I think that would be great. But I think it could also be great if there's someone else on the Street who could come into his life. It's nice to keep spicing things up, really."
Relationship with Erica Holroyd
In September 2014, it was announced that Coronation Street producers had signed up former Emmerdale and Bad Girls star Claire King for a guest stint as Erica Holroyd. It was revealed that the newcomer's arrival leads to some happier times for Nick as Erica immediately sets her sights on him, leading to a fling between the pair. Producer Stuart Blackburn said: "Erica is a woman who lives life to the full. Nick doesn't stand a chance once she has set her sights on him, but he's not complaining." Speaking about the storyline for the first time, Price said: "He's copped a stunner - I think he is going to have the best time of his life. He has had a depressing few years so I think this is great for him, really. I think he is just enjoying the moment - she is perfect for him at the minute. She's light, funny, has been around a bit and she is an adult about things. He has still got issues so he is not looking for anything serious. I think he is still struggling with himself and how he feels, so I think he just wants a laugh and a bit of fun." Price also revealed that he doesn't think Nick is ready for a long term relationship at the moment saying; "I think he needs a bit of time [before a new relationship] especially after Leanne has come back to the Bistro," Price said. "It's great - he has seen what he has lost now but he is not the guy he was, so it will take a while to get back, I think." Praising the pairing, King revealed that Erika and Nick work well together as neither of them wants anything more serious; "Erika wants it to be a fling and I think he wants the same, but she's worried because it's New Year's Eve and she has to tell him that, not knowing how he really feels, Luckily he's thinking the same so it's quite a good little catch. She continued: "Perhaps because she's more mature and not a kid, she can handle just being friends with benefits. I think he's quite capable of doing that and enjoys having her around - she brings him out of his shell as well as his suits. It has been really good for both of them, so they possibly could just go on and there wouldn't be any jealousy and negative things you can get with someone that is a bit younger. They are both mature enough to handle it and to enjoy themselves sexually too." In April 2015, it was revealed that Nick would be given a huge surprise when Erika arrived back in Weatherfield and tells Nick that she is having his baby. Speaking of Nick's reaction tot he pregnancy, Price said; "He's supposed to meet Carla and Erica puts her hands over his eyes which makes it a bit awkward, because he thinks she's Carla. Then he thinks great, she's a mate. When he finds out she's pregnant, it's very tricky for him. Not that he'd run away because he's always wanted a kid - it's just not the best situation. It's a shock! His reaction is that he's shocked, but he's there for her. They may not be a couple but he's there for her and she just needs to tell him what she needs. He's very practical about it." Asked if Erica wants them to bring up the baby together as a couple, Price answered; "No, she doesn't want them to be a couple. She's absolutely cool about it."
In her review of soaps during the first half of 2010, Low Culture columnist Ruth Deller criticised the casting of Ben Price in the role of Nick, by stating, "we're all familiar with the way characters can suffer from SORAS (soap opera rapid ageing syndrome), but this usually happens to child or teen characters, not characters in their late twenties. However, it must have happened to Nick – how else would you explain him returning to the soap ten years older than he should be? Casting a much older actor was never going to be the easiest transition, but that aside, there doesn't seem to have been an awful lot of point to his on/off return. He wasn't the most likeable character when he was in it before and he isn't particularly interesting now."
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