Denise Osbourne

Siblings: Alison

  1. Frank
  2. Neil Mitchell

Children: Daniel Osbourne b: 4 January 1995 (f: Ken Barlow)

Played by: Denise Black
1992 - February 1996; 22 November 1996

Denise's first marriage to the rich Frank ended in divorce when she ran off with Neil Mitchell. They later married, but by late 1992 they too had separated, and Denise arrived in Coronation Street to try and build a new life. She opened a beauty salon at Nș2, living in the flat above, but still turned to builder Neil to fit out the premises.

From day one she had the fellas falling at her feet and the Christmas 1992 plot had randy Reg Holdsworth from Bettabuys, Jack Duckworth from The Rovers, and Doug Murray from the garage vying for the favours of this new sex siren in the Elsie Tanner mould. All three fought to be the first to take her out. But Denise turned the tables by inviting all of them back to her flat... at the same time.

Neil was happy to stay friends until he discovered he had a love rival in Hanif Ruparell, although by this time he was dating Angie Freeman. Denise and Hanif's affair started as a no-strings attachment for them both, a bit of fun. Nevertheless, Denise found herself falling for her rich friend. When she eventually plucked up the courage to tell Hanif how she felt, she was deeply hurt when he rejected her. The whole thing blew up into a full scale argument and ended with Denise throwing red wine into his face and storming out of a restaurant.

In the meantime, Don Brennan fell for Denise's charms after she cheered him up about his amputated leg. She showed him her hand, and said she had mananged to live with it. Don agreed to lend Denise the money she needed for her hair-styling business. Denise soon realised that Don wanted more from the relationship than friendship. She was then plauged with nuisance telephone calls which lasted for several weeks, which caused much anguish. If she was honest with herself she knew Don was the person , but was still sick to the stomach when she found out who had betrayed her - helped by Hanif, who knew 'somebody at the telephone exchange'.

Early in 1994, Denise started dating Ken Barlow, and to their mutual suprise fell pregnant. Denise then had to go through the trauma of a miscarriage, tempered somewhat by the discovery she was carrying twins and the survivor was still healthy. Ken offered to marry Denise, but with five broken marriages between them, she wanted to retain her independence, and let him know that their relationship was over.

She found life harder than expected during her prgnancy and had to bring in help at the salon in the shape of Jon Welch. She did hope that Jon would buy her out, but he couldn't raise the money.

Even when she went into labour, she refused to let Ken know, but as the pain hit her she got a message to him, and her was there for Daniel's birth, and was very supportive in the following weeks. However, Denise continued to shut Ken out, and even refused to put his name on Daniel's birth certificate - but she was only too willing to let Ken babysit.

Over the next few months, Denise and Jon became closer, but in April 1995, when he made a pass at her, he was put down in no uncertain terms, and he walked out on both her and the salon. Ken was going through turmoil, as his adopted daughter, Tracy, was in hospital after a drugs overdose, and he wanted some access to his son. After threatening legal action to ensure access to Daniel, Denise threw a wobbly and in May scuttled off to her sister's in Macclesfield. After Ken tracked her down there, she came back and seemed more willing to let Ken into her life, and in July 1995, Ken bought Nș1 and Ken, Denise and Daniel moved in - but she kept on the flat above Nș2, and even refused to let it to a desperate Bill Webster in December.

We shortly found out why. Brian Dunkley, Denise's accountant brother-in-law turned up to"do the books", which consisted of going up to the flat, tearing all their clothes off and making mad, passionate love ! They had an affair about two years before and both were keen to carry on. It didn't take long for Alison to realise Brian was having an affair, and not knowing who the 'other woman' was, turned to Denise for comfort !

In January 1996, a guilt-ridden Denise tried to stop the affair, and asked Ken if he was still prepared to marry her - he agreed. However, Brian wasn't going to give up easily, Ken found out about her affair and threw Denise out. After a few tear-stained mascara scenes, Denise decided to head south with Brian, but leave Daniel with his father, as she knew she would never be able to offer him a stable life.

Back to
Characters index

Back to
Profiles index

Back to