Video: A 1938 performance from Coronation Street’s Betty Driver, who died today aged 91

Coronation Street's longest serving barmaid Betty Driver has died today at the age of 91.

Betty had played the role of Rovers Return barmaid Betty Williams (Turpin) in the soap for 42 years, and was best known for her iconic dish 'Betty's hot-pot' which was served at lunch-time in the Rovers.

But before Corrie Betty, had a successful singing and performing career spanning more than 40 years.

Born in Leicester on March 20, 1920, Betty was the older of two daughters and she joined the Terence Byron Repertory Company at the age of nine. At 10-years-old Betty turned professional, starring in a touring production of Mixed Bathing, then at 14-years-old she landed her first film role.

Also at a young age Betty moved into radio where she sang with bandleader Harry Hall. She was spotted performing by Archie Pitt and his brother Bert Aza, who signed her up and put her in a leading role in Mr Tower of London.

Film director Basil Dean then cast her in the 1938 film Penny Paradise. This was followed by Let's Be Famous and Facing The Music.

During the second world war she entertained the troops with the ENSA organisation and teamed up with again with Mr Hall, singing in his radio show Henry Hall's Guest Night on and off for seven years. She also had her own show A Date With Betty.

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In the 1930's and 40's, Betty became a major recording artist, whose songs included The Sailor With The Navy Blue Eyes, Macnamara's Band, Pick The Petals Of A Daisy, Jubilee Baby and September In The Rain.

It was in 1964 she auditioned at Granada Television for the role of Hilda Ogden in Coronation Street but she was unsuccessful.

In 1966 she was given the role of canteen manageress in the first of two Coronation Street spin-off series Pardon The Expression but soon retired.

Then in 1969 Coronation Street producer Harry Kershaw asked if she would be interested in appearing in Coronation Street and she made her debut on June 2, 1969 as barmaid Betty Turpin.

Although she was only employed on a three-month contract, she stayed for 42 years and in the New Year's Honours List for 2000, Betty was awarded an MBE.

An ITV spokesman said she 'died peacefully in hospital' in the early hours of this morning.

The actress had been in hospital for six weeks and had also been unwell earlier in the year. She was treated for a chest infection in 2010.