Created 13th October 2004
Updated 12th August 2005

Blanche Linfield/Hunt


Played by & IMDB entry for Maggie Jones

Appeared: 1974 - 1976, 1977; 1978; ; 1981; 1996; 3 December 1997; 1998-1999; Main character since 8 August 1999 -

(Previously played by Patricia Cutts 1974)

Born: 22nd January 1936

Married: Donald Hunt

Children: Deirdre Hunt/Barlow/Rachid

Granddaughter: Tracy Barlow

Great-Granddaughter Amy Barlow

The Following Profile was submitted by Patricia Dempsey and is ©2004 to Patricia Dempsey & emmerdale.org

Blanche Linfield married Donald Hunt and had one child, Deirdre. Frank was run over by a car and died in 1960/63 and Blanche was left to raise to raise their young child alone. She made her first appearance in 1974 when she met Deirdre's boyfriend, Billy Walker. Blanche, then working as a corset-fitter, took a fancy to him herself. She was delighted when Billy and Deirdre announced their forthcoming wedding. As the preparations were underway in 1975, Blanche and her future in-law, Annie Walker, discovered they had bought the same outfit. She wasn't happy when Deirdre broke off her engagement and less happy the following month when Deirdre announced she was marrying Ray Langton. They moved in with Blanche, her taking the downstairs and they the upstairs. Blanche had sold her business and ran the corner shop on behalf of Gorden Clegg. Ray and Deirdre moved in with her living on the first floor until she moved away with bookie Dave Smith to run his new country club in January 1976. She reappeared in January 1977 after Deirdre had given birth to Tracy with vet, Steve Bassett in tow as her fiancé. She was furious with Ray in 1978 when she discovered about his affair and Deirdre told her she and the baby were moving to Holland with him. She slapped him and called him selfish.

After Blanche's appearance at Ken and Deirdre's wedding in 1981, she wasn't seen permanantly again until 1999 when she announced she was selling her flat and moved in with the then single Deirdre. Though her health had suffered over the years after a stroke 6 years earlier which Deirdre nursed her through.

She had a short-term job in the Kabin in 1999 after the departure of Sharon Gaskell. But Rita couldn't put up with her so sacked her after a week.

Blanche circa 2003

In February 2002 she accompanied Rita, Emily and Betty on a drive to celebrate Rita's birthday. However the pensioners were held at gunpoint by a robber who had flagged down the car. After returning, Blanche did her usual embellishing of the truth making herself out to be the hero. Romance entered her life in as well that year with funeral director Archie Shuttleworth. Seeing him with Audrey Roberts made her jealous and she refused to believe it was a platonic relationship. It was too late when she was informed Audrey was doing hair for his clients because he ended it. But while she was alone in the house, she fell down the stairs and stayed at the bottom all night. Archie broke the door down after seeing her prone through the letterbox and she was taken to hospital. She thought he wanted to resume their relationship and was heartbroken when he said things hadn't changed. She tried to put a brave face on things but broke down in front of Deirdre. The following year she met millionaire widower Wally Bannister at a tea dance. Things were going fine between them until she had to go away to Morecambe to look after her sister. She never knew he was really a simple gardener with a very much alive wife who had slept with Tracy and claimed she'd gone off him anyway.

Blanche caused more trouble during 2003 when she announced to a shocked Deirdre and Ken she had bought number 7 for Tracy. Tracy was delighted to have her own home for her but Blanche made conditions she could have it only if she didn't sell the baby to the Croppers. Deirdre was furious at her mother favouring her daughter and promptly threw her out of the house. Tracy was not amused when Blanche turned up on the doorstep. And less amused when during an argument with her grandmother, she was informed the house really belonged to Blanche.

2004 and Blanche was doing her usual troublemaking. Not only had she let her home for 6 months to new arrival Danny Baldwin, since Tracy was visiting Peter in Portsmouth with the baby and phoned to say she may not be coming back, resulting in her moving back in with Ken and Deirdre. But also arranging the protests with Emily Bishop against the council tax money being used to pay for Alf's memorial. By October, she again spoke her mind over Tracy's fraud. Ken finally snapped and told her a few home truths. She was very upset by it but did apologise. Ken and Deirdre were stunned and Deirdre asked if her other half wanted a brandy.

More shenanigans in the Barlows when she invited her friend Wanda to stay since her house was unfit to live in. Wanda had eyes for Ken and made no bones about the fact, so they were relieved when she went home.

Blanche was her usual, tactless self at the Rovers New Year party when she, along with Betty, Vera, Emily and Rita, bad-mouthed the Websters, especially Sally and Rosie.

2005 and Blanche joined the book club Norris set up. She also had a new boozy friend, Lena, to annoy her daughter and former son-in-law. Lena too had eyes for Ken and no one was amused when Blanche invited Norris, Rita, Emily and Lena to Amy's first birthday party where they all sang songs and she had to try and stop Lena causing havoc in the bedroom. The book club went well although at one point as they were discussing, Hard Grinding, she became confused as none of what they said appeared in the one she'd been reading which turned out to be, Grinding Hard and much racier that the selected choice.

She managed to make it to Ken and Deirdre's remarriage even though she hadn't been feeling well and felt even more sick when it was called off as they heard Tracy had taken Amy to hospital and they came face to face with her former son-in-law, Ray Langton. He never seemed to take the hint he wasn't wanted, even when she went round to Emily's to tell him to go and they argued, which continued on the street where Tracy joined in. Deirdre spoke openly to her about how she and Ray would probably still be together now as they wanted the same things and more kids, unlike Ken. Blanche said there'd be more like Tracy would would have driven her into an early grave. She felt for Ken as he later opened his heart about the errant Langton, wondering why women prefer his type with their excitement but, with Blanche's encouragement, decided to fight for his family. At the wedding reception, she sat opposite Ray in the booth and actually praised him, only to discover he was dead. She helped Tracy through the funeral and was less than pleased to discover she'd spent the night with Steve McDonald but, despite her warnings, Tracy was convinced they had a future.

Blanche was the first to realise Ray was dead

At the end of May, Blanche went speed dating at the Weatherfield Arms with Rita, Norris and her friend Lena. She argued with Lena over one man who, unbeknownst to her, Norris had told she was a Black Widow with several husbands in the cemetary. She took delight in informing a lady Norris had become enchanted with that he wasn't an author at all. Things seemed to be going well. She eventually agreed to let Steve and Tracy rent number 7 in mid-June, since Tracy had told everyone in the family they would be living together when, in fact, Steve had said no such thing. But then at line dancing with Lena, she had a bad fall and was taken to A&E. She was forced to confess that a few years ago she had been diagnosed with osteoarthritis but the doctor didn't think it was bad enough for a hip replacement. After going home, she announced she was going to sell the house to go private for the operation much to the dismay of Tracy in particular. With her friend Lena's help, she booked herself an operation in Gdansk, Poland and only admitted to Deirdre she'd also booked her flight and a room at a cheap hotel around the corner after Deirdre suggested she went along. Meanwhile she was getting impatient about the house sale and wasn't amused when Steve told her he couldn't afford it. When she pointed out she'd taken out a loan to pay for her operation the following week, Steve gave her the number of the man who bought Eileen's from him and asked her not to tell Tracy yet. She reluctantly agreed. On the day of Steve becoming Amy's legal father on her birth certificate, Blanche told Danny in the pub about him having a new landlord, unaware Tracy had overheard. She explained she needed a quick sale and she should talk to Steve about it. Before leaving for Poland, she admitted to Ken and Deirdre she was scared but they reassured her and she left for her operation.

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