Coronation Street has announced the return of Kimberly Hart-Simpson as Nicky Wheatley, four years since she left the cobbles.

Nicky’s latest Weatherfield appearance will see her be part of missing Lauren Bolton’s storyline.

It comes as Daniel (Rob Mallard) goes in search of help from his old friend on the ITV soap.

Why is Kimberly Hart-Simpson returning to Coronation Street?

ITV explained: “Roy (David Neilson) may be DS Swain’s number one suspect for the murder of missing Lauren Bolton but Daniel knows he’s also still under suspicion.

“Desperate to clear his name he enlists the help of Nicky, who previously worked as an escort herself, when she first met Daniel who turned to her for emotional support after losing wife Sinead to cancer.

"Nicky is now an outreach worker in the community and Daniel believes she may be able to help find information about Lauren’s disappearance from the girls she supports on the streets."

The broadcaster added: “The connection still there between the pair, Nicky is keen to try and help Daniel, but the girls she works with are scared and vulnerable following news of Lauren’s murder.

“Can Nicky encourage them to open up and shed some more light on who may be behind the attack?”

Speaking about her return to Corrie, Kimberly said “it’s a pleasure to be back” and she is “looking forward to the audience finding out who and where she [Nicky] is today”.

Kimberly, who will be coming back for a guest stint commented: “It’s been 4 years since we first met Nicky and it is once again a pleasure to be back on the cobbles.

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“Stories surrounding women within the sex industry have often been forgotten, shamed or unspoken. But not at Coronation Street, they respectfully explore the world these women live in, the impact it has on the community and at some points dangers attached to the work.

“The story of Lauren Bolton has allowed the safety of other characters to come forward such as Cassie but unfortunately led to the devastating effects of conspiracy theories by other folk.

“Nicky has fought against all stereotypes and I am looking forward to the audience finding out who and where she is today.”