Coronation Street star Simon Gregson caught a lift to pick up his car after a boozy Aintree bust-up saw him quizzed by police. The soap actor was spoken to in the back of a police van after a row in a Toby Carvery pub opposite the Grand National racecourse.
Simon, who plays Steve McDonald on the ITV soap, enjoyed hospitality with other stars and had been photographed drinking Guinness in one of the famous course’s luxury suites earlier in the day. He went to pick up his BMW days after the races.
Clad in a red jacket and jeans, he made his way to the car park with an orange baseball cap covering most of his face. Police confirmed they were investigating a reported “altercation” between two men at The Rocking Horse, on Friday night.
It came days after it emerged the 47-year-old was reportedly asked to leave a club at co-star Alexandra Mardell’s leaving do. It was claimed he took his shirt off and danced on furniture, hurling abuse at staff, reports the Mirror.
Speaking about the race day spat, a source told the Mirror: “There was a bust-up and bouncers kicked him out – they pinned him to the ground before the police arrived. He was taken to the police van and spoken to for some time. It was all very messy.”
Hours earlier the much-loved star happily posed for pictures with Princess Anne’s daughter Zara Tindall, 40, and her ex-England rugby captain husband Mike, 43, during his day at the races Gregson also looked delighted as he rubbed shoulders with ex-footballer Dion Dublin, 52, comedian Jason Manford, 40, and Olympic heptathlete Kelly Sotherton, 45.
But the smile had vanished by the time officers were called to the pub, which offers all day roast dinners with unlimited sides for £7.49.
A police spokesman said: “We can confirm Merseyside Police were in attendance at the Rocking Horse pub on Grand National Avenue, Aintree. At around 9.20pm we received a report two men were involved in an altercation inside the pub. No injuries were reported and the victim declined to make a formal complaint to police. Inquiries are ongoing.”
Simon was approached for comment. He has played loveable taxi boss Steve for three decades and won a string of awards.
He has previously told how the pressures of being catapulted to fame as a teen in the ITV soap saw him turn to booze and drugs. He said benders in the nineties left him so wasted he would regularly show up late for filming – or not turn up at all.
Speaking to the Mirror in 2014, he recalled: “Me and my mates would get dangerously drunk. We were really stupid. I went completely wild. I’d pay for everyone to stay in hotel suites.
“I’d go through a bottle of Scotch at 4 or 5am after the pub. I was spending all my salary going out or on cars.
“Sometimes I’d be two hours late for work. Other times I’d not be there at all. I didn’t take it seriously and I didn’t want to be there.
“I hated being famous. I’m not proud of my behaviour, but getting wasted was a way of forgetting.”
He added: “The cocaine use came hand in hand with the alcohol abuse. I started smoking marijuana first.
“Reality wasn’t too great so this alternative reality with the use of substances was a better place to be. It was an experimentation at first and I could afford it.”