A notorious serial rapist who attacked a string of women in their own homes is again trying to secure release from prison.

Andrew Barlow, now 67, was dubbed the “Coronation Street rapist” after his string of horrific sex assaults on women and girls in Bolton and across the region in the 1980s.

Barlow, once Britain’s most wanted man, was released from prison in March last year, only to be recalled six weeks later, and he has now launched an appeal to try and win his freedom.

A spokesman for the Parole Board said: "We can confirm the parole review of Andrew Barlow has been referred to the Parole Board by the Secretary of State for Justice and is following standard processes. 

"Parole Board decisions are solely focused on what risk a prisoner could represent to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.” 

Andrew Barlow was first published in 1988Andrew Barlow was first published in 1988 (Image: PA)

Barlow, who lived in Bolton and Oldham at various points of his life, had been serving 13 life sentences at the time of his release.

His most recent life sentence was handed down in 2017 when he pleaded guilty to raping a 15-year-old girl at knifepoint in Great Lever in January 1982.

The decision to release Barlow was met with widespread condemnation early last year, including from Blackley and Broughton MP Graham Stringer.

But he was only a free man for a matter of weeks in March 2023 before breaching his licencing conditions.

Barlow was given another life sentence in 2017Barlow was given another life sentence in 2017 (Image: GMP)

As part of the terms of his release he had been banned from the whole of Greater Manchester and ordered to stay at a specific address.

He had also been ordered to agree to advanced supervision and monitoring and to keep out of an inclusion zone to avoid contact with his victims.

For his brief period of freedom, Barlow was also restricted in his use of electronic technology.

In May last year the government confirmed that Barlow had been recalled to prison after an unspecified breach of his conditions.

Barlow was brought before Bolton Crown Court again in 2017Barlow was brought before Bolton Crown Court again in 2017 (Image: Newsquest)

Barlow, formerly known as Andrew Longmire, had originally been jailed in 1988 after a string of sex attacks on women in brick built terraced houses.

He was dubbed the “Coronation Street rapist” and briefly became Britain’s most wanted man in the ensuing man hunt.

Barlow was finally caught by police after trying to shoot his way out of a confrontation with officers with a shotgun.

As part of his appeal, the parole board will consider a wide selection of evidence.

The parole board spokesperson said: "A panel will carefully examine a huge range of evidence, including details of the original crime, and any evidence of behaviour change, as well as explore the harm done and impact the crime has had on the victims.  

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"Members read and digest hundreds of pages of evidence and reports in the lead up to an oral hearing.  

"Evidence from witnesses such as probation officers, psychiatrists and psychologists, officials supervising the offender in prison as well as victim personal statements may be given at the hearing.  

"It is standard for the prisoner and witnesses to be questioned at length during the hearing which often lasts a full day or more. Parole reviews are undertaken thoroughly and with extreme care.

“Protecting the public is our number one priority." 

A decision is expected by next week.