Alan Hoyle was the father of Charlotte Hoyle, an unexpected accomplice in John Stape's fumbling plan to steal the identity of emigrating teaching colleague Colin Fishwick and thus be able to re-enter the profession from which he was banned due to his criminal record. Charlotte, who knew both men, found out about the deception and loved the "living dangerously" aspect that it brought to their lives. Tragedy struck though when the real Colin returned from Canada and found out what was going on. In a heated argument, he collapsed and died, and was buried by John and Charlotte under building works at Underworld. Charlotte, in love with John, started to pester and stalk him and he had no option but to try and carry her along. Invited - or rather summoned - to her house, he was stunned to be introduced to Alan and his wife Dorothy as "Colin" who they had been told was Charlotte’s fiancé. John kept quiet, although he panicked about being invited to their house for Christmas Day. Alan warned John that his daughter was always determined to get her own way and asked him to let her down gently if he genuinely wasn’t committed to their relationship.
The unstable Charlotte started to insist that John leave his wife Fiz and attacked him with a hammer in 5 Coronation Street. He defended himself and struck her down with the same instrument in a panic when she tried to leave and tell Fiz what was going on. He left her body by the side of the rubble at the site of the tram crash which had occurred the same night, thinking she was dead and was stunned to hear that the rescuers had found that she was alive. Alan and Dorothy arrived at Weatherfield General where she was taken and were told by doctors that there was no hope of recovery from her diagnosed severe brain damage. They consulted "Colin" who agreed that her life support machine should be switched off.
Despite his best efforts, John was forced to continue associating with the Hoyles, including attending her funeral where he was asked to sit on the front pew as he was "almost family". A heart-stopping moment occurred when former teaching colleagues Ted and Kathleen recognised him but, on the pretext of needing the toilet, he managed to get away from the Hoyles and speak to them in his own persona. Outside St. Luke's Church though, they heard Alan refer to John as "Colin" and he hurriedly explained that Alan was "gaga" and called his own wife "Bernard". John shot way from the Hoyles as fast as he could but on Christmas Day, they turned up on the street, asking him to join them for Christmas dinner. Desperate not to be seen by anyone, he hurriedly agreed, but ending up having to guiltily listen as they reminisced about their daughter and eat a second dinner with family and friends afterwards!
In April 2011, John suffered a breakdown and upon arriving at the Hoyles' house, began pushing money through their letterbox. Alan and Dorothy phoned Fiz (unaware she was actually his wife) to come and collect him. When John's brother in-law Chesney Brown got suspicious of John, he went to visit the Hoyles and gave them John's real address. When they turned up, John headed back to their house, and while in the cellar with Alan (who had turned it into a bar), Alan confronted John and knew he was lying, as he was wearing a wedding ring. Dorothy later interrupted, holding John's ID and wanting an explanation. John then tied them up in the cellar, lured Chesney down there and tied him up as well. After a couple of weeks in the cellar, with John popping down to see them now and again, Alan attempted to tackle John on the stairs but accidentally fell down them, however he wasn't seriously injured. Upon their release and in the heat of the moment, John confessed to killing Charlotte and Colin Fishwick's mum Joy. Fiz overheard the confession and followed John. He then went on the run, and the Hoyles later sold their story about being held captive.
Dorothy and Alan later appeared at Weatherfield Crown Court for Fiz's murder trial in October 2011, where Dorothy was a witness for the prosecution. She gave her evidence and twisted the truth about Fiz saving them from John, desperate for justice to be served for Charlotte's murder.
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