Born in 1940, Audrey had responsiblity thrust upon her at a young age, giving birth to Stephen at sixteen and Gail two years later, although they had different fathers, neither of whom took a role in the upbringing of their child. Only Gail was raised by Audrey, as Stephen was adopted by Audrey's neighbour Malcolm Reid and his family later moved to Canada. A flighty, flirty woman, Audrey's ambition was to enjoy life and Gail often took a backseat to her social life. As a result, Gail developed into an independent and headstrong young woman who rarely needed Audrey's advice.
Audrey moved into 11 Coronation Street in 1985 when she married Alf Roberts, owner of the Corner Shop. Alf was the former Mayor of Weatherfield and was one of the most affluent residents of the Street, but much to Audrey's frustration he was satisfied with living cheaply. Audrey didn't like the thought of living like poor people and pushed Alf into buying a new detached house in 1989. As one who enjoyed having and spending money, Audrey enjoyed the perks of Alf's position as Councillor and his second term as Mayor, which included prestigious parties and mixing with important people. Audrey was later elected to the Council herself in 1998. Alf died from a heart attack on New Year's Day 1999.
In 1998, Audrey bought the Coronation Street salon from Fiona Middleton, and she has managed it ever since. For many years, her closest friend in the Street was Alma Halliwell, who died in 2001. In 2002, Audrey came under threat from Gail's husband Richard Hillman, who tried to get hold of Audrey's money by convincing everyone she had dementia. Audrey was distressed by Richard's attempt to poison her family against her and relieved when his plot was discovered. Audrey is still a constant presence in Gail's life as she usually disapproves of her choice in men. Audrey currently lives at 5 Grassmere Drive in Oakhill.
A single mother, Audrey Potter originally had little interest in her daughter, Gail's life. She married local councillor Alf Roberts, in an episode on 23rd December 1985, enjoying her social status as mayoress in the 1990s and believing herself to be better than the other Street residents.
Often frustrated by Alf's cautious ways, Audrey was still devastated when he suffered a heart attack in 1987.
In 1988, Malcom Reid, the adoptive father of Audrey's son, Stephen, travelled from Canada to England in an attempt to get Audrey to leave Alf and marry him. Audrey refused, stating that Alf had been good to her and that the problems in her marriage were her fault too.
Over the years, Audrey mellowed from a social climber to a more sympathetic character. Audrey's other child, Stephen Reid, lives in Canada. She has never been short of love interests, and has had romantic entanglements with Fred Elliott and undertaker Archie Shuttleworth, among others. Audrey's best friend was Alma Halliwell (played Amanda Barrie). Audrey was devastated when Alma died of cervical cancer in the year 2001.
Audrey nearly became a victim of her serial killer son-in-law Richard when he discovered she was worth a lot of money, inherited from Alf. He set fire to her house but she was rescued by Steve McDonald. In the October 2006 period, Audrey spoke to her close friend Fred Elliott, who was due to marry Bev Unwin later that week, and told him how she wished he was marrying her, not Bev. This caused Fred to have doubts about his decision but had seemingly decided upon marrying Bev. Audrey then told Ashley that she would not be coming to the wedding, which led to Fred borrowing Bev's car to visit her. After a heart-to-heart, Fred prepared to leave Audrey's house to get back to the church but collapsed in the hall and died. Audrey, accompanied by the police broke the news to Ashley and Claire at the church.
Audrey struck up a relationship with old friend Bill Webster, in an episode in late 2006. However, on an episode on Christmas Day, Bill's wife Maureen turned up, and the secret affair was revealed. Bill returned to Germany but came back to the street early in the year 2007 and rekindled his relationship with Audrey, and he subsequently moved in with her.
She currently owns and runs a hair salon and employs Maria Connor and Natasha. Previous employees include Sarah and David Platt. In the September 2007 period, Audrey took her grandson David into her home after he got kicked out by Gail. Son Stephen returned in the Christmas 2007 period to offer David a job in Italy. He accepted but Audrey found drugs in his drawer at the salon and Stephen withdrew his offer. Jason, Sarah and Bethany decided to go, but Jason left Bethany and Sarah at the train station. Eventually, Audrey grew fed up with David, especially after she learned he had pushed Gail down the stairs in a fit of rage. She was dumbfounded when Gail refused to press charges, and still has a reticent relationship with her grandson.
In spring 2008, Audrey was contacted by Ted Page, Gail's biological father who never knew of Gail's existence. Audrey met up with him and soon told him he had a daughter. He was surprised, and Audrey was very surprised herself to learn Ted was gay. This led characters such as David's girlfriend Tina to jokingly question whether or not Audrey had "turned" Ted gay, which he denied.
On 4th August 2008 Audrey was returning from a 'booze cruise' in France with Bill, Janice and Roger. She'd been miserable the whole time and felt Bill had ignored her. Bill had been drinking so Audrey insisted she drove. While driving, Audrey began having an argument with Janice, who accused her of being a fortune hunter and caring nothing about Alf or Fred. Audrey was furious, even more so when Bill chose not to defend her, instead saying she'd been unhappy the whole trip. The argument caused her to car off the road and through a small group of trees crashing into a grey box and Audrey suffered a hurt arm. It was this which caused her to consider ending her relationship with Bill, and she asked him to move out.