Craig Whitely was Chalkie Whitely's drum-playing grandson who lived with Chalkie at 9 Coronation Street in 1982. Craig was living with Chalkie while his dad Bob, a merchant seaman, was at sea. In moving to No.9 from their house in Viaduct Street, Chalkie hoped to escape from Phyllis Pearce, Craig's maternal grandmother who doted on Craig and also had her eye on Chalkie.
On moving in, Craig upset the neighbours with his drums, which annoyed even Chalkie. Craig wanted to start a band and skived off school with his friends.
Within a few weeks, Phyllis tracked her errant relations down and tried to convince Chalkie to let Craig move in with her, telling him that No.9 was a tip and not fit for a growing lad to live in. When Chalkie and Craig built a pigeon coop together, Phyllis released the pigeons as she thought they were dirty. Chalkie got the pigeons back and looked after them.
In November, Bob returned ashore and announced he was leaving the Navy and emigrating to Australia with Craig. Craig didn't think much of the prospect but came round to the idea when Bob invited Chalkie to come along if he could afford it. Chalkie felt too old to make a new start and joined forces with Phyllis to persuade Bob to keep things as they were, but Bob wanted to make up for his absences from Craig's life to date and Chalkie, realising Craig would have better opportunities in Australia, convinced him to go.
The following year, Chalkie won on a five-horse accumulator and moved to Australia to settle with the family after all.