Ernie was raised in Weatherfield and followed in his late father's footsteps by pursuing photography as a profession, eventually taking on the family's camera shop. A principled, kindly man, Ernest remained a bachelor into his early forties. In 1969, he met Emily Nugent, a fellow member of the local mission circuit. They were well-suited and married in 1972, buying No.3 Coronation Street.
In 1976, the studio's rent was trebled and Ernie put the camera shop into liquidation. After a period of unemployment, the Bishops were saved when Mike Baldwin opened denim factory Baldwin's Casuals in the street and gave Ernie a job as wages clerk. It was at the factory in 1978, when Ernie was making up wage packets, that two men attempted a wages snatch and one of them, Ed Jackson, accidentally fired a shotgun at Ernie, killing him.
As well as his photography, Ernie was on the Community Centre committee with Emily and was an accomplished pianist. His piano would remain at No.3 for many years after his passing.
Ernest Bishop was born to George and Caroline Bishop on 11th August 1930 and was educated at Weatherfield Grammar School. He later became a photographer and arrived at the wedding of Steve and Elsie Tanner in 1967 to take photographs.
While sorting out the wages for the factory girls at Baldwin's Casuals in January 1978, two robbers broke in and demanded that Ernest handed over the money, while he was held at gunpoint. The man holding the gun, Tommo, accidentally set the gun off, and shot Ernest. Ernest was rushed to Weatherfield General, but later died following emergency surgery, leaving Emily widowed. The two thugs were apprehended by police within a few days and were later found guilty of murder.
Emily still keeps photos of Ernest around her house and is still fondly remembered. When Ernest's niece Freda Burgess visited Emily, they talked about Ernest and looked through his photographs. In 2006, Emily met a man called Ed Jackson at St. Saviour's Church. She later found out he was Ernest's killer who came back to make amends, although Emily couldn't forgive him. After a talk with Reverend Sedgley, she found out that Ed was contemplating suicide. Emily decided to turn the other cheek and forgive him, and gave him Ernest's camera to send her photos to let her know how he was getting on.
In 2012, Norris Cole borrowed Ernest's old dancing shoes from Emily. They were the ones that Ernest had worn at their engagement party in 1971 and Emily was devastated when they were deliberately vandalised by Tracy McDonald who had an ongoing feud with Norris, as she believed they were his.
Ernest's departure in 1978 came when actor Stephen Hancock felt he had to resign from Granada at what he perceived as the unjust way contracts were handled, particularly with the major stars; and wanted a more equitable system.
Ernest was first credited as Gordon Bishop, but this was later revealed to be his middle name.
First and last lines
"They're taking the mon..." (Final line, which he never finished).