Jamie Christopher Ramsden was the baby son of Eddie Ramsden and Marie Lancaster. Born in 1988, before his first birthday Jamie had been abandoned by his mother and was being raised by Eddie alone. Marie had suffered postnatal depression but Eddie believed her rejection of their son to be genuine and cut off all contact with her. Living with his mother at 1 Cromwell Street, Eddie worked on the building sites with Mrs Ramsden looking after Jamie during the day.
In November 1989, Eddie started going out with Rovers barmaid Tina Fowler. Afraid of putting her off, he didn't tell her about Jamie at first, and when she discovered that there was a baby under his roof, he passed Jamie off as his baby brother until Mrs Ramsden put her straight. Eddie managed to win Tina round by telling her about Marie, promising that he had no interest in going back to her.
Two months later, Eddie invited Tina on a trip to France with him and his mates to see a football match. Tina accepted but at the last minute they had to pull out as Mrs Ramsden had to go into hospital for tests so she couldn't watch Jamie. Feeling sorry for Tina, Sally Webster volunteered to have Jamie while Mrs Ramsden was in hospital. Sally and Kevin looked after Jamie with no major problems arising except for a momentary panic when an old lady moved his pram while Sally was in a shop at Weatherfield Precinct. With Eddie detained by the police in France after being picked up for football hooliganism, Tina returned alone to collect Jamie, but believing that Tina's flat was no place for a baby Bet Gilroy insisted on putting them both up at the Rovers instead. Jamie's presence spoiled Alec Gilroy's plans to have his granddaughter Victoria Arden over for the weekend, but by the time Eddie arrived back after a week and collected Jamie, even baby-hating Alec had warmed to Jamie and privately told Eddie that he could stay anytime.
After seeing a psychiatrist, Marie recovered from her depression and returned to the scene. Worried that she would try to snatch Jamie, Tina hid him at the Rovers, passing him off as her own to Marie when she overheard Alec mention a baby at the establishment. Marie quickly discovered this to be a lie and tried to recover Jamie from the Rovers by force, with her brother Carl Lancaster supporting her, only backing down when Bet made her see that it would look bad in court. To strengthen his case against Marie in an anticipated custody battle, Eddie got engaged to Tina and booked a registry office wedding for the following week, but after a conversation with Marie he changed his mind and reconciled with her instead.
For a while, Jamie had some stability with his parents at their Clarence Street home, where they moved after getting married. However, after a while Eddie started treating Marie like a baby-sitter while he went out with his mates, and later in the year he was handed a prison sentence for hitting a policeman at the Railwayman's Arms. Marie took the opportunity to leave Eddie, making sure that he wouldn't be able to trace her when he regained his freedom. Moving into a tower block at Maxton Walk, Marie couldn't work because of Jamie, and had to get by on the £40 a week she received from the social.
In November 1990, Marie and Jamie were given a lift home by taxi driver Don Brennan, who remembered them from their earlier visits to Coronation Street. After seeing where she lived, Don let Marie off with the fare. He became her regular driver to and from the hospital, where Jamie met a physiotherapist three times a week because of a bad hip. Horrified at her living conditions, and worried for Jamie's health, Don never charged her for the journeys, telling her that seeing Jamie smile was enough satisfaction. As Marie's situation continued to prey on his mind, Don eventually told Ivy Brennan about her. After seeing the flat for herself and meeting Marie and Jamie, Ivy made the suggestion that they stay at 5 Coronation Street over Christmas. Marie agreed, but after clashing with Ivy on Christmas Day over feeding Jamie toffee before dinner, Marie decided that the Brennans were becoming too interfering and left the house with Jamie. They had no further contact with either of them.