Laurie Dyson was the landlord of The Black Dog pub in Blackpool. In November 2003, Jim McDonald summoned son Steve to visit him in Holmes Gate Prison where he was serving an eight-year sentence for the manslaughter of Jez Quigley. Jim had heard from a friend that wife Liz, who was working as a barmaid in the pub, and Laurie were an item. He asked Steve to go to the resort and find out if his information was correct.
Liz was delighted to see her son again but he became as concerned as his father when it became apparent that there was something going on between barmaid and employer, despite Liz's protestations that their relationship was innocent and Laurie simply provided a roof over her head. Liz also attended a reunion of licencees of Newton & Ridley where she bumped into old friend Bet Lynch. She confessed to her that she did sleep with Laurie once but now bitterly regretted the act. In the meantime, Jim, consumed with jealousy, escaped from prison and got Steve to take him to Blackpool to see Liz. Arrangements were made to meet from prying eyes in a caravan owned by Fred Elliott and Laurie, hearing on the radio of Jim's escape, became suspicious of Liz's movements. He followed her to the caravan and reported who he saw there to the police. Bet Lynch, hearing from Fred that his son Ashley Peacock and his child's nanny Claire Casey were on their way to stay in the caravan, managed to get Jim away before the police cars arrived.
Laurie tried to make Liz see that she'd be better off with him and with Jim back safely in jail. His polite enquiries as to whether or not the police had caught up with Jim made Steve instantly suspicious that Laurie had grassed his father up but Liz was equally convinced that Karen McDonald, who hated her in-laws, was the culprit. It was only when Liz made plans to flee with Jim and asked Laurie for her wages that his passionate declaration of love for her made her realise that he was the one who was responsible. She walked out of the pub and Laurie's life.
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