Milton Fanshaw was a love interest of Roy Cropper's mother, Sylvia Goodwin. They met while Sylvia was on a cruise holiday that she won in a competition and he gave her a uke-banjo as a gift, which she showed off to her friends and family. She kept in contact with him, but her son Roy didn't like her running up his phone bill. He turned up on Coronation Street at Sylvia's music contest between Norris Cole and Mary Taylor. He encouraged Sylvia to play her uke-banjo better, so that she could win. Norris and Mary were angered by Milton's arrival, although Roy, Sylvia and Hayley Cropper were delighted. He believed that Roy was rich and owned a restaurant as Sylvia failed to mention Roy ran a cafe, but she later admitted the truth, which Milton accepted.
Milton then wanted to turn Roy's Rolls into an American diner, themed like a train. He planned on buying the empty unit which previously belonged to Elliott & Son next door, so he could knock down the wall and merge them both together. Sylvia was delighted by the plan, but Roy liked the way his cafe was and refused. However, Milton still wanted to buy the butchers, but then decided against it.
He later planned on moving back to America, and bought Sylvia a first-class ticket so she could go with him. On the day of departure, Roy and Hayley said their goodbyes and she left with him. However, she decided not to go in the end and returned to the Croppers as she couldn't put up with the Americans in the queue.
Milton and Sylvia still kept in contact through video calls, introduced to her by Sophie Webster. In August 2012, he had injured himself by his pool by breaking his leg and apparently his hip. Sylvia received the news, and decided to fly over to America to visit him. They resumed their relationship and Sylvia began staying with him. Relationship problems began when Milton's daughter, Charity began thinking that Sylvia was using Milton, especially when he paid for her hip operation. Sylvia began playing Blackjack and got into problems, and Milton helped bail her out, which upset his daughter even more. Milton and Sylvia separated and she returned to Weatherfield. She briefly talked to him on the phone when they broke up, and Roy later phoned Milton to find out more information about Sylvia's gambling problems.
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