Coronation Street Wiki

Paul Rigby was the landlord of the White Swan and husband of Stella.

Paul was an older man with a large moustache and an out-of-control libido. He was rarely seen in his wife's company, preferring to spend his evenings chasing skirt, with a passion for young bimbos. His nocturnal activities were a known fact to Stella, but she tolerated it on the understanding the young ladies were just humouring her randy husband. Others heard differently; Alec Gilroy had seen Paul in a few situations were no one would think he was anybody's husband.

Due to Bet Gilroy's friendship with Stella, Paul paid the occasional visit to the Rovers Return, and he considered himself a friend of Alec's - a sentiment Alec did not share. In December 1988, he saw Alec to tell him that Stella and Bet, who were missing from a health farm they were staying at, were living it up in a local hotel as they couldn't stand the health farm regime. Alec was pleased at having the opportunity to take the mickey out of Bet when she came home and pretended that she'd seen it through to the end.

The following April, with Alec two months into a theatrical tour of the Middle East, Bet was missing male company and agreed to go out on the town with Paul, who told her that Alec had asked him to look in on her. A fun evening was followed by two others, which set tongues wagging, with cellarman Jack Duckworth making a dreadful attempt at warning Paul off. To prove there was nothing in their dates, Bet and Paul set off from the Rovers bar, with Bet looking a million dollars. Bet saw Paul merely as good company, and had no intention of being unfaithful to Alec, but she had to slap him back on one occasion when his hand slipped in the back of a taxi. Paul apologised to Bet the following day and they made up, but Bet made it clear that he wouldn't get a third chance.

Paul's absences from the marital home were scarcely noticed by Stella, who was well used to it. Calling on Bet to discuss the matter, Stella told her with some amusement about Paul's transparent tale about playing cards all night, and wondered where he found his tarty and cheap lady companions, remarking that they'd passed their sell-by date on Woolworths' counter. Bet admitted that Paul had been to the Rovers to see how she was, but didn't tell Stella about their nights out.

Bet and Paul were rumbled when Alec returned home from his tour three weeks early, while Bet and Paul were on a date. Though the staff raced to locate and warn Bet, they were unsuccessful, and Bet didn't find out until she stumbled through the back door with Paul chaperoning her. Paul quickly devised a story where Bet had called on Stella and he'd driven her home, but their guilty behaviour told Alec a different story, and he convinced himself that she'd been unfaithful. In the ensuing weeks, Bet and Alec sought a divorce and battled for control of the Rovers. Hearing about Alec's allegations, Stella turned up at the Rovers to tell Alec there was no chance Bet and Paul were having an affair as Bet was too old for Paul. However, after a graphic description of the state they'd been in when Alec confronted them, Stella changed her mind, and fell out with Bet. The misunderstanding was cleared up weeks later when Bet and Alec, tired from fighting each other, dropped their guards and Alec accepted that Bet was being truthful.

In June 1990, Paul visited the Rovers to pledge support for the Gilroys in behalf of the Licensed Victuallers Association, of which he was the chair that year, regarding their battle with Newton & Ridley. Bet and Alec were facing eviction for refusing to go along with brewery plans to turn the Rovers into an American theme pub called Yankees. Alec was warmed by the news - but when Paul revealed that his "support" only went as far as giving the matter a full airing at next month's meeting, with Paul and Stella off to the Algarve in the meantime, Alec quickly soured.

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