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Stella Rigby was the landlady of the White Swan, member of the Lady Victuallers, wife of Paul, and friend of Bet Lynch.

Stella invited Bet to join the LV just after Bet became landlady of the Rovers in March 1985. The LV had been the cornerstone of Annie Walker's social life and Stella was cut from the same cloth as the former landlady; full of airs and graces and, in their first few encounters, a thinly-veiled disdain for Bet. According to Alec Gilroy, she was a nymphomaniac.

When the White Swan and the Rovers competed against each other in Newton & Ridley's Brainiest Pub contest, Bet was hoping to wipe the smile off Stella's face but was put out when Stella produced a fully degree-educated team for the White Swan, which triumphed over the Rovers team. Bet was gracious in defeat but Stella couldn't resist gloating that there wasn't any doubt about the outcome.

Later that year, Stella offered her support to Bet after finding out she was in trouble with the brewery for going on a cruise without getting permission from them first, but Bet didn't appear convinced by her sincerity.

Stella and Bet became friends. When Bet was long overdue a holiday in 1988 and Alec kept saying no, Bet booked a trip to Morocco and took Stella. In November, Bet and Stella went to a health farm to lose weight but they couldn't stick it for more than a week and lived it up in a hotel instead, letting their husbands think they were giving it their all at the health farm. Paul and Alec found out anyway. A month later, Bet used Stella to get rid of Charlie Bracewell, who Alec had taken on as a barman at the Rovers. After inviting Stella over, Bet instructed Charlie to treat Stella well. Stella was so impressed with him that she poached him to work at the White Swan - exactly as Bet had planned.

When Alec was away for a few months on a tour of the Middle East, Bet was lonely and went on nights out with Paul, without Stella's knowledge. Alec returned early and caught Bet and Paul returning from a night out together and assumed she'd been unfaithful, causing a separation. News of this soon reached Stella who at first laughed off the suggestion that Paul would be interested in Bet - he preferred younger women - but she couldn't explain them going out together and let rip at Bet, calling her a bitch. The Gilroys reconciled soon after this.

Stella and Bet apparently made up their friendship as they went on holiday together to Stella's holiday home in Tenerife in 1992. A few months later, Stella checked over Bet's figures when the brewery told Bet the Rovers was overstaffed. Stella and Bet believed otherwise.

In March 1993, Councillor Harry Potts told Stella about a road-widening scheme which could mean the White Swan would be demolished. She then discovered that Harry had told Bet the same thing about the Rovers, and that he was leaking them "inside" information for free drinks. They got revenge on Harry by making him buy all the drinks at a party in exchange for their silence.

A year later, Stella underwent a facelift operation, trying to keep the news from getting out. Bet gleefully spread the gossip though and bought the patient a "21 Today" birthday card from The Kabin.

When Jim and Liz McDonald were taken on as managers by the brewery that same year, they trained at the White Swan. In October 1995, Stella found out from the Gazette that the brewery were selling seven of their smaller pubs, including the White Swan and the Rovers, and passed the news onto Bet. While the Rigbys had enough funds to buy their pub outright, Bet had no savings and left the Rovers a few weeks later.

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