Susan was befriended by Albert not long after he started in his job as Bessie Street's new lollipop man in November. The girl was a closed book but her sad face told Albert that she came from an unhappy home. On Guy Fawkes Day, Albert gave Susan fireworks so that he could see her smile. The next day, she sported a bruise on her face which she claimed she got in PT, an explanation Albert doubted, especially when she changed her story about which day the accident had occurred on.
Eventually, Susan trusted Albert enough to say that she made the tea for herself and her brother Stephen every day as her parents worked late. When he probed her for further information, Susan began avoiding him. A chance encounter at Gamma Garments concerned him all the more, when Susan attempted to rush off without speaking to Albert and then cried when he asked her how the fireworks were. Later, Susan plucked up the courage to run away from home and turned up in Coronation Street looking for Albert. Only then did Susan feel brave enough to tell Albert that her father Jim often beat her and her mother May. Susan refused to go back for her mum's sake - she blamed Susan for making Jim lose his temper and had told her not to come back when she'd left home once before - but Albert persuaded her to go back by asking her to think about her little brothers and how much they relied on her. In exchange, Albert took Susan home and promised to make sure her dad didn't touch her again.
At the Schofield residence, Albert just missed Jim but threatened May with the authorities if there was any further trouble. The next day, Jim questioned Susan about the purpose of Albert's visit and Susan unwittingly contradicted her mother's story about him going there to return her schoolbag. Albert later confronted Jim while he was digging up Coronation Street to lay down telephone cables and, backed up by Harry Hewitt, warned him that he would go to the police if the violence didn't stop.
Albert's meddling succeeded in keeping Susan safe, at least for a while. By January 1964, when Susan was twelve years old, it was common knowledge that she being abused again, with Len Fairclough remarking that she was always starved to death and black and blue.
Early that year, due to the construction of a new roundabout, all of the town's traffic was diverted down Rosamund Street making the road more dangerous. Meanwhile, due to the large class sizes at Bessie Street lessons were taking place in a temporary classroom across the road from the main building, a situation which led teachers Kenneth Barlow and Dave Robbins to campaign for a crossing. In late January, Susan got cut off from a group being led across the road by Dave and was knocked down by a bus. Although rushed to hospital, Susan later died from her injuries. The accident was witnessed by Albert, who was devastated by the news of the girl's death, wishing it had been him instead.
Following the tragic accident, Ken Barlow went on television to debate the school crossing issue with Frank Quaile, a man from the council. Quaile argued that the accident had occurred due to Susan breaking away from the main group, with Ken countering that the council had been neglectful by housing children in slum classrooms.