We first saw Ernie taking the photos at Elsie Tanner's wedding, under his professional name of Gordon Bishop. His father had died in 1956, and when his mother died in 1969 at the age of 70, he met shy Emily Nugent at the funeral. He took Emily on as an assistant in his shop, and two years later they were engaged.
Their courtship was clouded when Ernie was arrested and jailed in Spain for taking 'pornographic' photos when an assignment involving some business men and some models got out of hand. And later, he was also embarrassed to be caught drinking after-hours, watching a strip-show at the Gatsby Club. All of which is rather suprising as Ernest was also a Congregational lay preacher, and played the piano in chapel - though as an accomplished pianist, he also played at The Gatsby and accompanied Rita Littlewood when she sang at nightclubs.
In 1976, the photographic shop went bankrupt, and Ernie became
pay-clerk and right-hand man at Mike
Baldwin's new clothing factory. In January 1978, two raiders
burst into the office, armed with sawn-off shotguns and demanded
cash. Ernie tried to reason with them, but in the end capitualted
and handed over some money - just as Mike walked into the office
and nudged a suprised gunman, who shot Ernie. He died on the operating
table at Weatherfield General.