Coronation Street Past And Present Wiki

Arnold Henry Swain was a character in Coronation Street from Ep 1989 - 23 Apr 1980 to Ep 2081 - 11 Mar 1981. He was the bigamist "second husband" of Emily Bishop. In early 1981 he returned to terrorise Emily by wanting her to commit suicide with him but Emily broke free and Arnold fled and was later arrested and sectioned. Arnold later died in a mental hospital in 1981. Arnold was played by actor George Waring.



Arnold Henry Swain was born in about 1925 to Mr Swain and Mrs Swain. He had a sister Flora Swain. He married in 1965 but soon left his wife Margaret Swain and they never officially divorced. Arnold was a pet shop owner. He used to claim his wife had died.


Pet shop owner Arnold Swain met Emily Bishop in April 1980. Emily had found love again after her first husband Ernie Bishop was shot dead in January 1978 in a bungled wages snatch. Emily and Arnold later married in September that year, with Arnold saying he was a widower. Arnold was sure his secret was safe.

But in December 1980 it was revealed that Arnold was already married, therefore a bigamist. The revelation of the bigamy was that when Arnold was away, Emily looked after the shop, and an insurance agent called Mr Emery came in saying he needed Arnold's signature as a Mrs Swain of The Meadows, Worthing in Sussex, wanted to surrender an insurance policy that Arnold had taken out on her many years earlier. Emily thought it was for Arnold's long deceased mother, and said that she died many years ago. Mr Emery said it was not for his mother, but his living wife. Emily was shocked and disappointed to learn she had married a bigamist.

Arnold fled and Emily reported him to the police. Arnold later terrorised Emily into a suicide pact but Emily said she was to get her Bible from upstairs. As she did she ran out of the house. She alerted Len Fairclough and Arnold fled into the night. Len searched the house but Arnold was gone.

Arnold arranged to meet Emily at the local park at a certain time but she was accompanied by the police. Arnold was apprehended by the police and taken away. He was later admitted to a mental institution. Arnold died on the 22nd December 1981 of natural causes, just days after he sent a letter to Emily requesting she visit him. Emily was told of the news on the 28th December 1981 and was saddened. She discovered that Arnold left her £2000 in his will.


In January 1982, Margaret Swain turned up to see Emily. Emily gave her the £2000 Arnold left her. Emily could finally put Arnold behind her and move on with her life.

Memorable info[]

Appearances: 23 April 1980-10 December 1980, 4-11 March 1981

Born: About 1925

Died: 22nd December 1981

Full Name: Arnold Henry Swain


Siblings: Flora Swain

Spouse: Margaret Swain (1965-1981), Emily Bishop (1980-1981) bigamous

Children: None