Des Foster was a painter/decorator and Councillor who asked Alf Roberts to back him over fighting vandalism on the Red Rec in July 1983. While at the shop, Des flirted with Bet Lynch, who at the time was Alf's tenant in the flat. He and Bet started going out together, causing friction between Alf and Bet as Des was a married man and Alf was worried about a scandal. As far as Bet was concerned, Des had initiated it and he was the one with a marriage and a standing in the community that could suffer from it. When Alf had to cover for them when Des's wife Edith turned up at the shop, he told Bet to dump Des or leave the flat. Des offered to set Bet as his mistress up in a flat in Jubilee Gardens but Bet wanted more and tried to get him to leave his wife. But Des wanted to have his cake and eat it and so Bet dropped him, telling him she wouldn't be a tart any more.
A few weeks later, Edith found out Des had been having an affair and threw him out. Des got a flat on Talgarth Avenue and told Bet he'd left Edith, and Bet, believing that he was serious about her, agreed to move in with him. However, Alf put Bet straight about Des being thrown out and Bet discovered that the woman Edith found out about was Des's other bit on the side. Heartbroken and feeling cheap, Bet finished with him.
In November, Des was sent by the brewery to decorate the Rovers. Des tried to chat Bet up but she decided to play him at his own game by going out with him and letting him think she was going to sleep with him again only for her to tell him he was only good for a laugh now and again.
Eight years later, a now married Bet hired Des to decorate the living quarters in the Rovers, hoping to make Alec Gilroy jealous to get back at him for leaving her over Christmas to work on a cruise. Des was now divorced and eager to pick up where he and Bet had left off. In a moment of weakness, Bet agreed to go out with Des - with all that it entailed - before coming to her senses and bailing out. Des sent his assistant Greg Simpson to finish the decorating but called on Bet after hours to tell her that there were no hard feelings. Bet subsequently invited Des over for Christmas dinner at the Rovers with her and granddaughter Vicky, who suspected that the pair were having an affair after catching sight of Des kissing Bet. Looking out for her grandfather, Vicky kept Des on his toes at dinner by questioning him on his marital status and living situation. Later, while alone with Bet, Des came on strong and Bet had to fight him off.
Des didn't see Bet again but when Alec returned from his cruise he was so impressed with his work that he decided to hire him again. Bet had to tell him her history with Des and made him believe her by showing him the bruises Des had given her when he hit her.
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