Kate Winterton was a young college student who started at Manchester Polytechnic in 1989. Kate went to Manchester to take Environmental Studies so that she could live away from her parents. Her first day got off to a bad start as she couldn't find the lecture theatre, however she was somewhat reassured when she met two equally lost classmates, Jenny Bradley and Stuart Haley.

Kate ran into Jenny and Stuart again later that day outside the lecture theatre, where Jenny was looking over some activities on offer to students. Kate suggested they go in for freefall parachuting, but Jenny wasn't keen on the idea. Trying to strike up a friendship, Stuart asked if the girls wanted to go for a drink, but Jenny turned down this invitation too, and went home instead. Jenny hadn't enjoyed the day as she was nervous about giving evidence at Alan Bradley's upcoming trial, possibly putting her dad in prison for attempted murder.