Mr Wilkinson was the manager of travel agent Rosamund Travel in Rosamund Street, Weatherfield. In 1990, both Alec and Bet Gilroy and Ernie Lumsden booked holidays to Madeira through Rosamund Travel, with Alec going there as Mr Wilkinson was a mate.
Due to an ear infection, Alec sold the holiday to Derek and Mavis Wilton, giving them the letter of entitlement he'd been given by the travel agent. The Wiltons were then surprised to discover at Manchester Airport that no tickets had been issued in their or the Gilroys' name and the letter they'd been given was meaningless. Sun Rise Tours desk clerk Mr Tasker spent the day trying to contact Rosamund Travel to clear up the matter, but got no answer from the phone. The next day, Mr Wilkinson received a call from Mr Tasker at home, and promised to go to the airport personally, but never arrived; having gone bust and boarded up the shop, Mr Wilkinson had disappeared with the money. Unable to trace him, the Wiltons focused their anger on Alec, believing that he'd known about the bankruptcy and conned them into buying a dud holiday.