Four months later, Neil was outfitting the new salon at 2 Coronation Street for Denise Osbourne when Curly Watts asked him to convert the loftspace of No.7 into an observatory. Neil took the job but inadvertently caused trouble for Curly when he mentioned it to Curly's fiancée Kimberley Taylor, who had other ideas for the loft. He also had fun with Mavis Wilton by joking that Curly would point his telescope at her house.
While at No.7, Neil ran into Angie again and with some awkwardness, he asked her out. Angie accepted and they went for a drink at the Rovers Return together. All was going well until Neil was late for dinner at Angie's, causing Angie to check on his whereabouts with Denise Osbourne at the salon. Denise became curious about Angie and Neil's relationship and said she knew Neil well as she was married to him. Neil arrived late for dinner to find an empty house - Angie had gone out - and the next day Angie told him to beat it for making a mug of her. Neil blamed Denise for wrecking his chance with Angie, but Angie agreed to give him another chance when Denise told her that there was nothing between her and Neil; he had rescued her from a dull marriage to an older man, but once she married him, his appeal wore off as he just looked like a kid. Neil and Denise were arranging a divorce although they were on friendly terms with each other.
However, Neil still harboured feelings for Denise. When Angie moved out of No.7 to get away from Curly's lust, and into Jim's Cafe flat, she hoped that Neil would move in with her and told him he was free to come and go as he pleased. Neil didn't pick up on this and went to see Denise to tell her he wanted to stop the divorce and give their marriage another try, claiming that he still loved her and Angie meant nothing to him. Denise, who no longer saw him that way, told him to leave her alone and focus on Angie. Angie didn't notice anything between Neil and Denise until Neil got drunk at a party and punched Reg Holdsworth with a punch meant for Jim McDonald who was dancing with Denise. Angie dumped Neil and threw his things from her flat into his cement mixer, but surprisingly when he went to the effort of cooking a meal and telling her she was the only woman in his life, Angie took him back and he accepted her offer to move into the flat with her.
Angie spent much of her time working on designs for her boss Hanif Ruparell, who was also dating Denise. Neil annoyed Angie by being dismissive of Hanif and making fun of his ponytail. More trouble was caused when Neil warned Denise off Hanif by telling her he was a womaniser. The last straw came when Neil tried to delay Denise and Hanif leaving for a date, then launching a tirade at Hanif and trying to provoke him into a fight. Hanif didn't respond to Neil's provocation, even when Neil pushed him into a table, but Angie was humiliated and dumped Neil again. Following this, Neil gave up the flat and left the area, pushing a goodbye note through the door of Jim's Cafe for Angie.