Sean arrived in Coronation Street in 2004 in his search for lodgings. There he found a home at No.11 and, following his sacking from a cosmetics firm, became Underworld's first male machinist. Sean quickly became a surrogate son to his landlady Eileen Grimshaw, but he would forever play second fiddle to her sons Todd and Jason. As well as the factory, Sean was a barman at the Rovers Return from 2005 to 2018 and took over the catering upon Betty Williams's death in 2012, being entrusted with her famous hotpot recipe at the same time.
Sean wears his heart on his sleeve and often struggles to maintain serious relationships. The two main loves of his life, sonographer Marcus Dent and vicar Billy Mayhew, left him for Maria Connor and Todd Grimshaw respectively, with the latter causing him to be kicked out of No.11 after twelve years.
In 2007, Sean impregnated his friend Violet Wilson in order to give her a baby, with the understanding that he would play no part in the child's upbringing, however when Dylan was born, Sean reneged on the deal causing Violet to flee Weatherfield with Jamie Baldwin. Though he eventually traced his son to London in 2011, Sean's role in Dylan's life is limited to the occasional visit.
The transitory nature of Sean's life has meant that he often lives on the breadline. A notable low point came in 2018 when, after losing both of his jobs and home, he had to beg on the streets. He was rescued by Billy, who let him move into 19a Rosamund Street until he got back on his feet.
In April 2004, he was seen again when Karl Foster and Todd Grimshaw had a night out on Manchester's Canal Street. In August of that year, he turned up in Coronation Street, looking for somewhere to live. Todd's mother, Eileen Grimshaw, took a shine to him and invited him to be her lodger, much to the chagrin of her other son, Jason Grimshaw. When Eileen and Jason fell out over Todd moving away, Eileen asked Sean to move out for a while so she could mend her relationship with Jason. Sean later moved back in.
He had a very brief relationship with veterinarian Tim White. Sean gained employment at Underworld, where he made friends with Fiz Brown and Kelly Crabtree. His former boss Danny Baldwin's nickname for him was "Mincemeat". He also got a second job in the Rovers Return as a barman.
Kelly once tried to seduce Sean even though she knew he was gay. When he defended himself against her physical advances, he ended up giving her a bruise. Kelly was angry at him and cost him his job by claiming the bruise was from some kind of assault. Sean later got his job back and forgave Kelly. Despite these events, Kelly and Sean remained friends.
In 2006, Sean reunited with his 'father' Brian Tully, who had left his mother for another woman when Sean was ten years old. On Father's Day 2006, Brian revealed that he was not Sean's biological father, and that Sean's mother had in fact been having an affair with another man - a plumber called Paul Jones, who did not know that Sean existed.
Sean was involved in a plot with Violet Wilson and Jamie Baldwin, when Violet became convinced that Jamie was in love with Sean, only to find that Jamie was actually in love with his stepmum, Frankie Baldwin.
In February 2007, Michelle Connor introduced Sean to her new boyfriend, Sonny Dhillon. Sean recognised Sonny as a former boyfriend. Sean confronted Sonny about their past relationship. Later, they rekindled their affair, but were soon discovered by both Jamie Baldwin and Steve McDonald. Michelle's brothers, Liam and Paul, questioned Sean about Steve's claims and later forced him to admit the truth to Michelle, devastingly ending her betrothal to Sonny.
2007-2008: Baby Dylan
In June 2007, Sean decided to be a sperm donor to Violet. After visiting the hospital with Violet for her twelve-week scan, Sean got the number of the sonographer, Marcus Dent, and started a romance with him. They went through a rough patch when Sean tricked his boyfriend into revealing the sex of the baby, totally disrespecting Violet as she didn't want to know whilst Sean did. It was revealed that Violet was expecting a boy. Sean and Violet fell out due to the fact that Sean wanted to be the baby's father but Violet saw him as the sperm donor as they had originally agreed. Sean looked into legal advice about the situation but it was too expensive. He and Violet finally called a truce and Sean lent Violet and Jamie the money for a flat together. Unfortunately Violet and Jamie found Sean's attention suffocating and agreed to move down to London together for a fresh start as a family. However, Violet went into labour at the Rovers Return on 22nd February, whilst Jamie was moving their things down to London, so Sean had to stay for the birth of his son. When he was born, Sean shouted out that he was the first person his son had seen. He was then seen bonding with his son whilst Violet was in hospital, upsetting Jamie who planned to be his father.
On 29th February, Jamie, Violet and Dylan left the Street but Violet's sister, Lauren, told Sean that they were leaving. Sean refused to believe that they were leaving forever and later blamed himself. Eventually he had to admit they had gone for good. When Sean was jealous of Marcus staying with an ex in London, it became clear that it was time to move on. On 3rd September 2008, at a party at Liam's, Sean fell for Tom Kerrigan. Sean asked Tom if he minded if he kissed him, Tom declined and Sean stormed off. Nevertheless, Sean and Marcus split a couple of days later.
2009-2016: Searching for love
In July 2009 Sean fell for a gay man named Leon whilst attending Weatherfield Health & Fitness with Jason. Trying to impress Leon, Sean claimed that Jason was his boyfriend, and during a later session at the gym, feigned being upset claiming that Jason had "dumped" him in order to invoke sympathy. This backfired however, when Leon stated he wasn't interested in camp men, and later admitted to Sean that he was in love with Jason. Sean tried to tell Leon that Jason wasn't gay, but he refused to believe him. After Jason won Mr Gay Weatherfield while drunk, the pair were forced to admit to Leon that Jason was straight. A shocked Leon then reported Jason and had him disqualified from the competition.
Sean decided to track down Dylan in 2010, but worried that Violet would turn him away, sent a friend request on Facescene posing as Liz McDonald, although initially angry, Liz became sympathetic as Sean only wanted to find his son, so she contacted Violet who then sent Sean a request on his own account as well as photographs of a two-year old Dylan.
Sean began visiting Dylan and Violet in London. On one visit on Easter Sunday in 2011, Sean was surprised to find Marcus at Violet and Jamie's residence. As Marcus and Violet were both going through relationship troubles, the two men took Dylan out for the day, but upon returning saw Jamie departing in a cab, seemingly ending their relationship. A sympathetic Sean offered to look after Dylan for a while but Violet accused him of trying to steal her son, and told him that the Violet he once knew was now gone. Sean retaliated by accusing Violet of being homophobic and not wanting to pollute Dylan with his mannerisms. He subsequently left and returned home.
Marcus later returned to Weatherfield and Sean reconciled their relationship. Over the summer they took care of Dylan after Violet ended up in hospital. In late-2012, the relationship ended after Marcus discovered he had feelings for Maria Connor and got together with her, which left Sean single once again.
2016-: Leaving Eileen's and hardships
Sean and Billy split up in 2016. In August, Sean demanded Eileen to pick between him and Todd after he found Todd and Billy all over each other. Pat Phelan manipulated Eileen into picking Todd so Sean left and moved into 3 Coronation Street.
In 2017, Sean took a job at Rosamund Street Medical Centre where he was sacked after only a few months for breaking patient confidentiality. At the start of 2018, Sean had more trouble when he accidentally deleted photos of baby George Appleton on a computer so was kicked out of No.3 by Angie Appleton. Sean then moved in with close friends Fiz and Tyrone Dobbs at 9 Coronation Street. Sean took control of the family, as Fiz was away, and undertook numerous household chores, including washing, cooking and cleaning; as well as taking care of Ruby Dobbs and Hope Stape. When Tyrone and Sean went out for a meal together as a pretend couple in order to get a free dinner, they were mistaken for actually being a couple and a photograph of the pair kissing spread around the street.
Following Tyrone and Fiz's split after it was discovered that Tyrone had slept with Gemma Winter during a rift with Fiz, Sean continued staying at No. 9 with Fiz, and Tyrone moved in with business partner Kevin Webster. Sean was concerned when Fiz hoped for reconciliation with Tyrone, and wanted him to find a place of his own. Although Fiz's hopes at getting back with Tyrone was temporarily on hold, she wished to have her own independence with the girls and felt she was relying too much on Sean to do the housework. Sean was very concerned as he had barely any money to his name to find a new place, but chose not to tell Fiz about his problems and began desperately searching for local jobs as well as contacting old acquaintances for lodgings. In July 2018, Liz offered Sean a place to stay, however, she changed her mind after he got her old job behind the bar at the Rovers following her sacking, and thinking that Sean deliberately betrayed her; she told him that he could forget about moving in. Sean attempted at one last ditch effort to find lodgings, but it proved unsuccessful. After his shift, he found an old tent in the bin and set it up in the park where he secretly began living in after moving out of Fiz's.
After weeks living rough, Sean's predicament was discovered by Billy, who then offered him to move in with him at 19a Rosamund Street, which Sean reluctantly accepted after he was forced to finally ask for help.
The character of Sean Tully was introduced for a one-off basis in July 2003. Ten months later, he appeared for a further two episodes in April 2004, before returning as a regular character four months later from August onwards.
First and last lines
"Cheers mate, I didn't know you were coming." (First line, to Martin Platt)