Walter "Wally" Tanner was the father of Arnold Tanner and grandfather of Dennis and Linda. In 1966, he turned up at 11 Coronation Street to live with his ex-daughter-in-law Elsie. While there, he gambled away his pension on a horse, but it ended up coming in second. When Elsie discovered that her ex-husband Arnold had a large living quarters, she dumped Wally on him, saying that if he didn't take him Wally would have to go in a home.
Wally returned a year later and told Dennis that Norah (Arnold's current wife) was after his money. Dennis decided to look after Wally himself. But Wally ended up inviting his friends round which annoyed Dennis, and feeling unwanted, he left once again.