Warren Simpkins was a ex-schoolmate, workmate and cellmate of Rob Donovan's who he brought into Barlow's Buys when the shop was filled with stolen stock supplied by Tony Stewart that Rob and Tracy Barlow were finding hard to shift, including forty-seven hairdryers. Warren had gone straight(ish) running a firm that kitted out hotels with room items and he wasn't bothered where they came from so long as they were top quality but cheap. He relieved the shop of much of its gear, much to the delight of Rob and Tracy who believed they had found someone to take their items off them in the future and for a price which Rob considered made his friend look like a mug.

A few weeks later, Rob and Warren had an appointment at The Ship Hotel to see its manager where Peter was surprised to see Peter Barlow in the reception, not knowing he was meeting Tina McIntyre there behind his sister Carla Barlow's back.