Ann Patterson (Heather McHale) 1999-2000, 2001
First Regular Appearance: 3.1 (#141) Tuesday 21st September 1999
Last Regular Appearance: 4.2 (#204) Sunday 8th October 2000
Returned: 4.21 (#223) Sunday 11th March 2001
Duration: 141 - 204, 223 ½ SE: 3.1 – 4.2, 4.21
Occupation: Owner of Patterson PR Football Agency (1999-2001)
Last Seen: Returning from living in Brighton, then leaving for Chelsea with Scott and baby Sam.
Ann first got into the business of football PR through meeting her long-term partner Michael Dillon. They first got together in 1992 when Ann was sixteen, and over the next several years she learnt her trade through following him across various football clubs. By July 1999 Ann was a fully-fledged agent with her own business, Patterson PR, representing professional footballers. It was at this time that Michael transferred from Blackburn Rovers to Harchester United, and with a strong squad bursting with new talent, Ann decided it would be a great opportunity to relocate her agency to the Midlands town. She proves her efficiency when shortly into her and Michael’s first season at the club, a plane crash kills four of the first team.
One of Ann’s new clients is cocky trouble-maker Scott Lucas, who many would consider a tough challenge, but there is an immediate connection between the two. After getting to know Scott, Ann begins to realise she may have stayed with Michael for so long due to loyalty, and doesn’t feel the same way about him anymore. It is this guilt of betraying Michael after he introduced her to the world of football that causes Ann to accept Michael’s marriage proposal, but realises things are getting out of hand when the pair look to buy a new house together. Scott pleads with Ann not to go through it, and she makes the decision to end things with Michael. With him now pushing thirty-years-old, Michael’s time in Harchester comes to an end and he is transferred to Charlton Athletic, and away from Ann.
Ann sees a lot of potential in Kelly James, and takes her on as part of the business. She and Scott then take their relationship to the next stage with her moving into his bachelor pad. With Ann, as always, comes her business, and Scott comes to learn how Michael often felt second in its place. He soon gets annoyed at his fellow team mates constantly in his flat to talk business with his girlfriend, and it leads to a big argument. Scott cheats on Ann and she finishes with him. At this same time, Kelly causes scandal when she is blackmailed into bed with Karl Fletcher, and Ann once again puts the business’s interest and image first, firing Kelly. When Scott says he’ll do anything to win Ann back, she tells him he has to sort out his past demons and see a therapist, which gives her (and the audience) an insight into why Scott has behaved as he has.
Over the summer, Ann realises she has been working so hard that she has been pregnant for many months without realising(!). The baby, of course, is Scott’s but Ann isn’t sure about them getting back together. Their son Sam is born shortly into the 2000-01 season, and wanting to take time out to be a mom, Ann goes to live with her mother in her old home of Bristol. Before going away, Ann does a deal with the devil and allows Victoria Baptiste to invest in Patterson PR, thus changing the name to Patterson-Palmer. Later in the season, Ann comes back to Harchester and sells her remaining share of Patterson-Palmer to Victoria. Spending time with an out-injured Scott, she reveals she is open to them being a proper family. Scott leaves for Chelsea shortly afterwards and Ann and Sam go with him.
A year and a half later Scott is still with Chelsea, and on a brief return to Harchester reveals to Tash that he and Ann are no more, though he has regular access to Sam.