Nigel Townsend, along with his friend Davey Aldred, was a loan shark that Zak Dingle owed money to. Zak, who's mental state had been in decline at the time, made a deal with the two men, but before he could repay them, he suffered a mental breakdown while out on the moors and had to be sectioned. While Zak recuperated, Nigel and Davey continued to visit the village to see if Zak would pay up. When Zak returned home for his great-granddaughter Sarah's birthday, he found Nigel and Davey at the Dingle homestead, who took all the cash from the money pot. After Zak was readmitted back into hospital, Nigel and Davey informed Zak's wife Lisa that he initially borrowed £1,000 from them, but now owed £8,000 due to a rise in interest. The following day, Lisa was forced to ask her niece Charity for money, and Charity handed her £50. Nigel returned on his own to find Zak's daughter Belle watching television, and after Lisa arrived back home, she handed him another £50. The next day, Nigel and Davey returned to find Charity with Lisa. She gave the men a final offer of £2,000, which they accepted. Zak was finally discharged from hospital and returned to the village to find the two men waiting for him, where they told him that they wanted the full amount, giving him a 48-hour deadline. Zak headed out into the moors with a shovel, and began to dig for the cash he had buried out there. With no other option, Zak gave Nigel and Davey a call, telling them that he had the money, and met them the next day at a disused barn, where he revealed that he doesn't have the cash on him after all and was willing to accept the consequences. Unbeknownst to him, however, Belle, who had sensed there was something wrong with her father, stowed away in the van. Belle surreptitiously gave Lisa a call, who in turns, rang Charity. Belle leapt out, armed with the shovel, but Davey shoved her back inside the van. After Charity arrived, she threatened to tell the police that they hurt Belle. Belle's accusations stalled the men, and they began to back down, before Charity kneed Nigel in the groin.