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EastEnders Wiki

Richard Cole (also known as Tricky Dicky), was the market inspector of Bridge Street Market and made his first appearance on 23 July 1992. He was portrayed by Ian Reddington.


Richard Cole arrives in Walford in 1992 as the new market inspector. He is known as a corrupt man who will pull every trick in the book to make money and he is not well liked by the community.

He is also a notorious womaniser who has various brief flings. He briefly dates market trader Rachel Kominski. In March 1993, Richard's friend Sanjay Kapoor and his wife Gita Kapoor moved into Albert Square and Richard gives Sanjay a permanent market pitch which antagonises Rachel.

Later in 1993, he sleeps with 17-year-old Bianca Jackson and when he dumps her shortly after, she and her friend Natalie Price vandalise his flat.

Richard later has a longer lasting romance with Kathy Beale. This sours when she discovers that he is taking a cash bribe and allowing a mobile hot dog van to trade in direct competition to her café. Richard then spread vicious rumours about Kathy, who had started seeing Phil Mitchell. Richard branded Kathy a 'slut' and was dating a man who had one brain cell shared between him and his brother Grant Mitchell. Phil frogmarched Tricky into the toilets and shook him about until Grant broke it up.

Richard makes various enemies including: Alan Jackson, who he reports for benefit fraud; Arthur Fowler, whom he causes to lose his job as market sweeper and lovers Mandy Salter and Aidan Brosnan. Richard buys a property to let out for rent. Mandy and Aidan are squatting in one of the bedsits at the time and Richard evicts them, leaving Aidan homeless and suicidal over Christmas 1993. However, Richard's main rival is Kathy's son Ian Beale. Richard relishes winding up Ian by flirting with Ian's wife Cindy Beale. Richard spreads rumours about having an affair with Cindy, implying that he is the father of Cindy's unborn twins, which causes various problems in the Beale marriage for a while. Richard even evicted Big Ron from his stall and was forced to give it back.

In March 1994, Richard let it slip to the police that Frank Butcher was virtually bankrupt which led the police to further pursue their investigation into Frank's involvement in the car lot arson. Phil and Grant had a word with Richard, telling him that you don't 'grass on mates'. When Richard started being cocky, Grant got aggressive with him but was interrupted by Sharon Mitchell. The Mitchells give Richard a warning.

Later, Richard orchestrates the closure of Ian's catering business, The Meal Machine, by reporting him to environmental health. In July 1994, Phil hit rock bottom due to accidentally killing a vagrant in the car lot fire. Richard started spreading rumours that Phil was not satisfying Kathy enough, unlike what he did. One time Richard insulted Kathy and when Ian intervened Richard hit him. Ian vowed revenge.

Ian pretended he was into photography so asked Richard to pose for a photo. The photo was proof that Ian needed to show to Richard's former colleague Neil Bradley and to expose Richard's previous crime from several years ago. In the past, Richard had been a former planning officer for the council in Doncaster and soon befriended Neil when they teamed up to engage in monetary bribes, but then Richard betrayed Bradley after they were caught by implicating him as the perpetuator - causing Neil to be imprisoned whereas Richard got away with it.

Ian then gathered his friends and family around to show Richard up in the market. Ian said to Richard that he knows about his dodgy past with the council and stitching someone up. Richard tries to deny any knowledge of it. Ian then posted a letter to Neil. As Richard tried to stop him, Alan restrained him. Later on that night, Richard asks Sanjay to stay in the flat and look after the rest of the properties. He has handed in his resignation as market inspector. Richard then drives off into the night, leaving Walford or good. Soon Neil arrived and he was unhappy to find out that Richard had gone - he then left himself to find Richard, vowing to kill him for what he did to him in the past.

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