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We can either do this the easy way, or I beat the truth out of Lady Penelope upstairs.
~ Cain to Graham Foster after Ross accidentally shot Debbie during a scuffle with Joe.

Cain Dingle is a fictional character and recurring anti-hero-turned-central protagonist of the British soap opera Emmerdale.

In his first stint, he served as one of the show's central antagonists from March 2000 to September 2006. He then returned in April 2009 for his second stint and served as a protagonist villain throughout 2009-2012 up until the climax of his own titular storyline "Who Attacked Cain Dingle?". Since then his villainy has toned down and the character has become one of the show's central protagonists.

He is portrayed by Jeff Hordley.


Cain Dingle is a master criminal and the bad boy of the village. He's been involved in many scams (mostly involving money) and been to jail on more than one occasion, however, he's not evil to the core and has developed a conscience in recent years but still portrays evil in Emmerdale. Despite his difficult relationship with his daughter Debbie, he would do anything for her.



Cain Dingle first came to Emmerdale in March 3000 for the funeral of his half-brother Butch. Thereafter he became sworn enemies with his family's arch-rival Chris Tate, blaming him for Butch's death after it had transpired that the lorry which killed Butch in the Bus Crash was owed by Chris. Later on when Chris neglected responsability over the fact that his company Tata Haulege is guilty for faults over their lorry service, a fight broke up in the village - during which Cain punched Chris and swore revenge on him. He soon clashes with his supposed uncle Zak when they argue about how to get back at Chris. Later on, Cain is shocked when Zak makes a revelation to him - that Zak is actually Cain's father, whereas Cain's supposed father Shadarach is really his uncle.

Soon enough, Cain set out to terrorize another family: The Reynolds. This was because family member Sean Reynolds is Chris' business partner, and that Cain also resented Sean's wife Angie for not doing enough to help rescue Butch from the Bus Crash. It is then Cain put his revenge campaign into motion when he seduced Angie, a policewoman, and the two embarked on an affair behind Sean's back. But when Angie chose to end the affair, Cain proceeded to seduce her wayward daughter Ollie by tricking her into believing he cares for her - when in reality Cain is merely using Ollie to get back at her mother.

Things get out of control when Angie's father-in-law, Len, discovered what Cain was doing; in response, Cain pushed Len down a flight of stairs. Len was consequently hospilatized, but recovered as Ollie comes to see Cain's true colors and blames herself for what has happened. Cain eventually reveals the truth to the Reynolds, thus exposing his affair with Angie and grooming Ollie as well to a horrified Sean. This soon provokes Sean into attacking Cain in public. However, Cain planned this to get Sean arrested for assault. He later gets Angie fired from her job by exposing her affair to her superior, including the fact that she slept with him during her police routines and that she also punched Chris' other business partner Lady Tara Thornfield.

Although Cain had gotten revenge on the Reynolds family, however, it soon became clear to him and Angie that they are still passionate about each other. They seemingly reconcile when Cain claims to Angie that Chris, being Sean's employer, is squarely to blame for everything that has happened between them. He then convinces Angie to help him get ultimate payback on Chris by stealing one of his company's trucks. On the night they do so, however, Angie sets up Cain by attempting to have him arrested. Cain flees in the truck as Angie and her colleague Adrien Collins give chase. The chase ends tragically when Cain stops to hide, but in doing so causes Angie and Collins to crash their police car - the result of which kills Collins and fatally injures Angie. Horrified, Cain pulls Angie from the wreckage and begs her to tell him that she loves him; Angie, though, instead professes her love for her children before she sccumbs to her injuries and dies in Cain's arms. Cain is left guilt-ridden for his role in Angie's death, as well as seeing both Ollie and her brother Marc react to their mother's death.

During this time, Cain learns that his cousin Charity has embarked on a relationship with Chris. He soon attacks her, so Chris has him arrested before Cain then reveals Charity's romantic chemistry with Chris to the rest of the Dingles. Cain continues to square off against Charity after she marries Chris against her family's reservations. In 2003, however, Cain and Charity learn that they have a daughter named Debbie - who was concieved from an incestuous fling that Cain and Charity had in the past. Debbie is initially fostered by Butch's widow Emily and her new husband Paddy Kir, but soon she spends more time with Cain and Charity after finding out that they are her biological parents.

Despite being a career criminal and ruthless hardman, Cain has grown to love Debbie. This especially happens when they convince Charity to go on a trip with them, as Cain then attempts to convince Charity to leave Chris in order to have a "family life" with her cousin and their daughter instead. Soon enough Charity cheats on her husband with Cain and they have an affair. A love triangle erupts as Charity finds her efforts to choose Chris over Cain becoming sidetracked by her passion for Cain. So much so that Chris' right-hand man, Terry Woods, learns the truth and informs Chris about this; Chris reacts by wanting to divorce Charity and then have her killed along with Cain.

But then Chris learns that he has an inoperable and terminal brain tumor, so instead he sets out to get revenge on Charity by framing her for his murder. In the meantime, Cain plans to kill Chris as their feud reaches boiling point. Cain is also preparing to kill Charity as she continues to choose Chris over him. Later on when Cain goes to kill the broken couple, however, he arrives to find that Chris is dead and that Charity is in hysterics. Fearing that he would be blamed for Chris' death and unable to convince Charity to leave with him, Cain flees the village with Debbie just as the police arrive; Charity is later arrested and charged for Chris' death. Chris' sister, Zoe, plans to ensure that she gets sent down whereas the Dingles plan to exonerate her; Cain eventually came back and was cleared of all charges while his and Charity’s love grew stronger as she faced life in prison.

After Charity's conviction for Chris' murder is quashed, Cain is angry when she proceeds to turn her attention on another wealthy businessman - Tom King. Later on Cain is approached by Tom's daughter-in-law, Sadie, and she hires him to make Tom believe that Charity is being unfaithful. He wasn’t of course – Charity really did care for Tom – but he set her up and it worked; Tom threw her out. Never one to let sleeping dogs lie herself, Charity took revenge on Sadie by sleeping with her husband Jimmy, also Tom's eldest son. She also got Jimmy to confess to his part in the plot in the hope that Tom would take her back when he knew the truth. A furious Tom expelled Sadie and Jimmy from the King family and Cain was similarly banished from the Dingle homestead. Charity left the village shortly after. Sadie and Cain end up in bed; when she rejects him, he kills her beloved dog Damon.

Cain and Debbie move in to Butler's Farm with Andy Sugden. Thereafter Debbie and Andy quietly got closer and began a relationship of their own which was to result in baby Sarah. She kept the pregnancy a secret but when it all came out – no pun intended – Cain immediately bonded with his granddaughter and lavished love on her. However, all his best efforts to become a good family man were wasted on Debbie who rejected her daughter from the beginning. He kept on trying and desperate for an end to the situation, Debbie begged Emily to leave the village and take the baby with her. The lonely Emily happily agreed and slipped away with Sarah but when the Dingles found out, they were furious. Cain was beside himself and vowed to find his granddaughter and bring her home however he couldn't find Emily and Sarah so he returned to the village harboring a simmering hatred for Debbie for giving away the child. He was intent on making Debbie pay for what she’d done and set about making her life hell. Things got so bad between them all that Debbie ended up moving out and went to live with Ashley Thomas and his niece Jasmine who became very close friends. Seeing this, Cain realized that he could hurt Debbie by using Jasmine so he began a charm offensive on the impressionable young girl. He slept with Jasmine and arranged things so that Debbie would walk in on them. Hurt, Debbie vowed to get her own back on Cain, no matter how long that might take.

Meanwhile, Sadie paid Cain to sabotage the King’s new show home that was to house Cain's cousin Marlon and his wife Donna by driving a JCB into it but, while he did as she asked, she refused to sleep with him, making the passionate Cain furious. When Sadie confronts him, Cain threatens to tell Matthew as well so Sadie tells Ashley that Cain got Jasmine pregnant so the Dingles throw him out and allow Debbie to return. In his fury, he told Jimmy that Sadie had arranged the show home devastation. At the time, Sadie was having an affair with Jimmy’s brother Matthew and Cain threatened to tell Matthew that he and Sadie were sleeping together. Sadie retaliated by telling Ashley that Cain had been sleeping with Jasmine which resulted in the Dingles once again evicting Cain and allowing Debbie to move back in. Defeated all round, Cain left the village for a while but was soon back when he found out the Jasmine was pregnant. He was delighted at the thought of being a father but Debbie persuaded the confused Jasmine to have an abortion which Sadie – who was chuffed to have a chance to destroy Cain’s dreams of fatherhood – paid for. On the day the abortion was to take place, Cain searched frantically for Jasmine and Debbie but by the time he found them, the deed was done and Cain was devastated but Debbie was pleased to twist the knife and she let it be known that she’d promised revenge on Cain and she’d now got it. In the meantime, the King’s plans for the new houses in the village forged ahead but what they didn’t know is that when Cain crashed into the show house, he’d fractured a gas pipe causing a dangerous build up of gas. Despite Jimmy's temporary repair, on the day of the grand opening – which most of the village attended – a spark ignited the gas, causing a huge explosion and sending the house toppling to the ground, brick by brick, and left young mum Dawn Woods – Terry’s wife and Bob Hope’s daughter – dead, as well as villager Noreen Bell and estate agent David Brown. Cain found out about the explosion and was wracked with guilt, unlike Sadie who didn’t give a stuff.

A few weeks later, Cain's brother Sam helps his cancer-stricken wife Alice to die and was to be charged with her murder, so Cain accepts responsibility for Alice's death. Cain couldn’t bear the thought of another motherless child suffering as Dawn’s son had because of his actions. His taking the blame for the death of Alice – which saved Sam – made him the new Dingle family hero, and even the embittered Debbie was impressed. Sadie showed a partially human side by anonymously paying his bail. At Alice’s funeral, Sadie once again recruited Cain into helping her get back at Tom and Matthew King; she told Cain that they could both get rich by kidnapping Tom and demanding a ransom. However, Sadie’s plan didn’t go as expected because Debbie revealed to Cain that Sadie had paid for Jasmine’s abortion, which left him heartbroken and more vengeful than he’d ever been before. After a nasty and emotion fuelled confrontation with Sadie, Cain followed her to the pre-arranged meeting place and while Sadie and Tom discussed the house collapse, Cain emerged from the woods with a shotgun and kidnapped both Tom and Sadie. After hiding out in a barn for the night, Cain returned to the village and was quizzed by his sister Chas as to whether he’d had anything to do with Tom and Sadie’s disappearance. Cain denied any involvement but eventually, the police closed in on Cain so he ran with his hostages in tow. However, the police chased him to a nearby quarry where Cain diverted their attention by sending his empty car over cliff, making everyone believe Tom and Sadie were inside it. While the police were busy searching the quarry lake for their bodies, Cain attacked two police officers and disguised himself by wearing one of their uniforms. Later, after pretending to shoot Sadie, Cain made Tom call Chas to arrange delivery of the ransom money. When this was done, Cain fled following a tearful goodbye to Debbie who begged him to take her with him. Cain refused but later, he arranged for money to be posted to his daughter to help her set up a business. When Cain got to the airport – where Sadie was by now waiting for him – he left her stranded and vowed to change his life. Cain left a final message to Debbie on her voicemail telling her to ignore what everyone else said; he told her he wasn’t with Sadie and ended by telling Debbie he loved her.


Cain returns and offers to help Debbie get custody of Sarah

In February 2009, Cain was arrested on his return to the country after Andy reports him to the police. He was attempting to return to support and help Debbie, who was being held on remand for the murder of PC Shane Doyle just before Christmas. He hired a lawyer who specialized in self-defense cases to help Debbie, paying him in advance. Cain returned to the village on 28 April to help Debbie gain custody of Sarah. After finding her father in her house, they hug and immediately went up to Butler's Farm but not after Cain demanded to know what's been happening with the Kings and Debbie reveals that Tom got murdered on his wedding day and the business is starting to go down now that Jimmy and Carl are driving trucks for King and Sons after being bankrupt which costed them Home Farm. Cain was also surprised to hear that Matthew is dead after a car accident on his wedding day. Debbie told him that Andy was refusing her access to Sarah. He warns Andy that Debbie will get custody after giving Sarah a princess dress. Later that day, Cain sees Carl and Jimmy. They demanded their money back but Cain refused. Jimmy punches Cain in the stomach and Debbie attempts to break the fight but Cain backs her off and continues to taunt the Kings before Carl punches Cain. Jimmy and Carl beat him up and Cain does not fight back, much to Debbie's horror, however, Eli along with Marlon come to Cain's rescue and Jimmy drags Carl inside. Cain is pleased to be back in business.

He then began flirting with Andy's ex-girlfriend Maisie Wylde, whereas her family distrusted Cain for his notorious reputation. Cain then romanced with Faye Lamb, the ex-wife of Maisie's father Mark, but was unaware that she merely went out with him to make Mark jealous. Cain also took an instant dislike to Michael - Debbie's new boyfriend but they didn't care. Cain was proved right when Michael admitted that he was getting married in a few days to his pregnant fiancée. In love with Michael, Cain and Debbie crashed the wedding and were shocked to discover that his fiancée was Charity. Michael called the wedding off, after discovering that Charity had lied about being pregnant. Cain warned Debbie not to have anything to do with Charity but on discovering that she and her young son, Noah, were homeless, invited them to stay with her. Charity took her up on it and moved in but took some persuasion to stay. She and Carl planned to rob Cain of his money but Cain realized and went after her. He and Debbie caught Charity in the act and refused to believe her when she said she was replacing it. Cain also threw her and Noah out so she moved in with Marlon. He also gave her the money she had been about to steal and after Debbie's reassurance that they were okay, left the village. He returned on 22 December bearing presents for Debbie and Sarah. He was still angry with Charity, but they reconciled on Christmas Day after he agreed to marry her when she proposed.

Cain is taken back when he learns that Shadrach has died. Although Cain had never appreciated Shadrach it was clear that he felt a lot of grief over his loss. Cain finds Mark's wallet in the woods after Mark was killed by his wife Natasha at the start of the year, and blackmails her and her son Nathan as he thinks there is something sinister behind Mark's disappearance, however when Sam's dog, Alfie, digs up the body and Nathan frames his half-brother and Cain's employee, Ryan Lamb, for Mark's murder, and Ryan is convicted. Cain tells Maisie that Nathan and Natasha paid him to keep quiet and he cannot help Ryan without incriminating himself for fraud and blackmail. After seeing Nathan lie in the witness box, Cain kidnaps him to keep Sam quiet about the wallet. He holds him hostage in an abandoned barn, which is uncalled for, threatening to kill him if Ryan is found guilty. When Maisie learns what her mother and brother did, she calls the police and telling them her mother killed her father. Cain should have been arrested and should have spent time in prison for kidnapping Nathan.


In April 2011, Cain is on the rebound after Charity refuses to forgive him for cheating with Faye, and sleeps with Amy Wyatt. When he rejects her, she tells him she is pregnant with his child. He coerces her into agreeing to an abortion but her pregnancy is too far advanced. However, Amy too scared of what Cain will do, so Amy tells him and Victoria Sugden that she had the abortion. Moria decides to purchase a Land Rover from Cain and agrees to pay him the money in weekly installments. Moira asks Cain to keep the arrangement from her husband John, as their marriage is under a lot of strain and is quite fragile at that moment. Cain tells John about the arrangement and Moira goes to see Cain where they fight. Moira kisses Cain and they have sex. Moira regrets this instantly but they soon begin an affair Moira pleads with Cain not to tell John, however Cain reveals the affair by taunting John about Moira's birth mark on her thigh leading to Moira and John to split up.

Cain dislikes Jai Sharma so when Jai's sister Priya shows an interest in him, Cain uses this to his advantage. Jai accuses Cain of stealing from his parents' house and causing their father's road accident. Cain sends Jai a photo of Priya asleep nude and persuades her to call the police for assaulting her. Meanwhile, Amy gives birth to Cain's son, Kyle, in a cemetery; thinking he is dead, she panics and leaves him in a phone box. Hazel Rhodes and Lisa Dingle find him, and call an ambulance. Amy admits to being his mother, and Cain realizes she lied about the abortion. Priya forgives Cain until she learns he is the father of Amy's baby and slept with Moira. Cain is arrested when Jai reports his threats to the police but Cain is released with a caution. When Cain enters the Woolpack, he begins taunting John and when Chas refuses to serve him, he eyeballs each customer, insulting them one by one. Debbie throws him out after finding about Amy. Cain confronts John, Moira, Chas and Amy before leaving the village. As Cain walks along the outskirts of the village, he stops and zips up his coat. Cain hears footsteps behind him but before he turns, he is struck hard on the back of the legs with a metal object and falls to the ground. Through his pain, he clearly recognizes his attacker and is severely hit over the head. Debbie's boyfriend Cameron Murray later finds Jai standing over a badly injured Cain and calls an ambulance. Cain is rushed to hospital, Jai and Charity are arrested and questioned by the police. John is also arrested when Moira reveals to one of the investigating officers how John hurt his hand. While John is arrested, Cain takes a turn for the worse where it is discovered that he has a clot on the brain and needs urgent surgery, which goes well. Cain ultimately recovers, claiming that Jai attacked him. Amy visits Cain and while he is sleeping, she tells him she might keep her baby. She is unaware that he has heard everything. Zak later admits that he was responsible and Cain tells the police that a man he knew from Spain attacked him.


Cain spends the next few months recovering from his attack. He saves Holly Barton's life when she relapses on heroin. Even though he is still weak, Cain is able to drag Holly into his car and take her to hospital. Angry that Cain was the one who saved Holly and still upset about his father's death, Holly's brother Adam confronts Cain at the garage and demands an apology for what Cain has done to his family but Cain refuses. Adam then sets the garage on fire, trapping Cain inside and leaves Cain to die. Racked with guilt, Adam comes back and saves him. Adam confides in his best friend Aaron that he was the one who set fire to the garage. Seeing Adam's pain at the grieving of John, Aaron tells the police he started the fire and is able to persuade Cain into to lying to police and saying Aaron set the fire. Cain then helps Aaron flee the police by getting a fake passport for him. Moira and Cain decide to get together and on New Year's Day 2013, they announce their relationship by kissing in the Woolpack. In April, Moira learns that she is pregnant with Cain's baby but she soon miscarries. Despite this, their relationship gets stronger and Cain moves in with Moira and Adam, who adjusts to the situation.

Cain notices that Cameron is staring to act suspicious and vows to find out what is happening. He does not know that Cameron is having an affair with his sister Chas. Cameron and Chas end their affair but Cain is still distrustful until Cameron claims he is only acting suspicious as he is planning to propose to Debbie. Cain, still doubtful tells Chas that when he finds out what Cameron is up to he will kill him and the slag he catches him with. Debbie gives birth to baby Jack and Cain is chocked with pride as he watches his grandson being born and is happy when he finds out that Jack is a match for Sarah and that Sarah will survive. Cain feels furious and betrayed when he finds out about Chas and Cameron's affair. When they try to flee he smashes the car window and drags Cameron out the car. He is then arrested along with Charity after he makes a series of threats to Cameron. He is released without caution shortly afterwards.

After Moira has a steamy with Adam's best friend Alex Moss, Cain makes a deal with Moira that if Alex works at the garage then Zak can have Alex's old job at the farm. Moira sees Cain's vulnerable side and the couple begin seeing each other in late 2012. On New Years Eve they announce their relationship by kissing in the Woolpack. Adam disapproves of the relationship and starts giving Moira grief about it. Chas is released from prison and Moira encourages Cain to make amends with her however he feels that if he does he will be betraying Debbie.

In February, Cameron returns from Jersey and proposes to Chas. Cain is shocked at this and threatens Chas, telling her she should leave the village. Shortly after, Cameron arrived at the garage and the two men were involved in a brawl. Chas tried to break up the fight between her brother and fiancée, but was knocked to the ground. Cain stopped to check she was OK, but an enraged Cameron appears behind Cain, armed with a wrench, ready to strike. However, Cameron backs down.

Debbie becomes uncontrollable after the engagement and starts to do lots of dodgy business deals and Cain constantly has to protect her. Angry at the danger she is putting Sarah in, Cain and Debbie relationship becomes hostile. Cain makes amendments with Chas. In April, Moira learns that she is pregnant with Cain's baby but she soon miscarries. Cain and Debbie have an argument, and Cain makes it clear that he holds her responsible for Moira's miscarriage. He then leaves Tug Ghyll and goes to live with Moira at Butler's Farm.

Adam, still angry at Cain and Moira's relationship, tries to set Cain up. He notices a bit of flirtation between a Cain and a girl called Natalie. Adam sets up a party and pays Natalie to sleep with Cain. Cain realizes what Adam is up to and pushes Adam against a wall and threatens him. The following day Adam finds out about Moira's miscarriage and tells Cain he's glad Moira lost the baby. Cain then punches him, but is stopped by Zak before things escalate. Adam then shows his mum his black eye and tries to persuade Moira to leave Cain. She sides with Cain and Adam leaves the farm.

With Moira and Adam still at odds, Cain dishes Adam a few home truths. Meanwhile, Robbie Lawson steals Cain’s car keys and concocted a plan where he and Adam can come out on top and get some money. Fueled by drink, Adam and Robbie accidentally run over a pregnant Kerry Wyatt. Scared, they drive off leaving an injured Kerry alone in the road. Cain reports his car missing while Moira later finds the dented car with blood stains on it. Disturbed and disgusted, Moira blames Cain. Later Adam returns home and asks for Cain’s help and tells him what's happened. Cain hatches a plan and sets fire to the car, destroying the evidence. Moira learns that Kerry was knocked down by a car and chucks Cain out, believing him to be responsible. She invites Adam to stay back with her, telling Adam that he was right about Cain all along. Adam agrees and does not tell his mother it was actually him. Adam eventually admits he ran over Kerry, and Cain and Moira reunite. Cain helps Marlon trace down Laurel Thomas's carjacker after Laurel goes after him with a pair of scissors. They manage to get there in time as Ross is about to attack Laurel again.

Cain repairs his strained relationship with Debbie after his cousin's Gennie's death. Cain begins to notice Cameron is hanging around Debbie and asks Debbie if she is seeing him again; Debbie firmly denies this and Cain is satisfied when Debbie publicly tells Cameron to leave her alone. In Gennie's funeral Chas realizes that Cameron and Debbie are seeing each other again. Struggling to contain her emotion Chas runs out the church whilst giving a speech about Gennie. Cain runs after her and demands to know what Cameron has done - she replies he did Debbie. Fuming, Cain punches Cameron at Gennie's wake and Debbie and Cameron reveal that they are now a couple.

Cameron comes to live with Debbie but while he is moving his stuff into the house, Cain taunts him. Cameron taunts him back, leading to Cain knocking him unconscious and dragging him into his car. Debbie witnesses this and tries to stop Cain, however Cain drives off. Desperate to know where Cain is taking Cameron, Debbie starts shouting at Charity and Chas, demanding to know where he is. Charity reveals that he might be at the quarry as that was where she and Cain once planned to kill Cameron and fake his suicide. Debbie rushes to her car and drives to the quarry. She finds a tied and gagged Cameron locked in the back of the car while Cain wipes his fingerprints of the steering wheel. Debbie begs Cain to stop but Cain ignores her and proceeds to push the car off the cliff. Unable to physically stop him, Debbie stands in front of the car. Cain demands Debbie to move however she does not, saying he will have to push her off as well. Cameron pleads with Debbie to move, knowing that the ground underneath is crumbling and it is unsafe. Debbie does not resent and Cain emotionally says that she is choosing Cameron over her family to which Debbie replies please don't make me choose. Cameron shouts at Cain to let him go and Cain does so. Cameron then punches Cain but Debbie stops him from doing more. Cain agrees to be civil but warns Cameron that he'll be watching him.

In September 2013, Debbie finds Gennie's Dictaphone and realizes Cameron murdered Gennie. She tells Chas who takes her to the police. With not enough evidence to charge, the police bug Debbie's house wanting to tape Cameron's confession. Cain starts to get suspicious of Debbie's behavior and demands to know the truth. He is shocked and horrified when he hears of Cameron's murders and is worried for Debbie's safety. However he supports her with her plan. Cain watches with the police as Debbie is wired and sent into her house with Cameron. Cain gets agitated as he watches it unfold and tries to intervene. Cameron confesses and Debbie shouts the code word, alerting Cameron who locks them in the house together. Cain gets arrested as he tries to get into the house to save Debbie. The Dingles watch as Charity complains at Cain and Chas for not telling her about Cameron sooner. Debbie escapes and has an emotional embrace with Cain before he is taken to the cells for a night while Cameron is arrested for the murders of Carl, Alex and Gennie.

With Declan Macey demanding a great sum of money from Moira, Moira fears she to pay it off she will have to sell Butler's Farm. Cain decides to take matters into his own hands and asks Charity for some help. They return to their old scams by stealing a car again. However Cain has to help Charity as she is nearly caught by her husband Jai. The money buys Moira and Cain some time. Adam encourages Cain to raise the money however Moira wants Cain to do it legally. Cain swallows his pride by asking Jai to invest in a business investment however Jai refuses. During an heated argument Cain suggests he should marry Moira however they decide to ignore it. Cain then reverts back to his old ways, calling an old acquaintance called Marcus. Marcus asks Cain to help with a drug raid, however Cain is disgusted with what Marcus is planning. After receiving a call from Moira, declaring her love for him, Cain backs down and ropes Ross Barton into the task, unsure of his true identity. The same night Cain proposes to Moira however before Moira can answer, Ross barges in with a gun shot wound.

Covered with blood after being shot, he blackmailed Cain into helping him by threatening to tell Moira about the job whilst she was out of the room. Moira wanted to call an ambulance but Cain and Ross insisted that she couldn't otherwise they would both be arrested. Instead, they had Vanessa Woodfield assist to the wound. Cain tried to force Ross to leave at the earliest opportunity but Moira soon realized that Ross was the son of James Barton, John's brother, and therefore her nephew, whom she had not seen for around twenty years after James and John fell out. Moira allowed Ross to stay at Butler's Farm until he recovered, leaving Cain feeling uneasy. Cain tried to convince Moira to get Ross to leave, but feeling sorry for Ross she wanted him to stay for a couple more days. Cain then informed Moira that Ross was Laurel's carjacker, leading to Moira to also want to get rid of him, but she was forced to reconsider when Vanessa insisted he need a few more days of rest. Moira later finds out that it was initially Cain's job however forgives him.

After originally turning down Ross' offer of stealing Declan's car Cain relents after seeing how sad Moira is about having to sell the farm. At Declan's party, Cain hatches up a plan for Ross to dress up as valet and then pass the cars onto Cain, who later sells them on. After managing to sell Declan's car Ross gives part of his share to Cain in order for Moira to keep the farm. Ross leaves the village while Cain goes to pay Declan. Realizing Cain stole the cars, Declan initially refuses to take the money however after Megan states how desperate they are for money, Declan takes the money and Moira is able to keep the farm.

The couple get engaged and, with assistance from Chas in wedding preparations, Cain and Moira set a date for 15 May 2014. They get married successfully, although James gets drunk at their reception. Charity gets married the same day to Declan.

In December 2014, Cain returns home from a business trip to France with bad pain in his head. He ignores it for a week, at which point he collapses and is found by Charity, who takes him to a hospital. Cain is told he had a brain aneurysm stemming from his attack in 2011 and needs an operation immediately but leaves the hospital without having had the operation. Returning to the village, he walks by the river but falls in after a dizzy spell. He is found by Vanessa Woodfield and Kirin Kotecha while they were out walking. Eventually, Cain recovers from his condition but is aware that the aneurysm will still exist inside his brain. Cain saves his half-sister, Belle Dingle after she tries to kill herself, and she is diagnosed with possibly Schizophrenia, following recent events which led to the teenager killing her best friend a year previously. Since Belle's diagnosis, Cain was supportive of his sister.

In June 2015, Cain and Moira discover that Charity was pregnant when she was sentenced to prison and the baby, Moses Dingle, could possibly be Cain's. Cain visits Charity in prison and questions if he is the father of her child. It is later revealed that Ross Barton is Moses's father, following a one-night stand with Charity. Cain soon finds out that Ross and Debbie have been having an affair and to stop Debbie from running away with Ross, he tells her that Ross is Moses's father. Debbie's wedding day approaches and Cain threatens Ross and warns him to leave Debbie alone. Debbie marries Pete Barton, but her affair with Ross is discovered on a recorded confession which Ross made on his mobile phone during a conversation with Debbie. Just as everyone finds out, a helicopter comes crashing through the roof of the Village Hall, leaving everyone's lives at risk. Cain and Pete carry Debbie out of the Village Hall, as she is discovered under some debris and therefore begins to fight for her life, due to serious injuries following the crash. But, Cain realises that Kyle is trapped in the debris, and goes in to rescue him, but Kyle hides from him. Cain manages to convince him to come out. Kyle eventually comes out, and Cain rescues him, just before the entire village hall collapses.

In October 2015, Cain was stopped in his tracks by Zak when he tried to kill Robert Sugden in his hospital bed who had recently been shot for which Aaron had got the blame and was in prison awaiting trial. Zak appeals to his son and tells him he is a good man and that he will find another way to help Aaron. Robert eventually regains consciousness and having learnt the truth about the shooting from his brother Andy, gets Aaron released. Also during this time, Cain supports Chas (who witnessed Robert's shooting and is suffering from PTSD as a result).

In February 2016, Cain was devastated to learn that Aaron was raped by his father, Gordon Livesy when he was a child. After Chas told him about Aaron's abuse, Cain drove to Gordon's house when he plans revenge on Gordon for what he did to Aaron. The next day, Cain goes to Gordon's house and punches Gordon when he returns. Cain ties him up and forces Gordon to drink vodka and take Chas' sleeping pills to make it look like he was trying to take his own life. Gordon riles Cain up so much that he picks up a chair intending to beat Gordon with it, but Aaron and Chas arrive in the nick of time to stop him. Aaron informs Cain that he wants to deal with this his way by calling the police on his father. As Aaron is giving his statement, Cain, instructed by Chas, has told the rest of the Dingles, Moira, Paddy and Adam about Aaron. When he is being questioned, Gordon tells the police that Cain tried to make him take his own life. The police arrive at Butlers to question Cain, but Chas and Moira give him an alibi.

Despite Cain's newfound role as protector of the Dingle name, due to Zak's ex-communication, Chas criticises him, citing that he hasn't bothered even glancing at Aaron since finding out he was abused and is ashamed of him. Cain tells her that this is utter rubbish and that he still loves Aaron, the problem being that whenever he looks at him, it reminds him "of what a sick, perverted man Gordon is". Alongside this newfound fatherly duty, Cain also tries to protect Debbie from long term lover (and Moria's nephew) Ross after she leaves the village and he will stop at no lengths to get in contact with her. Cain also supports Lisa as she celebrates turning 60 by divorcing Zak. However, Cain later tries being civil with his estranged father due to his troubles with Chas. Cain was in the pub when Chas accidentally reveals to everybody in the pub that Gordon abused Aaron when he was a child. After the police tell Aaron that they can't get Sandra to back Aaron up, Cain goes to the scrapyard and finds Aaron taking his frustrations out on a car. Cain tells Aaron that he loves him and wants to see Gordon face justice but not at the cost of what it is doing to Aaron, so persuades him to drop the case. Back at the Woolpack Cain is present when the police tell Aaron that another of Gordon's victims has come forward.

In April 2016, Gordon stands trial for his crimes. Cain supports Aaron and Chas through the court case which sees Gordon found guilty and sentenced to 18 years in prison. A few weeks later, Cain celebrates with the rest of the family when Aaron receives his deed poll letter confirming him an official Dingle. However, the party is interrupted by the arrival of DS Wise who informs Aaron and Liv that Gordon was found dead in his cell. Cain initially believes Robert had him killed due to his money and connections but they are informed that Gordon took his own life.

In June 2016, Cain, while in The Woolpack, sees photos from Lachlan White's spy machine that Jermaine Bailey has been having an affair with Cain's little sister, Belle. Lachlan sent the photos to Cain's phone. Cain breaks into Jermaine's office at the GP surgery and shows the photo to Angie who is Jermaine's wife. Belle starts a massive row, but Angie threatens them to get out or she was going to phone the police.

In July 2016, After Holly relapses and becomes addicted to drugs again Moira confronts her drug dealer but falls onto a used needle causing her to believe she has contracted HIV. With Moira's help, Holly becomes clean, however, Cain is disgusted when he finds out Holly caused Moira to become contracted with HIV after he finds Moira's tablets. After that Cain walked out he tried to run James off the road the day after he walked out on Moira and snogged Charity at The Woolpack then after he moved in with Lisa and Belle at Wishing Well Cottage and after Moira ordered a divorce. Cain saved Charity's life when she tried to find Belle after she went missing following a mental breakdown, she ended up with broken ribs after a run-in with Holly's ex-boyfriend/drug dealer Dean, back at the garage Cain and Charity kissed then slept together. The following day Cain stood up for Charity in front of Zak and Lisa then called Charity back to the garage where he pulled her in for a kiss and they then had sex. The day after that Cain said that was another on-off Charity quoted 'You'll be sending me dirty emojis before they days out' they had sex again in a car but Holly knocked on the garage door, they got rid of Holly, after fetching him and Charity drinks she joked 'Same time tomorrow?'

In September 2016, Holly tentatively approached Cain and implored him to try and make things work with Moira but he told her to mind her own business. The next day, Cain was devastated when Adam informed him that Holly had been found dead in her bed from a heroin overdose. He went to Butlers and comforted a heartbroken Moira. Two weeks later, Holly's funeral took place. Cain watched from a distance and then later visited Holly's grave alone where he succumbed to his grief and cried for his stepdaughter.

In October 2016, Cain and Charity decided to start a new life together in France with Debbie. They made their goodbyes to the family but while on the road, Cain suddenly realised he couldn't go through with it. He told a distraught and heartbroken Charity that he loves Moira and gave her the keys to his car and headed back to the village alone. Cain went to Butlers and told Moira that he wants to be with her and he will do everything he can to make it right with her.

In December 2016, Cain takes the blame when Moira accidentally knocks Pete down after a heavy drinking session but is devastated when his ex-wife admits to having a one-night stand with her nephew. After an intense and bitter row, Moira tells Cain she needs him and they sleep together.

In January 2017, Cain grows frustrated with Kyle and almost hits him. He is ashamed of his actions as it reminds him of how Shadrach used to treat him when he was younger. He tells Zak, Lisa and Kerry to look after Kyle, believing he's better off without him. Cain is shocked when Debbie returns from France after going on the run from her boss. Two of his henchmen turn up and kidnap Jack and Sarah, demanding the money she stole. With the help of Ross and Charity, they get the money and the children are safely returned. Cain is later devastated when Debbie reveals Sarah has cancer. The Dingles are shocked when Lisa tells them that Joanie suffered a fatal heart attack after being released from prison. Cain is the one who breaks the news to Kyle and sets about mending his relationship with his young son. In February, Cain is shocked and angry when his estranged mother Faith turns up in the village but soon softens when she claims to have donated the anonymous £20,000 to Sarah's fundraiser and offers to pay for her lodgings at the B&B despite Chas' disapproval. Cain is upset when Kerry informs him that because of Faith's interference, Kyle has been taken into care. However, Zak and Lisa soon speak to the social worker and Cain is delighted when his son is returned to him.

In March 2017, he falls for vicar Harriet Finch after she catches him stashing stolen phones in her church. She threatens to call him in to the police, however, she then ends up helping him by lying to the police and helping him drive away from a crime scene. The pair then end up kissing passionately in the church. However, after catching him a second time, Harriet then calls him into the police where Cain threatened that he also dragged her into it. Terrified, Harriet goes to turn herself in but Cain stops her. He tells her he'd never do anything that like to her and that he's grateful she helped him. They then kiss passionately and end up sleeping together. This was the start of a sneaky and dangerous affair.

In June 2017, Cain and Harriet's affair was then made public and turned into a proper relationship after Harriet was stabbed and left fighting for her life, leaving Cain realizing how deep he felt for her. Cain helped her through her recovery process. In July 2017, Cain and Harriet are nearly caught having sex by the bishop after Debbie Dingle dobbed himself and Harriet in. Cain tries to disguise himself as a Catholic priest. However, when the bishop started slagging him off to Harriet, Cain couldn't help but lose it and revealing his true identity. He and Harriet then confront Debbie about it, she confesses and then starts bickering with Cain and Harriet.

In early October, Moira Dingle unexpectedly gives birth to Cains' son Isaac Dingle, leaving his relationship with Harriet on the rocks. Originally they are not sure who the father is but after Moira takes a DNA test she reveals Cain is his father. After a lot of thought, Harriet declares her love for Cain and selflessly tells him to be a family with Moira and his son. She leaves before Cain can say anything. A few weeks later, Cain overhears that Harriet is planning to move to Oxford to a brand new parish and so Cain and Moira can be together. He is shocked by the news and confronts Harriet, telling her he doesn't want her to go before passionately kissing her. Before the moment got too heated, Harriet pulled away and walked off.

In November, Harriet returns from Oxford and is greeted by Cain, who seems to think the pair are still together. Harriet has to remind him there is no 'us' anymore and that's why she left. Cain follows Harriet into the church where he tells Harriet he still thinks there's a future for them. Harriet is quick to shrug him off, but he demands it isn't Moira he needs, it's her. Harriet is taken aback but tells him he can't say that, before walking into the vestry. Cain follows her in and starts questioning her, she tries to ignore him but he grabs her and pulls her in for another passionate kiss. Both Cain and Harriet are taken away in the moment. Harriet reminds Cain she went away because he and Moira belong together and he's quick to respond, telling her that he belongs with her now. Harriet once again shrugs Cain off, he gets angry and storms off, leaving Harriet conflicted. A couple of days later, Harriet goes to visit Cain who is taking care of Isaac. She tells him she's worried about him as no one is looking out for him and people are only concerned about Moira. She demands she still cares about him as a friend, which prompts Cain to snap at her. Harriet is hurt and angry, and storms off. Harriet walks back into the pub a few hours later and Cain is quick to rush over to her. He apologizes, and when Harriet says if they can be mates, he tells her that isn't what he's thinking and kisses her. The pair are back on.

Harriet soon becomes jealous of the amount of time Cain has been spending with Moira. Their relationship hit a rocky patch over the Christmas period, as Harriet also found out it was Moira who killed Emma and that Cain has been lying to her. On 16th January 2018, Cain tells Moira he's a better man because of her and declares she's a beautiful, perfect, impossible woman and he loves her. Moira leans in for a kiss and soon she and Cain are getting passionate on the sofa. They spend the night together but the next morning Moira dismisses it as the heat of the moment. Cain tells Harriet he's finishing with her and she questions why but know it's to do with Moira. Furious Harriet blames Moira for her throwing away her life. Cain reminds Harriet that Moira did nothing to her, it was him who asked her to lie. Harriet accuses Cain of using her to protect Moira. Cain insists she's talking rubbish and spells it out to her that he doesn't love her like he loves Moira. Harriet is devastated Cain would give up what they had on the off chance of getting back with Moira. Putting on a brave face, Harriet labels Cain a "spineless, useless joke" before storming out but when she gets outside, she breaks down in tears.

In February 2018 Cain informs Moira that he and Harriet are over but she is apprehensive towards giving their relationship another shot. Cain helps redecorate Holly's old room, to make it a nursery for Isaac and while there, Moira overhears Faith telling Cain he belongs at the farm with Moira and his sons. However, Moira decides she's leaving the farm and leaving the village as she can't raise Isaac around all of the ghosts. Cain realises and is devastated. Cain returns to the farm where he begs Moira not to go, although Moira reiterates she can't be here right now. Cain informs Moira he'll be at the footbridge at 5pm - if she isn't there, he'll know she doesn't feel the same way about him as he does her. Moira tells him she won't be there so this is goodbye. Cain walks out. However, Charity manages to talk Moira out of leaving and Cain waits on the bridge as the church bells strike five o'clock. Moira appears a minute late. She tells Cain she loves him and they kiss.

In October 2018, Cain storms up to Joe and punches him to the ground after he learns he has left his daughter, Debbie at the altar. Joe hits his head off a rock and is knocked unconscious. Joe lays unconscious with blood dripping from his nose. Graham checks for a pulse but can't find one. He tells Cain that Joe is dead although Cain thinks it's a sick joke. Cain is in disbelief. He reminds Graham he only punched Joe once although Graham states once is all it takes. He orders Cain to get in his car and drive towards Hotten to create an alibi. Cain can't understand why Graham is doing this. Graham comments it saved him a job. Cain returns to Butlers Farm in a state. He struggles to digest what he's done and rejects a call from Debbie. A solemn Cain sits with Isaac as someone knocks at the door. Cain eventually answers the door - it's Graham and he wants to talk. Debbie heads back to the hospital and explains to an upset Sarah that Joe is gone. After putting Isaac down, Cain asks Graham how he knows he's taken care of this property as he can't have any of this come back on him. Graham states he said he'd take care of things and he meant it so he'll just have to trust him. Cain wants to know where Joe is but Graham suggests it's best he doesn't know. Cain grabs Graham by the lapels but Graham isn't intimidated so Cain lets him go then signals for him to leave.

In January 2019, Cain told Debbie that he killed Joe, which caused a downfall in their relationship. On 14th March 2019, Graham picks Kim up from prison and they drive back to Home Farm; however, the car slows down to a complete stop - forcing Graham to go out for help. While waiting, Kim flags down, Cain, when he comes across her. At first, Cain helps Kim, but the two end up in an argument after he learns who she is. When Graham informs Kim that Cain killed Joe, having falsely claimed to have done the job himself, Kim plans to implicate Cain for Joe's murder. Kim tries to get Cain on her side, but he refuses. Cain goes looking for him and after hearing his phone ring, underneath the soil, he fears that Kim has killed him and begins to dig, only to be caught by the police. Kim then threatens to get Cain imprisoned for Joe's murder if she doesn't do what she wants. Kim finally tells Cain that Joe isn't dead and tries blackmailing him into bed in exchange for her telling the police. Cain chases after Graham and fights him in a field until Moira runs in and breaks it up. Cain agrees to sleep with Kim but bails out at the last minute, enraging Kim. Graham phones Joe to say a final goodbye to him, but as Kim threatens to have him killed, he blackmailed her by saying he will tell Jamie if she doesn't leave Joe alone. Kim tries to contact Jamie but fails to. Debbie slaps Kim once she learns the truth about Joe. Cain assumed that the news would make Debbie forgive him but she remained hostile towards him as she was still upset at how he had handled things.

In May 2019, Cain supported his sister Belle after, Lisa passed away shortly after returning to the village from Scotland. Following Lisa's funeral, the family got personal letters from her which inspired Debbie and Cain to make up. However, in July, Cain disappears without and explanation upsetting Moira who tells him he can't just leave his sons. He then reveals he left as he found out Lisa had left a garage for Belle and Debbie in Scotland and had gone to try and sell it behind their backs, as they both belonged in the village and he didn't want to risk losing them. However, the new farmhand Nate Robinson, who disliked Cain, overheard and informed Debbie of what her father had been up to. Debbie was mad at her father but the two soon made up as Cain realised he can't make these decisions for her. Later, Cain was angered when Debbie informed him that she had decided, after some encouragement from Sarah, to move to the garage in Scottland with Jack. He was upset but came to the conclusion that he would rather have her far away than living down the road, not speaking to him. On 13th August, Cain sees her off as Debbie leaves the village. In late August, Cain went on a long visit to Scotland to help Debbie, unknowingly giving Moira the perfect opportunity to pursue her recently started affair with Nate.

Cain returns in late September 2019, and confronts Moira on her recent behaviour, as he starts noticing that something isn't right. She doesn't open up but Cain reassures her that he will find out. He grows more and more suspicious of Moira's behaviour. Faith later becomes involved and is convinced that Moira is having an affair with Pete, and tells Cain that who is furious. Cain manages to seduce Pete up to Butlers for revenge and knocks him unconscious and tied him up. Knowing that Cain wasn't going to back down without any answers, Pete finally exposes Moira and Nate's affair. Cain sets out for a day he will never forget as he goes in search for Nate.

The following day, Cain lures Moira and Nate into his car and takes them out on a boat. The realisation on the meaning behind Cain's boat trip comes to Nate when Cain admits he knows Moira's sleeping with somebody else. Cain pushes Nate too far beating around the bush, forcing him to come clean and brag about sleeping with Moira on many different occasions. Moira suddenly hears a loud bang from inside the boat and discovers Nate lying unconscious. Moira realises she has been caught out and that Cain knows about her and Nate. He forces her to come clean to him. She assures Cain that everything with Nate was physical with no emotion. He's rattled at her actions. Cain and Nate get into a fight and they tussle into a showdown, and Nate's intensions with Moira become clear once he unexpectedly calls Cain "dad". Nate reveals he is Cain's long lost son from a previous relationship, hellbent on making Cain's life a misery as he did to him when he abandoned him. Later, an explosion goes off on the boat, caused by the paraffin brought on board for the stove, but they all make it off in one piece. Cain then visits Nate in hospital where he reveals that he did what he did to get revenge on Cain for abandoning him and his mum, Cara Robinson. However, Cain is adamant that he never knew she was pregnant and that she never tried to contact him. Faith arrives and reveals that Shadrach who was racist and wouldn't accept his son having a child with a black woman sent out several threats to Cara and because of this, Faith was the one responsible for driving Cara away in an attempt to protect them all from Shadrch's wrath. Faith wants the pair to move forward, but Cain’s overwhelmed with the news and tells Nate to stay away from him and his family. Cain then turns his back on Nate, disowns Faith and publicly exposed Nate's true identity and affair with Moira. Shortly after, Faith leaves the village.

Cain refuses to forgive Nate and Moira and stops Moira from seeing the kids. Nate tries to make amends, wanting to get to know Cain, as well as the rest of his new family, but Cain wants nothing to do with him. Cain gets upset when he finds Nate at Wishing Well Cottage with the rest of his family and tells them they have to choose, forcing them to freeze out Nate as well. On Christmas Day, Cain was upset to see Belle had invited Nate over again, trying to insist that Nate was family and told him that he should forgive him as he had made much worse things in his past but was still forgiven. Cain gave in and told Nate he would not stop the rest of the family from getting to know him but said he should not talk to him.

In January 2020, Cain came face-to-face with Cara for the first time since they were teenagers after she was called by Moira who wanted to get rid of Nate.

Background information

  • Jeff Hordley decided to leave the show in April 2006, with the door left open for a potential return. He was asked to return to the show but initially turned the offer down until he felt the "time was right". Cain's exit storyline was the kidnapping Tom and Sadie King and Cain fleeing the country (which also resulted in Sadie's exit). Cain returned in Episode 5282 on 28th April 2009.
  • In 2011, it was announced that Cain would be attacked by a mystery assailant. Six suspects to the attack were named: John and Moira Barton as Cain had destroyed their marriage by having an affair with Moira. Jai Sharma and Charity Tate as Cain had terrorised them and caused them to end their relationship; Amy Wyatt as Cain had got her pregnant through a one-night stand and had then proceeded to taunt her about being a single teenage mother; and Cain's father Zak as he felt Cain needed to be taught a lesson for the things he had done and for disgracing the Dingle family name.
  • James Prentice portrayed a teenage Cain in Episode 7992 (17th November 2017). 



  • Jeff Hordley (the actor who played Cain Dingle) has been nominated and even won some awards for his character's acclaimed performance on multiple occasions.