Over the first few years in the village Archie gained a reputation as a somewhat unreliable character: he was paid to fix the boiler in the local public house The Woolpack but after he supposedly repaired it became faulty and nearly released gas into the air; and he was also paid by Alan Turner to repair the motor on his car, but Archie ended up tampering with the brakes, nearly causing Alan to have an accident. However Nick Bates began to lead Archie astray and one evening they went joyriding in Hotton and ended up in the cells for a night. They also frequently caused trouble in The Woolpack, by winding up other customers and arguing over the prices that pub landlord Amos Brearly was selling the alcohol at. The trouble eventually ceased when Archie and Nick were warned by Amos, who threatened to bar them. Nick is the first person who finds out that Archie worked at a slaughterhouse prior to his arrival in the village, and that he was sacked after an accident with a band saw.
In 1989 Nick's brother-in-law Jackie Merrick is killed after accidentally shooting himself while hunting a fox with Seth Armstrong for a bet. Nick blames Seth for Jackie's death and leaving Nick's sister Kathy a widow, and he enlists the help of Archie to set fire to Seth's Hide as revenge. However the police are alerted and although Nick escapes Archie is caught and arrested. Feeling guilty as Seth was his friend, Archie pleads guilty to arson at his trial and is sentenced to twelve months in prison. Nick later visits Archie in prison and Archie forgives him for having him put in prison, and gives him a letter to give Seth telling him that he was sorry for vandalizing his land.
On New Year's Eve 1993 Archie and Nick go to The Woolpack and encounter Seth and Lynn Whiteley. Seth and Lynn wind Archie and Nick up over the rumors that Elsa is spreading that they are gay lovers in order to gain possession of Alice, Nick's daughter. Archie and Nick then leave the pub following an argument with Seth and Lynn but as they are walking home a plane crash hits the village. Archie and Nick are blinded by fumes and a ball of fire engulfs Archie in flames. Archie is never seen again and was presumed dead by the village, although his body was never found. The villagers mourn the death of Archie and the three others, Mark Hughes, Leonard Kempinski and Elizabeth Pollard after recuperating from the shocking plane crash.
"Oh Nick, just shut up, will ya?" - Final line to Nick Bates.