Vivien used to be a matron until her mother fell ill. She then looked after her ailing mother until she died. When Vivien decided she wanted to start driving again because she was fed up with using buses she persuaded Jimmi Clay (Adrian Lewis Morgan) to help her choose and buy a car at an auction. Vivien got several people from the surgery to teach how her to drive, but they all got fed up with her, so she turned to Jimmi again who helped her pass both the theory and the practical driving tests. On Monday 16 June 2008, Vivien's house was broken into by two young men, one of whom, Ryan, attacked her sexually. On Monday 7 July, Vivien revealed to Jimmi that she had been raped and told him not to tell anyone as she was ashamed. This also resulted in her not sleeping very well. Jimmi offered to let her stay at his place but she turned him down. Jimmi told Vivien that he could tell his police officer girlfriend Eva (Angela Lonsdale) about what happened, but she was adamant she didn't want the police involved. Vivien later discovered another victim of the pair, Mary Lampton, had been seriously hurt after her attack, which prompted her to become a witness for the prosecution in their trial, on Tuesday 18 November 2008. However, after feeling the pressure of being a witness in court, she felt that she could not cope with the line of questioning and refused to continue.
Vivien made her supposed final appearance on 20 March 2009, when she finally decided she wanted to be with her old flame Lionel. She was seen heading off to start a new life with him in Bermuda. She didn't like the idea at first because she wanted to stay at The Mill, but when Lionel said he was leaving, she decided to go with him. However she was seen a week later on a farewell DVD message to George (Stirling Gallacher) and Ronnie (Seán Gleeson) saying that she was enjoying Bermuda and passing her best wishes to them both.