I luckily don’t live hereabout, but have been coming to see someone weekly over the last four years in this place called Bolton. I consider myself quite well travelled both in this country and abroad. I have witnessed some appalling places and sights in my 58 years, but with hand on heart, I have to suggest this post industrial gloomville called Bolton and its surrounding waterlogged villages. They have to rank with some of the worst possible assaults on the eye and mind possible in Britain.
When waterwheels were made obsolete in the powering of machinery, why did no-one have the foresight to give this place back to the wilderness of the pennine moors? If it were not for what seems like endless rain here – then yes… it would have some small redeeming features, such as Moses gate country park…its reservoirs…some of its historic buildings.
Superficially at first the greenery, rivers Croal and Irwell seem appealing… unfortunately soon you have a suspicion that all is not as it appears-in fact the whole place gives the impression of nature reclaiming post holocaust man made destruction, the greenery taking from direct sight the utter ruination wrought by hundreds of years of poisoning the land, and utter despoliation of the environment. The place has a sort of chemical stink…a miasma…even on the freshest of days.
Don’t take my word for it, a trip to the town centre museum has old photos and paintings of what this place once resembled… a vision of hell. The usual on this site appears to be to go on about chavs et al… I’m just going to say that I have never encountered so many fat ugly dishevelled people nor persons exhibiting signs of mental illness (I’m a qualified RMN by the way of my justifying my opine) in such concentrations as Bolton town centre – likewise the plethora of beggars with their pleas for ‘any spare change’.
If there is any evidence of depression in your biological make up, then I strongly advise you do not under any circumstances set foot in this area as it will bring on melancholia. Yes there are much worse places in Britain… but the seemingly endless rain exacerbates greatly the feeling of sadness, generalised grubbiness and pointlessness of this place.
You have my sympathy if you have to reside here.