IT’S great pity to see that the well-known amateur operatic group Opera 74 is closing after 43 years.

Diminishing funds and an increasingly ageing membership is blamed. Members finally bow out after the annual Christmas 2 til 4 with Opera 74 afternoon concert on November 27.

The group was established in 1974 by Margaret Lindsay and Michael Greenhalgh to present early operas and has enjoyed a history of successful shows at Bolton Little Theatre and later at the Albert Halls.

Productions, however, are costly and a profit hard to make.

Opera 74 has done a wonderful job over the years and many local fans will be sorry to see this particularly accomplished society disappear. It has always been an important part of Bolton’s rich amateur operatic and dramatic society scene and reminds us all once more that, if possible, we need to nurture and support this seam of local talent.