THE Bolton Cricket League will remain independent from the proposed Greater Manchester League and is looking into creating two divisions.

The Bolton League have reiterated their stance following a statement released by the GM League’s steering committee last week in which the latter outlined its proposed structure and the criteria it will use to place clubs into divisions.

The Bolton League are continuing to be involved in the development of the GM League prospectus as agreed at its meeting in December and reiterated at last week's full Bolton League meeting.

Bolton League clubs voted in December to remain intact and independent after the GM League’s scheduled start next spring.

The Bolton News received confirmation of the Bolton League’s stance after the latest development with the GM League was reported in the Bolton News on Saturday.

The Greater Manchester League is looking to replace 10 leagues in the area – including the Bolton League and the Bolton Association – with one super league, with the top division gaining Premier League status.

The issue has polarised opinion with some believing a multi-division Greater Manchester League would solve some of the current problems facing local cricket and improve standards, and others believing it would reduce overall standards and lead to increased travel.

The Bolton League is now looking into the feasibility of expanding and creating two divisions for the first time in its 80-plus-year history.

They will be asking clubs throughout the summer if they want to go to two divisions with a view to introducing it.

Another of the major leagues invited to join the GM League, the Lake Garage Central Lancashire League, today released a statement saying its clubs had also voted to remain independent.

The statement says they have withdrawn from all further talks on proposals for the GM League, and within the statement CLL chairman Neville Fletcher described GM League meetings to date as being a “well oiled propaganda machine in full flow, hell bent on achieving its aims."

He adds: “It appears to be an intention of the GM League steering group to extinguish leagues which have existed for more than 120 years."

You can read the CLL statement in full, and Saturday's story about the GM League's plans online at