CANADIAN cocktail connoisseurs can have a taste of Bolton in more ways than one.

That's because Smithills-based adventurer Nick Griffiths, 47, has donated his amputated toes to a Yukon hotel for its signature drink.

His bizarre gift - which he sent by air mail from his local post office - was for the Downtown Hotel's famous "Sourtoe Cocktail" which features a mummified toe floating in the glass.

In order to join the Sourtoe Cocktail Club, drinkers must let the toe touch their lips.

Mr Griffiths said: "I wasn't going to need the toes so I thought it would be fun to donate them."

He lost three toes on his left foot last year after taking part in a gruelling 300 mile Canadian ultramarathon in temperatures of minus 50 degrees

Severe frostbite meant he had to pull out of the race on the second day. He was rushed to hospital where doctors told him he had third degree frostbite and bathed his hands and feet in hot water.

After several days in intensive care he flew back home and staff at Royal Bolton Hospital referred him to Wythenhsawe, which has a specialist burns unit.

"They amputed the big toe and the next two toes on my left foot in a three-hour operation. People told me I might have problems with my balance and a limp, but apart from not being able to wear flip-flops I'm absolutely fine. I was very lucky."

It was during his initial treatment at the Canadian Hospital that a nurse told him about the curious tradition of the Sourtoe Cocktail.

He said: "She showed me a video of it and I thought it was funny. That's why I asked the Manchester surgeon to give me my amputated toes."

The Downtown Hotel, located in the Canadian Arctic Circle received the package last week.

Manager Adam Gerle said: "We couldn't be happier to receive a new toe. They are very hard to come by these days."

After a six-week mummification process, Mr Griffiths' toes will join three others currently in circulation at the hotel bar.

"The big toe is the money toe," said 'toe-master' Terry Lee. "We usually don't get frostbitten toes. Usually, they're from gout or diabetes, or they're lawnmowers or chainsaws or accidents.... To get a frostbitten toe, that's phenomenal."

The tradition began in the 1970s when a local man discovered an amputated toe while cleaning out a cabin and used it to found the club and its rules. To date, the Sourtoe Cocktail Club has more than 100,000 members.

The hotel has invited Mr Griffiths back out there later this year so he can drink a toast with his toe and join the club.

Naturally, the hotel will "foot" the bill.