BOLTON’S leading role in establishing Greater Manchester as the Hollywood of the North has ‘disappointingly' been left on the cutting floor.

City region chiefs have seemingly overlooked Bolton’s part in award-winning hit dramas and Hollywood blockbusters as they celebrated Manchester city centre’s “brilliant backdrops” which have become a "magnet for high profile productions" like The Stranger, Peaky Blinders, Years and Years and Cold Feet ­— which also used the stunning backdrop of Le Mans Crescent and Bolton School for scenes.

In fact, so popular is Bolton with production crews, Bolton Council opened a ‘film bureau’ in 2019 to deal with the huge number of filming requests it receives.

The Bolton News: FILMING: Sarah Parish filming Bancroft in Le Mans Crescent

(scene from Bancroft)

Red Productions, behind some of the biggest dramas on television have previously told The Bolton News described Bolton as a “perfect base”.

A spokesman said: “Bolton has such a wonderful range of architecture, stone and age of buildings that ­— amongst the warm welcome from the community­—is what makes it a perfect base for locations for a series.”

The oversight was made as Greater Manchester Combined Authority outlined how it, the region, would capitalise on its growing reputation as the 'Hollywood of the North', with the creation of new production studios and the opening of Manchester’s School of Digital Arts.

Bolton Council leader, and GMCA portfolio lead for culture, Cllr David Greenhalgh said:

“We are disappointed and somewhat frustrated at this missed opportunity to highlight Bolton’s increasing significance in the UK film and television industry.

“Our growing popularity is a result not only of the borough’s stunning scenery and iconic buildings, but also the hard work the council has put into building strong working relationships with some of the UK’s leading production companies.

“This brings benefits for local businesses and ensures Bolton is given primetime exposure to a national and global audience.”

The Bolton News: Production teams on Le Mans

(Production teams roll in)

Council deputy leader Cllr Martyn Cox said: “It is disappointing that Bolton has not been mentioned.

“Le Mans Crescent in Bolton town centre has become a premier film location. I think it ought to have been mentioned as a significant filming location.”

He added that filming was a huge boost to the town, both economically but also in term of the showcase it receives nationally.

“It brings money into the local economy with significant amount of people coming into town and helping to showcase the town centre.”

Cllr Elise Wilson, from GMCA said:”We have so much to offer to those who make TV, film and content – outstanding facilities, dramatic locations and access to a huge pool of talent. The sector contributes enormously to our regional economy, employing thousands of people in skilled roles, while also helping the city-region maintain its status as a global cultural hub."