Details on a £38M investment by United Utilities in some of Bolton's most scenic locations were unveiled today.

United Utilities is working on the project with construction company Ward and Burke to build a network of two storage tunnels between Firwood Industrial estate, Bolton Arboretum and Longsight Park, to reduce the number of times that storm overflows operate in heavy rainfall, as well as store untreated sewage during high rainfall.

 Spills from storm overflows dump untreated sewage into rivers and the sea.

This will help reduce the spills happening at Longsight Park and its arboretum.

The event at Harwood Methodist Church sparked a lot of interest from the local community who came to see how it would affect them.

The Bolton News: Read some of our top stories below:

Alan Bruton, contract manager, for Ward and Burke said: “The scheme will improve the water quality in Bradshaw Brook along with the other schemes ongoing in the area.

“The benefit is it moves 85 per cent of the construction activity to the industrial estate, away from the Bolton Arboretum and Longsight Park.

“We have worked with United Utilities to reassure the community, locals, users of the park, and football clubs in the area that the impact will be minimized.

“The original scheme would have impacted that more.”

The Bolton News: The project originally involved only building two large reception shafts in Bolton Arboretum and Longsight Park, which is why the construction company rethought the project, and moved most of the construction activity to the industrial estate.

The water company has been working in the area since last June, putting in an underground storage tank to collect sewage and ensure it does not spill into Bradshaw Brook. 

Access to Bolton Arboretum will also be made bigger so that construction vehicles are off the road.

Jane Wilcox who runs two community groups "The Friends of Longsight Park" and "The Friends of Harwood said: “A lot of locals and Friends of Harwood and Longsight Park attended their manned exhibition.

“I am delighted that they are able to enter the main Longsight Park entrance without any tree destruction now and locals will enter via the car park entrance and be directed to behind the pavilion, and then temporary path to recreation area.

The Bolton News: “Some friends members are now trained in river health reporting, and kick water testing for invertebrates, as are Bradshaw Angling Club, who we have worked with to treat Japanese Knotweed down the Bradshaw Brook.

“Although a testing time, we should all have a healthier environment and cleaner water as a result.”

The tunnels will be able to store more than 3500 cubic meters of storm water – which is the equivalent of nearly one and a half Olympic size swimming pools.

The Bolton News: A tunnelling machine will be used to create the huge storage tunnel and the project will improve water quality in Bradshaw Brook.

The park and arboretum will both remain open to the public throughout the construction but there will be footpath diversions and alternative access arrangements.

See the image below to find out which access points will be affected.

The Bolton News:

Jane added: "In addition, the path straight through the park will be open, although of course their working area will have path closure.

“Last year we (Friends of Harwood and Longsight Park) worked with United Utilities to design paths for people as alternative dry ways, and these will be well used.

“In the arboretum the entrance will be widened and only the riverside available until work is completed.

“We found the companies we talked to yesterday, helpful in wanting to optimise people’s use during difficult times, given this long narrow park has two sewage overspill outlets in great need of remediation."

If you have a story and something you would like to highlight in the community, please email me at or DM me on Twitter @JournoJasmine.