THIRTY years ago, the likes of Giant Haystacks and Big Daddy were cheered on by grannies clutching their handbags.

Now the grunters and groaners are back, as the sport of wrestling made a return visit to Bolton at the weekend.

And, while the names of the champions have changed over the years and the average age of the audience is now much younger, the excitement has not diminished.

Up to 400 people - mostly parents with their children - turned up at Bolton's Albert Halls on Sunday to watch an All Star Wrestling spectacular.

Fireworks in each corner of the ring added to the electric atmosphere in the hall.

All Star Wrestling is a cult live wrestling competition which originated in America.

James Mason, Dean Tooextreme, Kid Cool and Dynamic Domino formed the Greater Britain team, who faced eight other wrestlers from Canada and America.

As the crowd cheered and jeered, the wrestlers lapped it up as they performed a range of well-rehearsed moves that the fans have come to love.

The show was a mixture of theatrics, gymnastics, acting and physical hard work.

The crowd got their money's worth, as the four fights and a final lasted more than two hours.

Lewis Taylor, aged seven, from Breightmet, said: "I've seen the wrestlers on television and think they're brilliant.

"My favourite is James Mason because he can do handsprings.

"I want them to come to Bolton more so I can watch them live."

The foot stamping, clapping, booing and cheering did not stop from beginning to end as Great Britain, after much blood, sweat and tears, took the title as champions.

The wrestlers were visiting Bolton as part of their nationwide tour, but the organisers hope wrestling may become a monthly event at the venue.