When I head out on my lockdown walks, I usually head in a northerly direction to the moors, but recently I decided to head south. To anyone who doesn’t know Bolton, you’d be forgiven for being surprised at just how much green space there is in and around the town. After (only) six years of living here, I still count myself as new to the area, and I realise there are swathes of the wider Bolton environs that I have not ventured out to at all.
Many of the footpaths and rights of way take you through green spaces that border industrial land or they track major roads – and both of those sum up this walk in particular. While its not necessarily pretty, I personally find that rural/industrial mix quite interesting, but I was especially delighted to come across an unusually bright and airy subway under the almost motorway-like A666.
Lined with vibrantly coloured paintings of the different kinds of people you’d find around town, I couldn’t resist taking few photos.
After a bit of research, I found out that this was created by students from Little Lever School, as part of a national campaign to use creativity to help tackle crime, with the help of an immensely talented local artist, Pete Marsh.
The location is Rose Hill Subway and the project is linked to a national campaign run by the University of Salford’s Youth Design Against Crime (YDAC) Solution Centre and led by Bolton Council.
I definitely think that art has made a big difference to this subway, when this type of urban feature is more often disregarded and avoided by locals. It now feels more useable, most certainly from the perspective of someone walking on their own. If anyone from Bolton Council reads this, then my ask is, let’s have more urban art in the area, please – it benefits everyone!
Please take a look at all the other paintings below:
For more information and examples of Peter Marsh’s amazing art works, you can visit his online gallery here.