Report - River Croal - Bolton Culverts, March 2010

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Staff member
Nov 24, 2008
Bolton Culvert(s) - Undergound Bolton - Visited by Ojay, Gone, Rookie & Urban Soldier.

The River Croal is culverted at three seperate points through Bolton town centre, running under Knowsley Street; the Market Place and Bridge Street. Prior to 1836 the River Croal formed the boundary between the townships of Great and Little Bolton.


Another last explore and bombing it over to Bolton late one evening we once again wadered up.

Access was one of the Outfalls on the other side of town where we walked firstly downstream then back Up-Stream towards Bridge St, passing under Bradshaw Gate and the Gates Shopping Centre.

On the way, there was some very interesting features, in all we spent 4 hours and it was nowhere near long enough!

The night wasn't complete without it's comedy moments:

Me and Gone both falling into some huge hole in the middle of the river bed

Gone getting attacked by killer budgies LOL,

Rookie getting pissed wet through because he only had wellies.

Anyway some photos of the River as it passes through under the Town Centre, Enjoy :thumb

Infall into downstream section, mainly concrete

Looking back out

After A long walk down we came across the roaring weir at these falls


Eventually we could see daylight

Just further downstream

Looking back upstream

Eventually we came to another infall even further downstream

Whilst at this point we spotted this curious egg shaped sewer/storm outfall


And This

Urban Soldier had no sooner pointed this out, that before I could grab my camera Gone was in like a rat up a drainpipe. Seconds later he came flying out like a crazy mutha, he was being attacked by 'Killer Budgies' I managed to Grab a few shots before Gone & Rookie jumped back in and headed up the overflow.

If you look hard enough you can see 'Killer Budgies' just inside....

Heading back upstream from the section we first started at

Fucking soaked after dropping down some big ass hole just infront :(

Passing through a mixture of concrete and stone arches



It was here we noticed some massive metal door, inside we were under the foundations of what looked like to be part of the Gates Shopping Centre


We eventually arrived here

This was by far the most interesting section even though we didn't make it onto the bridge still managed to get some decent shots

Last edited:


28DL Full Member
Jan 4, 2010
Great report man! :thumb

The curious "egg shapes" are older Victorian sewers.. Their shape is designed to scour any build up of detritus or sediment using water pressure alone! Bloody clever stuff really.. their clothes were still gay! :gay


Staff member
Nov 24, 2008
Good work glad you found it! How the fuck did you end up soaked? Did you manage the rooms that the bridge leads too at the end? Safe

Edit* Just read the post properly, LOL, falling down holes in culverts, wtf! Legends, funny shit.
Yes my son, FOOKING SORE!!!

Was a laugh tho :D :D

Didn't get on bridge, that sling you were on about was way up too high dude... Looks like some other gear required for that :popcorn


Staff member
Nov 24, 2008
The killer budgies are actually Dippers They nest inside culverts and get really p*ssed when they think you're threatening their nest... Cute little beasties really, as long as you stay out of their space, whereupon they become spiky, angry, pecky little sods with a death wish. :D

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