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Photograph by Geoff Davies

Bolton Documentary Photography is a voluntary organisation, a community-arts group of photographers who are creating a pictorial record of life in Bolton. Our work is inspired by the country’s first Mass Observation study (the so called Bolton Worktown project) which took place just before the second World War, and the documentary photography of Humphrey Spender in particular.

Our group’s work has a wider scope than the original Worktown project in that we like to document community activities, voluntary groups, public services and other activities which contribute to the cultural strength and diversity of Bolton.


We are working on an exciting new exhibition under the title of Film Friendly Bolton. Our aim is to focus on Bolton Council’s efforts to promote Bolton as a location for film and TV projects, through its work with Creative England (North) and with location managers at the BBC, Granada TV, and with a range of independent production companies.

We’ve worked with Bolton Documentary Photography for several years now and have found them to be accomplished photographers of live performance. They have shown themselves to be unobtrusive and sensitive to the working practices of our actors and our production teams. We believe they have the skills and experience well-suited to documenting film and TV productions”.

Lotte Wakeham, Artistic Director, Octagon Theatre, Bolton

Le Mans Crescent as a film set

We will broaden our Film Culture theme to include archive material, which will touch on a century of bygone Bolton cinemas, as well as past films made in Bolton, such as ‘The Family Way’ etc. We’re also exploring the contemporary scene through various topics – including the annual Bolton Film Festival, local film making, media education and home-grown cinematic talents.


We are also currently working on a community based project called Ambition for Ageing, in partnership with Bolton Community Voluntary Services, Age UK Bolton and Bolton at Home, and is targeted to the Halliwell, Crompton, Tonge and Haulgh wards.

An experienced knitter

The programme is aimed at older people and seeks to built new and strengthen existing community groups by providing small, but significant grants that enable these groups to develop their activities and networks.

Bolton Documentary Photography have been commissioned to record through the medium of photography a selection of the many and varied activities supported through the Ambition for Ageing project. Such projects have so far included luncheon clubs, craft groups, gardening schemes, yoga groups and many more. 


Our website explains the history of the group, explains who we are and showcases a selection of photographs from a number of our past projects and exhibitions.

If you think we can help you with your current or upcoming project, please feel free to get in touch with your requirements, and we’ll get back to you


website ©boltondocumentaryphotography2020

All images displayed within this website remain the copyright of the original photographer. For details on how you can use an image, please contact us