Greater Manchester or Lancashire?

Is Bolton part of Greater Manchester or Lancashire? A moot topic for many and a cause of great debate. Technically, there is no issue. Since 1974 Bolton has been part of Greater Manchester. However, since 1182 it has been part of Lancashire. For us, perhaps it gives a choice of the Best of Both Worlds – looking either to the thriving urban centre to the south or seeing ourselves on the very edges of the moorland and countryside to the north.

One arc of history has civic life on an ever broader stage – regional kingdoms becoming national government. Another is the opposite trend to reasserting regional identity – we will soon elect a mayor of Greater Manchester.  The ebb and flow of globalisation and homogeneity against local identity and character is likely to be ever with us.

So Greater Manchester or Lancashire? It depends.