The Blue Bell was situated on Spring Gardens in the centre of town. The pub was opened in the 1830s by Thomas Foster (born 1777). A cotton weaver by trade Foster most likely left the running of the pub to his wife Ann.
Thomas Foster appears in local directories from 1836 onwards. In April 1848 he was hauled before the courts after being caught serving beer on a Sunday morning a crime that saw him fined 2 shillings plus costs. 
The Bolton directory published later in 1848 sees Thomas Foster replaced by Joseph Graham and family. However, Thomas Foster had returned by 1852. He died later that same year and the pub appears to have closed a short time afterwards.
 Manchester Courier, 29 April 1848.