THE junction of the M61 and M60 at Kearsley is one of the busiest parts of the motorway network.

For commuters travelling towards Manchester during rush hour, it is often bumper-to-bumper traffic, with drivers facing long delays.

For years, residents and commuters have been calling for something to be done ­— and now it looks as if there might be light at the end of the tunnel.

Highways England has met with residents about plans to ease congestion at the junction ­— which had included a link road through Kearsley, which would join the M61 and M62.

But this option is no longer being pursued.

Instead, highways bosses are looking at a road that would link junctions 12 and 18 of the M60, bypassing a chunk of the motorway.

It is hoped this would ease congestion on that stretch of the M60, which runs from Eccles to Simister Island, via Worsley, Kearsley, Clifton, and Whitefield.

It would also include looking at key pinch points, such as between junctions nine, 10, 17 and 18 of the M60 and remodelling junctions 12 and 13, as well as options such as park-and-ride.

This project is in its very early stages and any relief road is not expected to be built until 2025 and at an estimated cost of £5.4 billion, according to estimates in 2017.

Whichever option is chosen, this will be a large-scale project that will make a difference to a very congested part of the motorway.