Road charging in Bolton could cost motorists a total of £312m over the next 30 years, a pressure group has claimed.

Drivers could face a toll to use town centre roads if transport bosses decide to extend a charging zone currently planned for central Manchester.

Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive is considering the tolls as a way of part-funding £3billion of improvements to buses and trains across the region.

The remainder of the money - two thirds - will be a government loan, repaid over 30 years.

Action group Manchester Against Road Tolls (MART) says the amount of money raised by road charging in Manchester will fall short of the necessary annual repayments, meaning tolls could be introduced to satellite towns including Bolton.

MART says that drivers in Bolton could be hit with a charge of up to £5 per day to meet the shortfall. MART co-ordinator, Sean Corker, said the plans - currently the responsibility of Bolton West MP and Transport Secretary Ruth Kelly - could have a massive impact on her own constituents.

"Ruth Kelly has made no attempt to justify the importance of the transport bid and its effect on her constituents and the town as a whole," he said.

"Ruth Kelly's own constituents will soon be told to pay up to £100 a month for 30 years or more to drive into their own town centre to pay for little more then a new bus station."

Despite the claims, transport bosses say plans to introduce charging to towns like Bolton are far from certain and deny they discussed how much drivers would be charged.

The leader of Bolton Council, Cllr Cliff Morris: "These claims are irresponsible scaremongering.

"There are no plans for a congestion charge within Bolton and local Labour councillors and the Labour executive would oppose them if there were."

A spokesman for Greater Manchester TIF bid said: "This is a complete work of fiction.

"The TIF proposals are for £3billion investment funded in part by a congestion charge.

"We would never run a congestion charge that ran at a loss as it wouldn't support the investment in public transport. It is just patently ridiculous."

The bid for the £3billion transport infrastructure fund could see a new bus and rail interchange near Bolton railway station and an 11-mile bus corridor direct to Manchester.

Eight of the region's 10 councils, including Bolton, voted earlier this year in favour of lodging the bid in spite of polls showing the public were against the scheme.