GREENWICH could get the congestion charge after it emerged transport bosses have secured funding from the Government to undertake a feasibility study.

Transport for London (TfL), with the backing of Greenwich Council, has begun testing the water to see if residents and businesses would back a road charging scheme.

Roadside interviews with motorists are being undertaken, as well as telephone surveys and focus groups are set to be quizzed too.

The news follows a bid made by TfL to the Department for Transport in July to secure funds to look into ways to alleviate traffic flow into the town centre.

The study is focusing on reducing traffic along the A206 corridor through east and west Greenwich which is often gridlocked.

Greenwich Council says funds are in place to implement a congestion charging package if a viable scheme is identified.

Other measures being considered include plans to improve public transport and river boat services to give motorists a reliable and viable alternative to car travel.

Traffic-calming measures, diversions, new road layouts and 20mph zones could also be on the cards.

Greenwich Council will formally consult residents and businesses following the analysis of the feasibility study which is due to take around 18 months to complete.

Council leader Councillor Chris Roberts said: "The issue of traffic congestion has concerned many residents for as long as most of us can remember."

He also says the regeneration of derelict land in Greenwich was increasing pressure on roads in the area.

Ray Smith, spokesman for the Greenwich Society, said: "We are looking forward to seeing the various options being put forward by the council and TfL to manage traffic.

"But if a congestion charge was proposed as part of a package of measures, I can say categorically residents should not be subject to this charge."

A spokesman for TfL confirmed it was in talks with Greenwich Council about ways congestion can best be tackled.

He said: "Given TfL's record in reducing congestion we are happy to work with any other borough in this way."