Astonishing pictures show how council workers painted double yellow lines right through the middle of several huge potholes.
The workforce did not seem concerned enough to raise the issue with highways chiefs and instead decided to paint over the top of the gaping holes in the road.
The work has been blasted as a "waste of money" with one local councillor branding the workmen of having "messed up completely".
Councillor Ian Bevan told Manchester Evening News: "I just think it's ridiculous and it makes you angry that money is being wasted like this, particularly when money is tight, by painting over holes that need filling in.
"They should have made sure the potholes were filled first. They messed up completely."
The incident came just two days after borough councillors had voted to tackle potholes in the Bury area, last Wednesday.
Last month an inquest heard how Roger Hamer, 83, died after falling from his bike and landing on his head on Bury New Road in Ramsbottom, which was said to be 'notorious' for potholes.
Cllr Alan Quinn, Labour cabinet member for environment, said he would ask his officers to explain the incident but he insisted the council was doing its utmost to tackle the borough's pothole problem despite government cuts.
The scale of the cuts meant 'we can't fix every pothole before putting down double yellow lines', he said.
"The problem is I need to spent £6m a year on the roads and that's just to stand still," he said, adding he would need to spend around £130m to revamp all the roads in the borough. "That's the size of the problem," he added.
The council had borrowed £10m for investment in roads and £1.5m of it was going to the repair section, he said.
"The Conservatives voted against that and accused us of mortgaging the future as I recall," he said.
The council had leased a 'spray injection machine' which can blast a hole clean and then fill it in about three minutes, he added.
The machine was working 'flat out' while the council would be buying its own machine for £138,000, he continued.
He pointed out that the council's annual budget would be slashed by £100m by 2010.