WORK is beginning on the first phase of a £6 million overhaul of Crewe Railway Station.

Phase one of the renovation includes a new surface-level car park with 240 spaces and 11 disabled bays, new pedestrian access from Weston Road and a new commercial development site next to the station.

It also includes a new entrance with facilities for taxis and for people to pick up and drop off family and friends, refurbishment of the existing subway to platforms and an area for delivery vehicles to access the station.

Nantwich Road entrance will not close during the work. The taxi rank will operate as normal. The work will create dual access to the station on the upper and lower levels.

Phase-one is funded by £6.177m from the Government after a joint Network Rail Cheshire East Council (CEC) bid.

CEC leader, clr Michael Jones, said: “This is tremendous news both for Crewe and for Cheshire East as a whole.

“This work is a crucial piece of the jigsaw to deliver long-term regeneration to enhance the attractiveness of Crewe as a place to live, work and do business.

“A revitalised rail hub is critical to boosting the town’s economy and its attractiveness to businesses and visitors.”

Demolition and foundation digging work will start early next month. Work will be completed for spring 2014.

The scheme is central to CEC’s package of revitalisation schemes dubbed ‘All Change for Crewe’ John Lea, chairman of the All Change for Crewe Board, said: “Works at the station are long overdue but at last townspeople can see positive change taking shape.

“The Victorian infrastructure has been crying out for investment and finally we have something which is not a proposal or a plan but a scheme under way.

“This may only be phase one, but it’s the start of a new era for rail travel, giving Crewe a station which lives up to its reputation as a famous rail hub.”