MILLIONS of commuters will benefit from faster journeys after the Government announced a multi-million-pound scheme to upgrade an important railway station.

The Department for Transport (DfT) will spend £150 million on upgrading Gatwick Airport station, aiming to reduce delays caused by platforms overcrowding.

The work will start next spring and will take about two years to complete.

Some 46 million people use the airport every year, with more than 20 million arriving on the train.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said it was “vital” to make the station more accessible for commuters.

He said: “The UK’s second largest airport has direct rail links to more than 120 destinations and is an important public transport hub.

“We want to see Gatwick Airport’s success continue to flourish and ensure that it is ready for even more passengers in the future.

“Through this £150 million investment, we will deliver vital upgrades to boost the station’s capacity and provide better, seamless journeys.”

The planned upgrades include doubling the size of the ticket hall, widening two platforms, and adding five new lifts and eight escalators.

Gatwick chief executive Stewart Wingate said the redesigned station will “take the airport’s redevelopment to the next level”.

He said: “The new station will complement the huge improvements to rail services at the airport, which include new fleets of Gatwick Express and Thameslink trains and services that now leave the airport for London every three minutes – as frequently as services on the tube.

“The project is a fantastic example of the public and private sector working together to deliver a world-class transport hub that will comfortably manage the expected growth in air passengers.”

The renovation will be managed by Network Rail and the DfT.

It has been partly funded by Gatwick Airport Ltd, which manages the airport, and the Coast To Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, which partners councils and businesses across Sussex.

Network Rail investment director Paul Harwood said the upgrades will provide passengers with a “more pleasant experience” and reduce delays.