THE revamp of Swindon railway station was completed two months ago, but was officially opened yesterday.

The development team, including Swindon Council, Forward Swindon, Network Rail and First Great Western were celebrating the upgraded “front gate” of Swindon yesterday despite it being three months overdue.

The celebrations at the Christmas tree on the forecourt, were hosted by Swindon Council chief Rod Bluh and councillor Garry Perkins, cabinet member for regeneration and culture.

They were joined by the choir of Isambard Community School who were singing carols for everyone to join in.

The £1.8m scheme, funded by the Department of Transport, Swindon Council and Network Rail, provides new facilities such as a new taxi rank and decorative paving, seating and trees.

Coun Bluh said: “First impressions matter. Rail visitors to Swindon will now have a much better initial view of the town than they would have had before.”

Amanda Hoyland, Network Rail’s route enhancements manager, said: “We’re sure passengers will appreciate the new forecourt, which has been built to a high standard and quality of finish.”

Robin Bailey, chairman of Forward Swindon said: “The mainline station is a major route into Swindon for commuters and visitors, all of whom will now have a better impression of the town .”