THE new look Twickenham station, complete with the eye-catching statue on the revamped forecourt featured in last week’s paper, was unveiled on Tuesday.

The massive refurbishment, which includes better access for people with disabilities, was opened by the Mayor of Richmond, Cllr Nicola Urquhart, and the cabinet member for transport, Cllr Mark Kreling.

The facelift for the station is the product of an alliance between Richmond upon Thames Council, Transport for London, South West Trains and Sweltrac – the South West regional group of transport bodies.

The much-needed improve-ments to the look and security of the station, and to access, have cost £700,000.

The station’s interior has had a makeover to improve access with a stairlift to the main platform.

The building has a new canopy and facade and the main entrance now boasts electric sliding doors. The station platforms have been repainted.

A special entrance has been created for access from the upgraded car park direct to the platform to provide greater safety and convenience for people with disabilities.

Security has been boosted by the removal of a wall overlooking the car park, and has been replaced with a metal post fence.

The station forecourt has been refurbished to improve pedestrian facilities in and around the entrance.

There are new cycle facilities too, and a pelican crossing has been provided nearby to make access to the station easier and safer.

In addition, bus stops have been moved so that they are close to and easily accessible from the station.

The new-look is set off by a ten-foot-high sculpture on the forecourt.

Entitled Restless Kingdom, is has been created by Guy Rushworth Harden who was commissioned by Richmond upon Thames Council.

Cllr Kreling, said: “The refurbishment has transformed the station from an unfriendly-looking, down-at-heel place to a smart, modern one with a range of new facilities and much-improved access.

“The sculpture is a truly eye-catching feature. Bringing art into public spaces is part of a drive to enhance the street scene.” Liberal Democrat councillor Martin Elengorn, added: “This is one of the fruits of the Sweltrac partnership with nearby boroughs and the transport operators which the Liberal Democrat council pioneered in the 1990s.

“The Twickenham station scheme itself was approved by the Lib Dem council in 2000 and I am delighted it is now complete.

“It will bring substantial benefits to public transport users, pedestrians and cyclists."