Bromsgrove's new £24m railway station has been officially opened by Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid.
He was joined by representatives from Worcestershire County Council, West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), Network Rail and London Midland, along with other stakeholders, to mark the opening of the new station, which became operational to the public on 12 July 2016.
Mr Javid said: "Since I was first elected in Bromsgrove six years ago residents have expressed their interest for an improved train station.
Cllr Ken Pollock, left, Richard Dugdale, Sajid Javid MP, Patrick Verwer, James Aspinall, WMCA director of corporate services, and Cllr Richard Worrall mark the official opening of Bromsgrove station.
"The £24m investment in the station has made it more accessible with better facilities, opening further windows of opportunity.
"Not only will residents benefit from this improved service, it's also great news for our local economy which can continue to fuel the Midlands Engine."
The new railway station was developed by Worcestershire County Council, WMCA and Network Rail, with construction contractor Buckingham Group. It cost £24m to design and build.
WMCA jointly funded the new station in partnership with Worcestershire County Council to improve access to the wider West Midlands transport network.
Rail users are benefitting from a range of improved facilities including a staffed ticket office, passenger waiting room, toilets and 350 car parking spaces. An external concourse links passengers to the car parking areas along with new bus stops, a taxi rank, pedestrian footpaths and a cycle store.
The station is fully accessible to all users and has the capacity to handle 800,000 passengers per year.
The longer platforms will allow additional rail services to stop at Bromsgrove in the future. Further railway construction works are scheduled during 2016 as Network Rail electrification works continue. Once complete, there will be four trains per hour between Bromsgrove and Birmingham.
Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council's Cabinet Member for Economy, Skills and Infrastructure, said: "The station has been open for just over 7 weeks now and it's great to see the new facilities being so well-used.
"We are significantly investing in a number of major transport schemes across the county. This funding will ensure we have good transport links to and through Worcestershire, which we recognise are vital for stimulating economic growth for existing businesses and attracting new businesses into our county."
Richard Dugdale, Network Rail’s Senior Sponsor, said: "We have worked closely with our colleagues at the WMCA and Worcestershire County Council to deliver the station, which supports our wider Railway Upgrade Plan to provide a better railway for people in the area.
"This is the first part of a series of upgrades in Bromsgrove, with more to come. More reliable signalling is being installed, investment is taking place in new track and the line between Bromsgrove and Barnt Green will benefit from electrification, providing a better, more frequent and reliable train service.”
Councillor Richard Worrall, Chair of the WMCA’s Transport Delivery Committee, said: “The new Bromsgrove railway station is already proving to be a superb facility which brings real benefits for people in the town.
"As well as providing so much more for passengers, such as a staffed ticket office and vastly improved cycling and car parking facilities, it will enable increased frequency of trains and better access to rail services across the region and beyond.”
London Midland staffs the station and runs trains from Bromsgrove to Birmingham and Hereford.
London Midland managing director, Patrick Verwer, said: “The new station has already been well received by passengers. With electrification still to come, rail users will be able to benefit from a more frequent service to Birmingham making it even easier and simpler to travel by train.”