LONG-awaited public improvement works in Neston's town centre have begun.

The £400,000 project will see old pavements replaced by high quality natural stone, new granite crossings and street furniture.

Beginning last Monday, the scheme will continue for 12 weeks and aims to improve the centre for residents, visitors and traders.

Cheshire West and Chester Council’s executive member for culture and economy Cllr Stuart Parker said: "I am delighted to see these works begin, which will no doubt make a huge impact on the town centre for all who visit.

"This project will be complemented by other initiatives being delivered over the coming months including signage and public art that will help improve the look and feel of the whole town.

"We are seeing a step change in the quality of the public realm in one of our key market towns and I look forward to seeing further improvements happening in Neston in the future."

The project will be completed in time for Neston’s Ladies Day, which is celebrating its 200th anniversary in June.

The scheme is funded by Sainsbury’s under a "Section 106" planning agreement and Cheshire West and Chester Council.

Sainsbury agreed to part-fund the revamp when it was given council permission to open a store in the town in 2010.