Redhill's Memorial Park will close later this month for a £1.5 million revamp.

Reigate and Banstead Borough Council said this week that after months of planning, preparations are now underway for the start of the main works on Monday, March 24.

From that date, the park will be closed to the public for the duration of the main works.

It will reopen when the facelift is complete in the autumn.

A Reigate and Banstead Borough council spokeswoman said the preparations now underway include thinning out some of the trees near the park entrance and removing some non-native conifers from elsewhere in the park, before the bird nesting season. She said new trees will be planted later on as part of the main project, and more will be planted than will be removed.

The existing pavilion building is also being refurbished to provide a base for tennis coaching and storage.

The park will remain open for the time being, with affected areas cordoned off to ensure public safety. Later on, Buxton Building Contractors Limited, who have been appointed by the council to carry out the refurbishment, will begin setting up their site office and moving equipment onto site. Natalie Bramhall, borough council executive member for property and regeneration, said: "As a Redhill ward councillor, it’s really exciting to see things happening on site after all the planning that has gone into this project."

Coun Bramhall said: “I'm sure that, like me, local people are looking forward to watching our ambitious designs for improving our park take shape. “When complete, it will be a real asset to the town and one they can be proud of."

Adam De Save, borough council executive member for leisure, said: "We’d like to apologise in advance to park-users for the short-term disruption while we improve their park.

“However, it will enable the project to be completed much more quickly than is possible with a phased closure. “With greatly enhanced sports and leisure facilities for local people and the wider community to enjoy, I know the end result will be worth it."

Buxton will be responsible for building and fitting out a new café pavilion and toilets, creating a new 'sports zone' with a multi-use games area, an extra tennis court to enable tennis coaching from the park, and a trim trail.

They will also be installing a new children's play area next to the café, with the old equipment to be refurbished for resale to community projects.

Other work undertaken by Buxton will see them improving the cycle route and footpaths, landscaping to create a new performance space for events, a community orchard and new planting schemes, and improving the entrance and boundaries to the park.

The Memorial Park improvement project is being funded from a variety of sources including TravelSMART funding and Sport England lottery funding.