Plans to regenerate Croydon town centre and build a new Westfield shopping complex have been approved.

Nearly £1.4 billion will be pumped into the project which will commence in 2019, bringing the number of Westfields in the capital to three.

Planners envisage the project will create 7,000 new jobs and 1,000 new homes.

News of the approval was announced on Tuesday.

The leader of Croydon Council said he was "delighted" with the development and said the plans marked confidence in the town as a place to invest.

The project is expected to create 7,000 jobs and 1,000 homes. Credit: Croydon Partnership

Upon completion Croydon will join Stratford and Shepherd's Bush in being home to a Westfield.

The planned complex will sit within a redeveloped core of Croydon's former Whitgift Shopping Centre.

More than 300 shops, restaurants, cafes and leisure facilities, as well as a cinema and bowling alley, are expected to be housed in the complex.

The scheme was jointly negotiated between the Council, the Croydon Partnership, responsible for the plan's overall planning, the Greater London Authority, and the Minister for London Greg Hands, with backing from the area's three local MPs.

Council leader Tony Newman said: "This is fantastic news for Croydon and we have been doing everything we can to bring the redevelopment of the Whitgift Centre to fruition so local people can benefit from its wealth of offerings, including the creation of 7,000 new jobs.

"The new homes and the thousands of jobs this development will bring shows investors are rightly confident about Croydon as a place to live, work and spend free time."