An aircraft pier extension and a new stand to handle Airbus A380 superjumbos are among more than £1 billion in additional spending planned on improvements at Gatwick.

A new five year capital investment plan for the airport was unveiled today, including £266 million in 2018-19.

The airport will spend £1.11 billion up to 2023, taking total investment since Gatwick changed ownership in 2009 up to £3.14 billion.

The expansion comes amid growing long-haul services, with Gatwick expecting overall passenger numbers to increase to nearly 53 million by 2023.

Other work outlined today includes a new domestic arrivals area and baggage reclaim in the South Terminal and a mezzanine level extension in the North Terminal departure lounge to accommodate new restaurants.

A trial of biometric auto-boarding technology in the North Terminal is planned togeter with extending the self-service bag drops across both terminals.

There will alos be a re-development of South Terminal hotel capacity and 1,200 more parking spaces for this summer at the terminal’s long stay car park.

A new reception centre for passengers with reduced mobility in the North Terminal is alos planned.

Chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “Gatwick is a major piece of national infrastructure, and our continued growth and ability to attract long-haul airlines is vital for the health of the UK economy, particularly in a post-Brexit world.

“We are exploring ways to grow our capacity, including developing new systems and processes to handle more passengers, and considering how we use all our existing infrastructure in the future.

“By committing to spend another £1.11 billion, Gatwick can continue to grow sustainably, attract new airlines and offer more global connections, while providing an excellent service to passengers.

“This year we will welcome new quieter aircraft with the introduction of A321s by easyJet and we are developing our infrastructure now, by reconfiguring airfield stands and planning for the construction of a major extension to our Pier 6 facility. These initiatives will support this next phase of growth.”

He added: “Looking beyond this capital investment programme, we welcome the government’s support for airports making best use of their existing runways and we will plan for our longer term future by developing a master plan later this year.”