Brighton and Hove Football Club has agreed an £18 million deal with Elior to provide catering at their brand new stadium which opens next year.

The £93 million American Express Community Stadium has is due to open in June 2011, after two and half years of contruction.

Elior will be responsible for the new stadium’s eight hospitality suites, which can accommodate 2,400 people.

Malcolm Fox, Elior's sales manager, said: “Historically stadiums existed purely as football grounds, until clubs realised there is a lot of business to be gained in the 300-plus non-match days in a year and the grounds had to be adapted to become conference and banqueting facilities.

"But the American Express Community Stadium is a conference and banqueting centre that will become a fantastic football stadium when there's a match," he added.

"We've already had numerous enquiries to book it for the launch month."

The Seagulls have been without a permanent home since 1993 when the former board sold the Goldstone Ground, to developers, with no new stadium arranged.

Since then Brighton and Hove Albion have been tenants at Gillingham's Prestfield Stadium in Kent before moving to Brighton's Withdean Stadium.

Posted on 16/08/2010