BBC Home > BBC News > England

Stadium will be 'worth the wait'

29 September 09 11:55 GMT

Brighton's planned football stadium has been welcomed as a "fantastic piece of community investment".

Laurence O'Connor, from Brighton Kempton Constituency Labour Party, said the new stadium in Falmer would be worth the wait for fans and residents.

Construction of the new 22,500-seater stadium began in February after years of planning setbacks.

Brighton and Hove Albion's new home - which will replace the old Goldstone Ground - is due to open in August 2011.

"This new facility will not only provide a focus for sporting activity in the community, it will be a focus for all manner of local activities," Mr O'Connor said.

'Best stadium ever'

Brighton and Hove Albion currently play at the Withdean athletics stadium and have been without a home since 1997 when the Goldstone Ground was closed and sold off.

"The club has been [at] a temporary site ever since," said Mr O'Connor.

"But now, as my 10-year-old son Marcus said: 'Falmer will be the best stadium ever'."

The initial planning application for a new stadium was submitted to Brighton and Hove City Council back in 2001, but protesters complained that the design did not fit in with the local area.

The plans were given the go ahead by the government in July 2007 after a High Court challenge and two public inquiries.

Brighton and Hove Albion chairman Dick Knight has said the new facility would be a "real community stadium".

Related BBC sites