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Control4 scores at Accrington Stanley football club with GB Integrated Systems

New £2.5m hospitality and conference suite, with the build managed by Readstone Construction which subcontracted GB Integrated Systems to supply a turnkey AV solution

Control4 control systems have been installed at Accrington Stanley football club within a new £2.5m hospitality and conference suite, with the build managed by Readstone Construction which subcontracted GB Integrated Systems to supply a turnkey solution for the new facilities.

Accrington Stanley football club in Lancashire became infamous in 1989 thanks to a Milk Marketing TV advert, featuring the slogan “Accrington Stanley, who are they?”. It’s a phrase that has been re-quoted in playgrounds, homes and pubs across the nation ever since.  Today, the club is positioned in English Football League One and boasts a following of life-long devotees – many of whom have supported the club since its home, Crown Ground, was opened in 1968.  

In 2015, Crown Ground was named the WHAM Stadium after a sponsorship deal was reached with Andy Holt, a local businessman and owner of manufacturing company What More UK Ltd. Following the sponsorship deal, plans were launched to replace the old timber-framed 90-100 capacity bar with a modern and smart £2.5m hospitality and conference suite, which could be hired out to provide an additional revenue stream for the club. Work on the suite began in 2021 and the project was completed in Q4 of 2022.

Readstone Construction subcontracted GB Integrated Systems, a Control4 Certified Showroom Partner, to supply a turnkey solution for the new facilities. The remit was for the design, supply, installation and commission of the fire, security, lighting control, commercial AV and automation systems. GBIS met with the ASFC board of directors and Readstone Construction to present its proposal, and soon after the deal was sealed.

“One of the main briefs was that everything – air-conditioning, lighting, AV – had to be controlled from one panel,” explained Simon Whittam, co-owner & director of Readstone Construction. “GBIS took this brief and designed a fully integrated Control4 system that not only met the brief but exceeded the customers’ expectations”. 

The GBIS team were closely involved with the interior design and building teams from the early stages of the project. This site-wide collaboration of suppliers from the start of the build helped to minimise any unexpected challenges. 

The suite is largely open-plan and has been divided into a variety of cleverly zoned areas: Coleys bar, The 1968 Lounge, The Chairmans Lounge and The Snug/Buffet Lounge. Space Invaders, the interior designer, created an industrial aesthetic throughout and used a mix of varying finishes and colours, to individualise the different zones.

Lighting was an integral element of ‘zoning’ each area. Mood-matching lighting scenes provide a different atmosphere in each zone, from fine dining in the 1968 Lounge to match days in Coleys Bar. The zones can also be synchronised to unite the entire space into one lighting zone – depending on the requirement of the client. The pre-sets are programmed into the Control4 solution and can be instantly selected at the touch of button, making it simple and quick to manage. 

As well as lighting, Control4 also provided control for heating and cooling, external/internal CCTV, intruder alarm system, audio system, projection screen and commercial large TV screens from one user interface. The venue team can manage all of these technologies, set-up event scenes and monitor functionality from a Control4 touch screen. In addition, the team can also use the Control4 mobile App on a smart phone, providing on-the-go flexibility on busy match days.

 “It’s been two years in the making and we are proud of this venue,” enthused Accrington Stanley chairman Andy Holt. “This is for the community of Accrington to use, it’s for the club to be able to support itself financially and it’s another step forward for Accrington Stanley. I don’t think that there is a venue like this at any other football club.”