JOIN the Echo on a behind-the-scenes tour of Dean Court.

These pictures were taken shortly after the Fitness First Stadium opened in 2001 and provide a glimpse of the inner workings of the football club at the time.

AFC Bournemouth had just signed a 10-year deal with the Fitness First chain of health and fitness clubs for an undisclosed sum.

Due to the sponsorship the club was able to open three sides of the stadium rather than two, taking the opening capacity to 9,600.

The construction cost £6.5million including an internal fit-out of £1million.


court25 - pic by Richard Crease - Behind the scenes at the Fitness First stadium at Dean Court - Kit Manager bernie Morton

Kit Manager bernie Morton


Sponsor Fitness First was started in Bournemouth in 1992 by Mike Balfour and Christopher Pearce. It was once the third-largest health club chain in the world.