Technology pioneered by a Warwickshire company is being used on the world's first purpose-built combined indoor and outdoor sports stadium.

Work has now begun in Gujarat, India, to build the 25,000-seater stadium which is utilising technology created by Meriden-based StadiArena.

The company has designed a system which converts an outdoor sports stadium into an indoor arena at the touch of a button.

Within just six minutes, a partition wall is activated and the first 16 rows of seats are retracted, creating a covered space which can be used for exhibitions, concerts, conferences, film screenings, indoor sports, receptions and numerous other uses.

The contract is worth £4 million and will be the company's first operational stadium using its system.

Most stadia are used for around one year out of their 50-year lifespan but StadiArena's system means the stadium can generate income away from its core sport.

The firm won the contract for the stadium in the city of Ahmedabad in 2009 after the then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, who was recently elected Prime Minister of India, championed the innovative development.

When completed in April 2016, the Ahmedabad stadium will be a multi-purpose sports and entertainment facility offering potential for a national sports academy.

StadiArena was founded in 2007 by Paul Fletcher MBE, a former professional footballer for Burnley and Bolton Wanderers who later became chief executive at Huddersfield Town FC where he oversaw development of the award-winning Alfred McAlpine Stadium.

The firm has been working with UKTI to bring the product to international markets since 2010.

He said: "We are delighted our project is coming to fruition. Having our first operational StadiArena in such a visionary and progressive city as Ahmedabad is truly an exciting prospect.

"The assistance we've had from UKTI to get our product into India - as well as other new markets - has been fantastic.

"The India project has given us a wealth of knowledge about how business in India works and the importance of good contacts and patience."

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