VIDEO: Brighton & Hove Albion to hold one minute silence

Defender Gordon Greer and cheif executive Paul Barker

Defender Gordon Greer and cheif executive Paul Barker

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At a press conference, the chief executive of Brighton and Hove Albion, Paul Barber, said the team were devastated to learn the loss of former staff member Matt Grimstone and Seagulls fan Jacob Schilt.

Mr Barber said: “We would like to extend our sympathy and condolences to the victims of the Shoreham Airshow disaster.

“Obviously we were very, very sad to learn that we’d lost one of our own staff Matt Grimstone, and also another young lad Matt was travelling with Jacob Schilt known to us as a fan of the club and also a footballer that played on our charity side.

“We were devastated anyway and even more devastated when we learned we lost those two young men, both 23 years of age and their whole lives ahead of them.”

To honour the lives of those lost in the plane crash at the Shoreham Airshow on Saturday, the team will hold a one minute silence ahead of all Capital One Cup second round ties taking place tonight and Wednesday.

Matthew was an Albion employee for the past seven years, and fellow Seagulls fan Jacob featured in the most recent Robert Eaton Memorial Fund charity match against Crystal Palace in April.

“Matt has been with us since he was 16,” said Mr Barber. “Everyone remembers him as very happy, very kind, very considerate young man, someone who was very popular with all of his colleagues here.”

Mr Barber said the football club had also acted as a base for the emergency services who have been on the A27 since the weekend.

He said: “We offered the emergency services the opportunity to use our facility here as a base for their operations given the proximity to the crash site, and we’ve been delighted to play a small part in helping them to do their jobs and again on behalf of the club just to say what a fantastic job they have done.”

A visit was made to the family of Matt Grimstone this week by Mr Barber.

He said: “The family are incredibly dignified and very thankful for the time they had with Matt, but also devastated at losing someone so young.”

Mr Barber added that it was difficult to host a match for 20,000 people on Saturday while news of the crash broke, leaving fans and employees anxious about whether loved ones had been affected.

Defender Gordon Greer said it is difficult to have a tragedy on your doorstep.

He said: “Matt has worked here for a long time and he’s part of the team here. We’re shocked as a club.”

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