Chelsfield Partners, the investment vehicle run by Elliot Bernerd and Sir Stuart Lipton, has submitted a planning application to develop a £47m (€70m) leisure and conference centre in the Bulgarian city of Plovdiv

The 7.5 acre (3 ha) scheme is being developed in a joint venture with Plovdiv Municipality and Akademik, the sports society of the local university, which owns the land on which the complex will be built.

Proposals include the development of a 5,000-seat sports arena, a skating rink, cinema multiplex, 150-bedroom hotel, restaurants, bars and a shopping mall.

Once the development has been completed, the university and local authority are expected to take ownership of the sports facilities and stadium, while Chelsfield will take full ownership of the shopping centre and hotel.

Planning officials at the council have indicated that they will begin discussing the project shortly with a decision expected within the next two months.