Birmingham & Black Country

Dudley mosque plans approved by council

Dudley Central Mosque Image copyright Google
Image caption Kurshid Ahmed said the number of worshippers had outgrown the Dudley Central Mosque

Plans to build a mosque in Dudley have been backed by councillors, almost 10 years after they were first put forward.

It means the current Dudley Central Mosque on Castle Hill will be replaced by a new one on land off Hall Street.

Kurshid Ahmed, from the Dudley Muslim Association, said the number of worshippers had "outgrown" the current building.

A larger plan for the Hall Street site was rejected for a second time in 2011.

'Very divisive'

Both Dudley Council and the Dudley Muslim Association have lost decisions in the High Court over the row.

Mr Ahmed said the plans had proved "very divisive" within the local community.

"One must remember the Muslim community in Dudley is an integral part of the wider Dudley community and have rights to a place of worship... as any other community," he said.

The latest plans, approved by councillors on Monday, include a community and training centre, sports facilities and a two-storey car park, along with a mosque, containing three prayer halls.

The proposals attracted 885 letters of objection and a small number of protesters gathered outside the council house after the decision.

Some called for social housing on the site, while others said the mosque's appearance was out of keeping with the area.

Some 370 letters were in support of the project, claiming it would regenerate a derelict site and the surrounding area.

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