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Last Updated: Sunday, 26 June, 2005, 10:33 GMT 11:33 UK
Mosque will be 'open to everyone'
Muslims at prayer
Muslims have no formal place of worship in Cornwall
Proposals to build the only mosque in Cornwall have been criticised.

Restormel Borough Council has put forward plans to build new homes and community facilities - including a mosque - on the edge of Newquay.

The Newquay Mosque Opposition Group (NMOG) says it would prefer to see a cinema complex, skating rink or even a supermarket on the site.

But the Ahmadiyya Muslims, which want to build the mosque, say it would be a a benefit to all local people.

A mosque has been designated in the Newquay Growth Area proposals by the council to regenerate the area. Developers involved in the proposals include the Duchy of Cornwall.

It is a building of peace, not only for Muslims, but for everyone
Rashid Ahmad Chaudry

Ahmadiyya Muslims are followers of Mirza Ghulam Ahm.

But spokesman Rashid Ahmad Chaudry told BBC News that the Ahmadiyya Muslims welcomed everyone, of whatever religion.

He said: "The mosque will be a benefit as a community centre for everyone, not just Ahmadiyya Muslims.

"We welcome everyone and encourage other religions to visit and speak.

"We get school visits, so children can learn about Islam or the Islamic world.

Jobs call

"People should not be upset. It is a building of peace, not only for Muslims, but for everyone."

A building in Truro used by 40 Muslim worshippers closed down last year because of a disputed increase in traffic and noise.

The NMOG claims to have 3,000 signatures against the proposals for the Newquay mosque.

It has called for a "cinema complex/ice skating rink/supermarket/bowling alley or something for the whole community... that will not be out of character with the area.

"All these facilities would generate revenue, giving us something that would generate jobs for Cornish people."

Restormel Borough Council is consulting local people on the proposals and is expected to produce a master plan next year.




SEE ALSO:
Muslims get fresh hopes of mosque
17 May 05 |  Cornwall
Council defends 'mosque' closure
27 Oct 04 |  Cornwall
Muslims seek to build mosque
08 Feb 04 |  Cornwall
Muslims seek new worship centre
01 Dec 03 |  Cornwall
'Find out about Islam' - vicar
10 Mar 03 |  England


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