Page last updated at 11:52 GMT, Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Camberley mosque plan approved in principle

St Gregory's Roman Catholic school building
The school building has been used as an Islamic Centre since 1996

Plans to demolish a listed Victorian building in Surrey and build a mosque in its place have only been approved in principle, it has emerged.

The local Bengali Association wants to knock down the St Gregory's Roman Catholic school building in Camberley, which it has been using since 1996.

Surrey Heath Borough Council said a planning applications meeting on Monday was "minded to approve the proposals".

It apologised for any confusion that indicated permission had been granted.

Objectors to the demolition of the school building and the building of a new mosque will now be given a chance to have their say at a meeting before the council.

Domed roof

The council said anyone who had already lodged an objection to the application would be contacted and invited to register a request to speak at the Planning Applications Committee meeting.

Director of customer services Chas Bradfield said: "We are sorry for any confusion caused by the planning applications committee meeting [on Monday] which may have given the impression that planning permission has been granted.

"The application will need to go before the committee at its next meeting to allow completion of the process for people to have their say and comment at the applications meeting before a decision can be finalised."

The site is located within the Royal Military Academy Conservation Area.

The school building, which dates back to the 1860s, was sold to the Berkshire, Hampshire and Surrey Bengali Welfare Association, which has been using it as an Islamic Centre since 1996.

Under the plans, the existing building would be demolished and a purpose-built mosque with a domed roof and two minarets put up in its place.



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SEE ALSO
Council approves site for mosque
26 Jan 10 |  Surrey
In pictures: Camberley mosque
04 Sep 09 |  Religion and Ethics

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