Fears over revival of mega-mosque plan
An Islamic group will this week relaunch its bid to build a 12,000-capacity "mega-mosque” next to the Olympic site. The Tablighi Jamaat group, a Muslim missionary movement once described as an "ante-chamber of fundamentalism”, wants to build Britain’s biggest place of worship in West Ham.
It will have 40ft minarets, a library, a visitor centre and a 300-space car park at the Canning Road site. The scheme has aroused years of intense opposition since the group first submitted plans in 1999. In 2001, it agreed that worship would only be on a temporary basis. Permission expired in 2006 but the group continued to use the site.
In 2010, the council issued an enforcement notice but it successfully appealed against it last year and more than 5,000 people a week now worship at the site which houses several pre-fab buildings.
A spokesman for Newham council’s planning department said: "We are expecting another application by the end of this week and will then start a formal consultation process.” (...)