D-Day looms for decision over socalled mega mosque in West Ham

D-Day is looming for plans by a Muslim movement to build a socalled mega-mosque in West Ham holding more than 9,000 worshippers.

It is believed Newham council officers will recommend that councillors reject the controversial proposals for the Riverine Centre, also known as Abbey Mills Mosque, put forward by Tabilighi Jamaat.

The plans to erect the complex, which at 29,227 square metres is more than three times the floorspace of St Paul’s Cathedral, are due to be heard by Strategic Development Committee at Newham Council on Wednesday of next week (December 5). A report prepared for the meeting is expected to appear on the council’s online meeting calendar this evening.

The development includes a segregated space for nearly 2,000 women, a library, dining hall, visitors centre, eight flats for imams and guests, along with tennis pitches, a garden, and a riverside walk along Abbey Creek. Around 264 parking spaces would be provided.

The former industrial land at the end of Canning Road is one of ten sites listed for strategic development by Newham Council. The council’s core strategy set out plans for developments on the site to create a new town centre for mixed use around West Ham Station.

It states that any faith must not dominate the use or scale of the 6.3 hectare site overlooking the historic Abbey Mills pumping station and Canary Wharf.

The council’s core strategy also states that the site should provide a mix of residential and retail uses.

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Previous plans for a mosque on the site included retail units but mosque trustees said these were dropped following consultation with the Muslim community.

Around 3,000 worshippers a week currently use facilities at the site, which has around 300 car parking spaces.

The meeting will be held at the Main Hall at the Old Town Hall in Stratford.