WMA has found a suitable premise which has come up for sale. Through numerous meetings with the current owner, we have agreed to a price and have now applied to the local council for the permission to establish this building as an Islamic Educational and Community Centre.
We aim to provide religious, social, economic, educational and welfare services to everyone. To provide a comprehensive programme for the community to create model Muslims who understand their Islamic duties and obligations to create a constructive dialogue with the wider communities.
The Windsor Muslim Association is considering launching a legal challenge over its thwarted plans for a Islamic community centre in the town.
The community group has been searching for a permanent home for a decade and set its sights on converting a detached property in Ruddles Pool, off Maidenhead Road, into a new place of worship.
Windsor and Maidenhead council refused planning permission in October 2020 due to concerns the development was not suitable for greenbelt land and could ‘intensify’ congestion on the nearby A308.
Planning inspector, Rachael Pipkin, said the local authority’s decision to refuse the application should stand in a report published on November 16.
She said the ‘tranquillity of the area’ could be impacted by 30 families using the venue on a regular basis and said the site’s insufficient parking could lead to overspill along Maidenhead Road.
But Mohammed Ariff, chairman of the Windsor Muslim Association, told the Express the planning inspector had over-estimated the number of worshippers who would use the facility.
He said: “The planning inspector is saying 30 members means 60 or 90 people are going to be in the building at the same time but this is nonsense.
“Never in our history have all our families gathered at the same time.”
Mr Ariff added the main busy period would be for an hour during Friday prayers and the group planned to provide a traffic officer to help manage those visiting by car.
The Windsor Muslim Association has tried to secure a number of permanent homes in Windsor in recent years and currently uses the Scout Hut in Maidenhead Road as a temporary base.
He added: “We are going to challenge this decision and are considering taking this to the High Court because what other option do we have?”
Source: Maidenhead Advertiser