Written by RAYMOND BROWN
A first ‘moving’ look at the inside of Cambridge’s controversial new mosque has been released on film.
The animated video has been created by the architects and takes the viewer on a journey through the giant halls and prayer areas of the planned building in Mill Road.
And fundraisers have already raised a quarter of the cash needed to pay for the Islamic centre – which is open to the wider community.
Planning permission was granted in August last year for the £17.5 million structure.
The three-storey domed building will be constructed on the site of the former Robert Sayle warehouse.
It will boast a “stunning” prayer hall with capacity for 1,000 people, a café and teaching rooms, plus a library, a mortuary, and a large public garden fronting the street.
A mosque spokeswoman said: “This is a really beautiful animation and it’s meant to bring to life the spirit of this mosque, which is one of an oasis.
“The idea is that this mosque will be a spiritual sanctuary, where you can recharge and where both the Muslim and wider community can enjoy a place to gather and connect in a really beautiful setting.”
Richard Howitt, MEP for Cambridge, was bowled over by the video.
He said: “This video is visually stunning and gives an idea what it will be like inside the new mosque, I defy anyone not to be impressed by the architecture and use of the space.
“The bright open space where the former Robert Sayle warehouse lays in ruins now will be an asset to the whole community on Mill Road. As an elected representative and a local resident, I am proud to be backing the work and look forward to seeing the final outcome for myself.”
But the plans have sparked controversy and the English Defence League has held a march and a rally in the city against the mosque, and more than 40 neighbours objected to the scheme.
Vandals targeted the site after the Boston Marathon bombings when graffiti artists daubed offensive messages on the hoardings of the building site, as the News reported.
The attack happened just after two bombs were detonated near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuring more than 170.
Mosque fundraisers plan a series of events this summer and we will feature again on Channel S on July 29 for the Ramadan telethon.
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