London Central Mosque in Regent’s Park and Fazl Mosque in Southfields both achieved Grade II* listed status this week.
The London Central mosque was built in the 1970s, three decades after the acquisition of the site was authorised by Churchill’s war cabinet. Sir Frederick Gibberd was the architect who designed the mosque after winning an international competition. Gibberd mixed together elements of British modernism with Islamic forms when designing the beautiful building.
The Fazl Mosque was a community-built mosque with funds being raised by communities in India. Construction was aided with the support of voluntary labour. The mosque blends together Indian Mughal forms with contemporary, British trends.
Alongside these two mosques achieving listed status Britain’s first, purpose-built, mosque in Woking, Surrey was upgraded to Grade I* status and Britain’s first functioning mosque, based at 8 Brougham Terrace in Liverpool has been upgraded to Grade II* status.
This celebration of British Islamic heritage signifies our deeper understanding of mosque buildings in England. The reappraisal of these buildings has been a result of Historic England delving deeper into the history of British mosques for their new book ‘The British Mosque’
In a wider context the protection of these buildings demonstrates Britain’s willingness to embrace different cultural and religious communities as well as protecting the culture, heritage and history of the designs and the values surrounding them.
“By listing these beautiful mosques, we are not only preserving important places of worship, but also celebrating the rich heritage of Muslim communities in England.”
Michael Ellis, Heritage Minister