Christianity and Islam Race for Prominence at Olympic Park

March 22, 2008

Author: Ashling O’Connor

Source: The Times

The Olympics is meant to promote solidarity – but the 2012 Games has become a question of faith for some in East London as Christianity and Islam vie to become the most visible religion around the 500-acre park.

Muslim leaders have begun a charm offensive with residents in the borough of Newham over controversial plans to build a 12,000-capacity “super-mosque” on the edge of the Olympic Park.

Trustees of the Abbey Mills Mosque conducted tours of the 18-acre site in West Ham last week to show they had “nothing to hide", say their Westminster lobbyists.

The tours are a prelude to a summer exhibition of plans for the £75 million mosque designed by architects Allies and Morrison, whose buildings include the Royal Observatory and the Royal Festival Hall. The mosque is likely to be Europe’s largest and four-times the size of Britain's largest cathedral.