There was once a disused cinema on Wolseley Road, Sheffield. For many years it was then used as a makeshift mosque. Round about 2004 that decrepit building was demolished and from the ruins emerged a spanking new purpose-built mosque - funded by the local Muslim population and overseas donations. This new mosque - The Madina Masjid Mosque opened in 2006 and towers above the Heeley Bottom/Lowfields area - making an enormous statement about this city's Muslim population - mostly from Pakistan. It seems to be saying - we are here to stay, we are proud of our religion and we are are no longer poor immigrants.
I have driven by the mosque many times. About two years ago I noticed a new legal office had opened up close to the new mosque - "Ashraf and Ashraf - Immigration Specialists". I am not necessarily proud of what I am about to say but the presence of that company with its headline raison d'etre has frequently made me shake my head in exasperation. I mean what are this company about if not to make money from other people's desperation and to somehow weave around and dodge through the British government's legal red tape? They say "Ashraf & Ashraf is a professional and friendly firm fighting for you and making Immigration simple." To this I would say - why should immigration be "simple"? To me it should be pretty damned difficult. And why is there a white BMW on the pavement?
I had hoped to get a good image of the "Ashraf and Ashraf" business premises with the mosque behind but this was the best I could do:-This is a better picture of the mosque:-
And this is the golden crescent on top of the central dome:-
Soon after taking this photograph I was invited inside the mosque by a local taxi driver. What his motivation was for inviting a total stranger and lifelong atheist inside - I have no idea. I had to take my shoes off by the lobby area and went upstairs to the main prayer room. It was empty at the time I snapped this picture of the magnificent chandelier that hangs below the central dome:-
And so I have now decided to become a Muslim myself....only kidding! This is my kind of mosque and it is here that I shall worship Bacchus:-
|"The Union Hotel", Nether Edge, Sheffield|
I am sure plenty of non Muslim solicitors have a BMW .....ReplyDelete
The building does make for a welcome addition to the skyline of the city. I agree
To tell you the truth Earl, I don't think this building "fits in". It has too many eastern features - harking back to countries of origin when at least half of Sheffield's Pakistani community were born here. With more self-confidence and integration, British mosques of the future will surely shed many of the old world features - those traditional ideas of what a mosque should look like.Delete
All lawyers make money out of other peoples misery. It's the nature of the beast. A BMW is hardly excessive transport for a lawyer.ReplyDelete
This is a wonderful building and does credit to Heeley.
I think that - by law - lawyers should only be allowed to travel by public transport or on mopeds.Delete
No chance. You have heard it many times before but if you can do. You will be paid.Delete
So can I take it from that that you were once a high-powered lawyer Adrian? I can just imagine you in one of those wigs and a black gown making money out of other people's misery. No wonder you can afford a camper van, two West Highland terriers and meals out at Fischer's!Delete
How nice to be invited in and allowed to take photos.ReplyDelete
Yes it was a nice moment. I'd have liked to hang about longer and take more snaps but the taxi driver kept hovering - probably imagining that I was a Christian extremist.Delete
You can get free immigration advice from the immigration advisory servce. The only way you can gain entry to Britain is through political asylum and that has become impossible. Immigrants paying tax are a welcome addition to a regressive country, those here illegally who pay no tax but claim nothing from the state are harmless. I would consider shipping out lazy and ignorant indigenous Britons before I would worry about immigrants of any race, creed or colour.ReplyDelete
On to that ship I would happily shove the ultra-politically correct whose hackles rise whenever questions about immigration are raised. In my view that way of blind-thinking belongs in the same bag as racism.Delete
But what's he doing parking on the bl**dy pavement?! Anarchy on the streets of Sheffield?!ReplyDelete
Precisely Brian! You are a man after my own heart!...Most of the immigrants that that geezer will have profited from will have been quite poor and desperate but they can see his BMW whenever they visit the mosque. That's nice for them, isn't it?Delete
I just wanted to say how much I like your new blog skin, Neil. Very elegant.ReplyDelete