Mosque plan go-ahead after land deal

    An agreement was drawn up which will see Pendle Council compulsory purchase land for the Jamia Sultania Mosque, Brierfield, Lancashire. The construction of the _2.5m. mosque, in Oxford Street, ground to a halt when the trustees were unable to buy a small section of land needed. The trustees own 95 percent of a parcel of land adjacent to Oxford Street, and have already secured planning permission and funds to build the mosque. However, the project cannot continue without acquiring the site of the former house. The house was demolished by the council before 1974 due to its state of disrepair. The present owner of the leasehold is unknown. Since 2005, the trustees have been in contact with the freehold owners whose asking price for the land has been around _50,000 when the land is only said to be worth _5,000. Unwilling to pay the owner’s price, the trustees asked Pendle Council to make a compulsory purchase order on the land to take control of the plot and sell it to the mosque trustees. The request was approved by the council’s Brierfield and Reedley Committee, and given the final nod by members of the council’s Executive. Cllr Tonia Barton said: “It’s hardly surprising this man has seen a chance to make a profit, but it is unreasonable to hold up this major development.”

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