A newly-opened mosque has been blamed for causing traffic congestion in surrounding streets.
Residents living close to the Sayyidah-Aminah Jamia Masjid mosque in the former Royal Hotel in Fagley Road, Bradford, claim worshippers are clogging up their streets making it difficult for them to park outside their own homes.
When it was granted planning permission, the mosque had assured councillors that 95 per cent of its users walk to prayers and leave their cars at home and consent was given against a recommendation by officers to refuse it.
But residents have complained to ward councillors and Bradford Council that since the mosque opened two months ago their lives have been made a misery by extra traffic.
One woman, who did not want to be named, said residents felt intimidated when asking mosque users to park elsewhere and had been sworn at. She also claimed that not all residents had been told about the planning application.
Another said her father and neighbours were having to park their own cars in other people’s streets and a man, who also did not want to be named, said he was worried emergency vehicles would not be able to reach some homes because cars for the mosque were blocking off access roads.
Councillor Geoff Reid (Lib Dem, Eccleshill) has been made aware of concerns and has visited the area and spoken to mosque leaders as well as residents.
He said: “If there are still concerns then council officers need to look in to them to decide if any enforcement action needs to be taken.”
Mullanah Sajid, the Imam at mosque, said no more than 70 people worshipped there and that everyone had been asked to walk to prayers.
“There is a big mosque in Killinghall Road but people living round here should all walk to us – and that is what we’ve requested of them.” he said.
“We have marshalls out on the streets at prayer time to help if anyone needs help but no-one should be bringing cars.
“We are not here to let the community down or hurt anyone. We want to build a perfect relationship with our neighbours. We are trying our best. If any residents have concerns I would invite them to come to us.”
A Bradford Council spokesman said as a condition of planning permission, the mosque had been required to provide funding towards a traffic regulation order to help control parking to the front of the premises.
“We are having talks with the operators to ensure they comply as soon as possible,” he said.
The amount was £7,000 and Mr Sajid told the Telegraph & Argus: “We haven’t paid it yet but I’m ready to pay when they ask for it.”