Fury over plans to turn closed 'Peaky Blinders-style' pub into mosque

Fury over plans to turn historic ‘Peaky Blinders-style’ pub into a mosque: Ex-punters slam ‘utter contradiction’ of allowing teetotal Muslims to pray in place meant for drinking (despite their local being closed for three years)

  • Plans have been submitted to turn a closed Birmingham pub into a Mosque
  • Residents are concerned it will bring about high levels of noise and traffic
  • One argued Muslims aren’t allowed to drink ‘yet they want to go to a pub to pray’

Plans to turn a historic Peaky Blinders-style pub into a mosque have been called ‘madness’ its former regulars and residents.

Locals who live near to The York are concerned at the potential levels of traffic and noise it would cause with prayers starting as early as 4:30am.

The Birmingham pub closed three years ago but was once home to a thriving community hub in Hall Green, dating back to before World War Two.

Despite this many residents have been hoping the pub doors would swing open to customers once again.

But it was discovered the ArRahma Muslim Foundation had bought the building and applied for planning permission to convert it into a mosque with classrooms.

Some living nearby claim it is an ‘utter contradiction’ for Muslims, who are teetotal, to worship there.

The York pub in Hall Green, Birmingham, has had a planning application to be turned into a mosque to the annoyance of some locals who are worried about noise and traffic

The Birmingham pub has been described as like a ‘real Peaky Blinders pub’ (TV show pictured)

The pub has been closed for three years, but some former regulars have hoped the day the doors would open again

The pub had tried to run as a hotel and pub to keep profits up before it was forced to close in 2019

Shop worker Gemma Dixon, 24, said: ‘I think it’s madness really. Muslims aren’t allowed to drink yet they want to go to a pub to pray.

‘It’s an utter contradiction to everything they stand for.

‘If a pub landlord wanted to knock down a mosque and replace it with a beer garden there would be uproar but yet it’s ok if it’s the other way round?

‘That doesn’t seem right to me. The pub used to put on great reggae nights and discos and I think with the right landlord they could have made it a real success but that’ll never happen now.’

Neighbours in the heavily populated residential area are also concerned about the levels of noise coming from the mosque – after it emerged prayer times would start as early as 4.30am.

One resident said: ‘I am a tolerant person and I’m not against anyone worshipping but I was really hoping the York would reopen as a pub.

‘Before it closed in 2019 it had served beer before World War Two. To us it was like the real Peaky Blinders pub. It had lots of history.

‘I’m also worried about the potential for noise. The planning application states that prayers can start at 4.30am.

‘That means cars and talking outside. I know pubs can be loud places but at least most people go home at around 11pm.’

The York was once a thriving community hub in Hall Green, Birmingham, which opened before World War Two

The blueprints for the Mosque include two large prayer halls and classrooms

Chelsea Du Cros, a local resident, is worried about the traffic a mosque would bring

Mum-of-one Chelsea Du Cros, 27, who lives yards away from the proposed mosque, said: ‘I’ve lived near a mosque before and it was a traffic nightmare.

‘They park everywhere for services and the traffic around here is already bad.

‘There’s a nursery and children’s centre up the road and I just worry that a mosque will make it even more dangerous for kids when they cross the road..’

The pub attempted to increase its income by transforming into a hotel and bar but the business struggled to turn a profit and it closed for good in May 2019.

In the planning application, representatives for the ArRahma Foundation said: ‘There will be some harm to the historical significance of the asset as a historical Public House.’

But they go onto say the development ‘will ensure that the building remains in a community use for future generations’.

A spokesperson said: ‘The site is being converted from a Public House to place of worship with ancillary out of school setting education and community facilities.

‘I can confirm we have purchased the site from the previous owners who had approval for conversion of the site from a pub to a 30 room hotel.

‘We are not keen to publish the purchase price.’

Birmingham City Council planners are expected to rule on the mosque plan later this month.

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