Diversifying Religion: how many mosques are there?

Have you ever thought about how multicultural Britain actually is? The difference is religious affiliations are pretty diverse, with multiple religions being spoken of in the UK. Consequently, there are significant differences in the portrayal of religions and their importance. Particularly, there are significant differences in the presence of different religious institutions across the UK. The most conspicuous fact Is the difference in religious institutions present for Muslim religions and the Christian faith. As such, there are different numbers of churches and mosques in the UK. One can imagine that the number of churches in the UK is pretty large, but how many mosques are there?

According to the Newstatesman (2018), there are around 15000 mosques across the UK. In comparison, there are 40000 churches in the whole UK. This is a significant difference in numbers; however, this may reflect the patterns in the population. There are only about 2.8 million Muslims in the UK, representing nearly 3% of the British population. This may suggest the difference in numbers. Most mosques across the UK reside mostly in England. Most of England’s mosques are located in London, with the least mosques located in the country’s North East. Scotland and Wales only have 6 mosques together, 2 of them in Wales.

how many mosques are there in the UK
Source: Anadolu Agency

The mosques are also subdivided into different Muslim religions. The Sunni and Shia Muslims. Although sharing a lot of fundamental beliefs of the core pillars of Islam, the Sunni and Shia Muslims have a particularly strong divide over who the successor of the Prophet Muhammad. This divide goes back at least 14 centuries. Today, about 85 percent of the approximately 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide are Sunni, while 15 percent are Shia, according to History (2019).

Out of the 15000 mosques, only 16% of these buildings are purpose build. Some of these institutions are converted for religious purposes when there is a time of prayer. Most mosques, however, focus using their spaces on charitable work, such as the actions of mosques in Central London and Manchester. These charitable actions often include fundraising for a good cause or teaching English to immigrants from the Eastern world. This eases the integration of individuals coming from outside to the UK to love in Britain.

how many mosques in the uk
Source: South West Londoner

The biggest mosque in the UK is the Baitul Futuh Mosque in London. The building was completed in 2003 and is represented in modern styled architecture. It can host up to 13000 people and 6000 people capacity in the prayer rooms. It is also classified to be one of the largest mosques in Western Europe. This mosque is the central complex of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Baitul Futuh has featured in national newspapers for its homeless feeding and national and local community cohesion efforts. This has been classified to strengthen community cohesion. One of the most beautiful mosques is located in Glasgow, Scotland. It was built in 1983 and cost nearly 3 million pounds.

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