Religious centre plan to go ahead
Plans to build a place of worship and education centre look set to be approved despite neighbours' objections.
Goodwood Community and Education Trust wants to put up a three-storey religious centre, with a 19m-high minaret and 31-space car park.
It would be at the corner of Gamel Road and Davenport Road, Goodwood, Leicester, where temporary cabins have served a similar purpose for five years.
The redevelopment plan – for a former pub site – will go before Leicester City Council's planning and development control committee on Thursday. Senior planning officers are recommending the scheme be approved.
However, 33 people have signed a petition opposing the plans and six sent in letters of objection. They said the site was not big enough, would be too noisy and would create traffic and parking problems.
Carol Wellborn, of Davenport Road, said: "We've lived here for 50 years, but every Friday can't get a parking space in our own street.
"The big thing for me is the buses. During prayer times on Friday, the roads are blocked. It means buses can't get through. They are a lifeline to the many elderly people in this area.
"My neighbours are Sikh and Muslim and I have no problem with that, but my view is there are enough mosques.
"This place would be ideal for a youth or community centre, which people are crying out for – something everyone could use."
A Harringworth Road resident, who did not want to be named, said: "They say they're a community centre, but a tenants' association meeting the other day was the first time in five years they've invited us in.
"Come prayer time, it's impossible to park."
Another resident said: "Thirty-one parking spaces is nowhere near enough."
If approved, hours of use will be from 7.30am to 11pm on most days and conditions would prohibit parking on verges and live or amplified music or calls to prayer.
In his report, planning director Andrew Smith said: "I consider a new building and car park would greatly improve the appearance of this prominent corner plot.
"The proposed conditions would help to minimise the impact on nearby residential properties."