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A Muslim journey

British Islam is dominated by culturally and theologically conservative south Asians. But the London bombs may help to make it more open to those who want to engage with the modern world

By Ehsan Masood   August 2005

As the former home town of HG Wells (he wrote War of the Worlds there), George Bernard Shaw, Peter Gabriel and the Spice Girls, Woking occupies a special place in British cultural history. The town also has a special place in the history of British Islam, as the site of Britain’s oldest mosque. The building, which opened in 1889, is no bigger than a detached house and has a green, onion-shaped dome and matching minarets. Today it is hidden among a warren of houses and streets, but back then it must have been quite a sight, surrounded by fields and…

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