In the 1970s Muslims from all corners of the world were arriving in Bath to study at the prestigious universities and to work. With no mosque in Bath a Palestinian businessman, Mr Diya Eddin Muhiyeddin Al-Muzaffar, allowed people to pray in the basement of his Georgian terrace house on Pierrepont Street. By 1980 the growing congregation had decided to try to buy the property in order to make it a full time mosque. Mr Al Muzaffar generously agreed to sell the house for £19,000, half the market value, if the congregation could raise the money to buy it. Within a few years the building was bought and the ‘Al Muzaffar Mosque’ was born, named in honour of our first and most generous benefactor.
In order to manage the property and run the mosque a limited company was formed and on 8th June 1983 the Bath Islamic Society Ltd was incorporated. The names and nationalities of the first Directors lodged with Companies House tells a story in itself:
- Osama Yousif Mohamed – Sudanese student
- Basil Saied – Iraqi student
- Mohd Khanil Taib – Malaysian student
- Salah Al Mulla – Kuwaiti student
- Ishaq Bambale – Nigerian student
- Anwar Mufti – Saudi Arabian student
- Anwar Suleman – British engineer
It was a truly international affair and then as they still do today, the foreign students were playing a central role.
Only one section of the community was yet to be involved. Since the days before the Al Muzaffar Mosque some residents and visiting workers were praying above a Restaurant, until in the mid 1990’s when the restaurant was forced to move. With no place to pray above the new restaurant alhamdulillah the whole Muslim community, the residents and visitors from all nationalities, became united under one roof in the Al Muzaffar Mosque and it has remained the one and only mosque for all Muslims in Bath to this day.