A NEW community centre and after-school club looks set to be created on the site of a former plumbers’ merchants in Nelson.

The former Victoria Works, at the corner of Railway Street and Vernon Street, would also serve as a Muslim prayer hall five times a day.

Supporters say that the venture will be open to Muslims and non-Muslims interested in gaining a greater understanding of Islam. Applicant Khakik Ur-Rehman, of nearby Bracewell Street, said: “Our intentions are to make use of the premises for educating children after school, with prayer facilities for students and the community.

“Many children from the community are being left behind in educational matters as there is a lack of space to accommodate them.”

The centre, formerly the trading home of Plumbase, would be open seven days a week, with up to 40 students attending from the local area per session.

He added: “As well as an educational centre for children from a Muslim background, we hope to exert attention on the needs of the same chldren and bring them up to be good, honest and hard-working citizens of the community.”

No major external works would be required, to make the scheme a success, but some internal alterations are proposed.

Plans have been formulated for separate entrances for boys and girls, with disabled access off Railway Street.