ONE THOUSAND people turned out for the grand opening of a mosque in Southend yesterday.

The Essex Jamme Masjid Mosque, in Chelmsford Avenue, was formally opened by Southend mayor Brian Kelly.

A host of other dignitaries were in attendance.

Southend MPs David Amess and James Duddridge were both guests, along with former MP Teddy Taylor, who gave a speech.

Imaan Shaykh Mahmudul Hasan addressed the worshippers, welcoming them to the mosque which partially opened in 2009.

Mosque secretary Rafique Ahmed said: “It went very well and it was a lovely opening ceremony.

“The Southend Shobuz Bangla Youth Club were fantastic as well. They provided food for 1,000 people, working so hard to get it all finished.”

Themosque, which was converted from a former United Reform Church, works with other mosques to promote tolerance and understanding.

The Essex Jamme Masjid Trust was formed in 1986.