Fareed Ahmad, Secretary External Affairs, Jamaat UK
Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya UK held more than 23 Remembrance Events on the sad demise of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, throughout the country, which over 3,000 people attended.
These events were held in Morden, Wandsworth, Birmingham, Manchester, Crawley, Newham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leamington Spa, Nottingham, Leicester, Cardiff, Bradford, Huddersfield, Gillingham, Dundee, Watford and Bromley.
The guests included 14 parliamentarians, 11 mayors, 27 councillors, 17 faith and interfaith representatives, and senior police officials.
At the Baitul Futuh Mosque, the event was held in the Tahir Hall after Asr prayer on 14 September 2022. A special exhibition was displayed on Her Majesty Elizabeth II and included letters from Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa to the Queen. Around 1,000 people attended the event, including four MPs, three mayors, one deputy mayor, eight councillors, three faith organisations, and a representative of the police borough commander.
The programme started with the recitation from the Holy Quran, followed by a one-minute silence in honour of Her Majesty the Queen. The guest speeches were followed by closing remarks by Amir Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya UK, Rafiq Hayat Sahib. A condolence book was opened for guests to sign.
The guest speakers included the Worshipful the Mayor of Merton, GLA Member Liberal Democrats, a Hindu representative from Streatham, a representative of the police borough, the MP for Wimbledon, the Worshipful the Mayor of Kingston Upon Thames, the Worshipful the Mayor of Sutton, the MP for Mitcham and Morden, and the MP for the Royal Borough of Kingston.
The event was also covered by various media outlets, including Reuters, AFP and PA media groups. An Urdu channel, Bol Network, also covered the event. Radio Jackie advertised the remembrance event in the news on the day.
Another event was held at the Fazl Mosque, where over 180 people attended the event, including neighbours. The guest speakers included Fleur Anderson MP, two councillors, George Crevilli and Malcom Grimston. The event was chaired by Mansoor Shah Sahib. Ataul Mujeeb Rashed Sahib, Imam of the Fazl Mosque, spoke about the Queen’s services and reiterated Hazrat Amirul Momineen’saa message. A condolence book was also available for guests to express their sentiments.
Another event was held at the Wandsworth Borough Civic Service, where the Mayor of Wandsworth Council, Jeremy Ambache invited local people to join a “Civic Service of Remembrance & Thanksgiving for Queen Elizabeth II” at St Mary Magdalene Church, Trinity Road. Syed Shakeel Ahmad Sahib, Regional Amir Baitul Noor represented the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community and addressed the audience.
Another event was held during the MKA UK ijtema in Kingsley, where 180 people attended the event, including 41 guests. The dignitaries included the Mayor of Alton, the Mayor of Farnham, the Mayor of Bordon, MP Jonathan Lord, Deputy Mayor of Guildford, a councillor from Surrey County Council, and a councillor from East Hampshire District Council. A video clip of Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa was played from the concluding address of MKA ijtema in which Huzooraa mentioned Her Majesty Elizabeth II. It had a very positive impact.
Another event was held in Crawley, where 60 people attended the event, including 30 guests. The dignitaries included the Bishop of Horsham and Arundel, the Police Commissioner for Sussex, the Mayor of Crawley, Deputy Lord-Lieutenant Sussex, a representative of Crawley Commander, a representative of the Church of Scientology, a Labour candidate, and a pastor and the ex-Head of Hazelwick school – Bible reading.
Another event was held at the Baitul Ahad Mosque in Newham, where 65 people attended, including an MP, nine councillors, a faith leader, a police representative and 10 external guests. A book of condolences was signed by many attendees.
Another event was held in Gillingham, where 110 people attended the event, which included 16 external guests. The external guests included the deputy mayor, councillors, church members and neighbours. A book of condolences was signed by all.
Another event was held at the Darul Barakaat Mosque, Birmingham, where 250 people attended the event, including 29 external guests. The guest speakers included the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, a representative of St Paul’s Church, the Bordesley Green pastor, an RAF Veteran representative, a Royal Navy representative and a Royal British Legion representative.
An event was held in Leicester, where 60 people attended the event, including eight guests. The guest speakers included the Deputy Lord Lieutenant and a representative of Leicestershire Police. The event was covered by Pukar News of Leicestershire.
Another event was held in Leamington Spa, where 80 people attended the event, including 28 guests. The dignitaries included Lord Lieutenant of Warwickshire, High Sheriff of Warwickshire, Vice Chair of Warwick District Council, the Mayor of Leamington Spa, the Mayor of Warwick, the Police and Crime Commissioner, and the Warwickshire Police Chaplain. The event was broadcast live on ITV central news.
An event was organised in Nottingham, where 68 people attended the event, including 11 guests. The dignitaries included the Vice Lord-Lieutenant, the Sheriff of Nottingham and a St. Stevens Church representative.
Another event was organised at the Darul Amaan Mosque, Manchester, where 58 people attended the event, including four guests. The dignitaries included the Mayor of Salford. A book of condolences was signed by all. The mayor spent significant time in reflection with Lajna members and dedicated two hours of her time to the remembrance event.
An event was held in Edinburgh, where 95 people attended the event, including 61 guests. The event was hosted for the Jamaat by a local church. The dignitaries included the Lord Provost of Fife, a minister of the Church of Scotland and the NHS Fife Chaplain. An exhibition was also organised on this occasion.
Another event was held in Glasgow, where 90 people attended the event, including 10 guests. The dignitaries included the MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton, Area Director for Scotland (British Red Cross), former Councillor for Drumchapel and the chair Yorkhill and Kelvingrove Park Council. An exhibition was also organised on this occasion.
An event was held in Cardiff, where 51 people attended the event, including 4 guests. ITV Wales also covered the event. An exhibition was also organised on this occasion.
An event was held in Huddersfield, where 100 people attended, and it was covered by the local ITV News.
An event was held in Watford, where 60 Jamaat members and 10 dignitaries attended the event. The guests included the local MP, the mayor, local councillors and the deputy lieutenant and police inspector.
A summary of the press and media coverage is as follows:
A full press release was issued pre-event with quotes from Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa. A further post-event press release was issued as well. By the Grace of Allah, very good coverage was achieved with three premier global media houses (Reuters, AFP and PA) covering the main event at the Baitul Futuh Mosque.
A total reach of 20-30 million is estimated. The events were covered on 13 TV stations: Reuters, PA, AFP, ITV Central News, ITV Wales, ITV Calendar, BBC TV Midlands, BBC South East Today, Global Daily Mirror, Bol Network (Urdu), Daily Motion News, EuroNews, and One News Page. Four Radio stations also covered the events, including BBC Radio WM (West Midlands), BBC CWR (Coventry & Warwickshire), BBC Radio Kent, and Radio Jackie (Kingston). Three online newspapers also covered our events, including the Daily Mirror, Barron’s News (USA), Fife Today, Dunfermline Press, Pukaar News (Leicester), and Leamington Observer. The social media reach was 348,000.