Reports suggest that a Mosque is to be added to the set of Eastenders. According to a story in The Sun, the soap opera’s set is having a £15 million overhaul, and “a prominent” place of worship for Muslims will be on a road leading into Albert Square is to be a new addition.
The BBC has said that a final decision has to be decided. “The new locations for the exterior set build are still to be decided,” it said. “The new set will better reflect the East End of London on screen as well as increase the potential for storylines.”
There are large Muslim communities in East London, in areas like Whitechapel, where the fictional London borough of Walford is supposed to be near. For instances, the 2011 Census found that 38% of the borough of Tower Hamlets were Muslim, and it’s good to see 21st century London accurately being reflected onscreen. The Sun also reports that an upcoming storyline will feature the radicalisation of a character by “Muslim fanatics”. Radicalisation is a very real issue in London right now, but we’d really hope that any attempt to deal with it is sensisitvely handled, and doesn’t rely on clichéd stereotyping.
The soap’s first Muslim family, the Masoods, were introduced in 2007. The BBC have said that there is “no current plans” to include them in a radicalisation storyline.
[via The Guardian]