The Exeter Mosque has a large garden at the rear. It was well maintained until six years ago when the gardener passed, and it has been neglected since. However, the pandemic, social isolation and an increase in racism locally gave the Muslim community the idea of a peace garden to promote community relations. The Mosque has always been outward looking with 5,000 non-Muslim visitors per year and one or two school visits every week prior to the pandemic. Valencia Communities Fund was approached to help fund the majority of the costs.
The garden now has a large paved main area, with centre fountain and tiled surround with raised, planted beds at the corners. A separate space for picnic tables and chairs, and a large pergola-covered way, planted with olives and lavender, and approached via an access ramp. Beyond this is a pizza oven and barbeque area. At the far end, are a series of large wooden raised beds for vegetable growing and a small children’s activity area with wooden steps and a tunnel.