A BRADFORD mosque is one of the first in the UK to install ground-breaking infection control technology to create a coronavirus-proof environment for prayers.

The Al Markaz ul Islami in Lidget Green, which serves as a mosque and a community hub, was approached by P4 Technology after they heard about the different taskforces who were helping during lockdown.

From its food bank to counselling staff at Bradford's hospitals, the mosque has been at the heart of the community providing support - something that caught the eye of P4's Katherine Benson.

The company gifted the installation - worth more than £40,000 - out of kindness after seeing how it could protect volunteers, visitors and teachers who were helping those in need.

The system measures the body temperature of every worshipper on arrival with the power to detect up to 20 people in just one second.

If anyone has a high temperature, they are immediately guided into a 'quarantine room' where they are checked again by trained volunteers, ordered to write down contact details and sent home if they are potentially ill.

After the first stop, visitors then walk through a sanitising station where they are sprayed with a sanitising solution.

Once in the main building, air purifiers, described as "state-of-the-art", are switched on in a bid to create a safe, clean and COVID-19 free environment.

Mufti Qazi Hassan Razza, founder of Al Markaz ul Islami said: "COVID 19 has had a disastrous impact on people’s mental health and spiritual wellbeing.

"This new technology will ensure that we can work towards making our communities feel safe, protected and at greater ease when visiting a place of worship."

Dr Usman Hanif, a member of the Al Markaz medics team and a local GP said it will help the mosque "embrace change" safely.

It has proved to be a vital during the mosque's busiest times such as Friday Prayers.

Dr Hanif said: ''It is very important that we embrace change in order to combat the ongoing threat posed by Covid-19. Where modern technology can assist in making our faith institutions safer, we should be proactive to facilitate this.

"After much suffering there is ease for people insight. The P4 system is one of many ways Al Markaz has led on to help manage the impact of this virus."

Katherine Benson of P4 Technology said: "The technology installed at the Al Markaz provides 4 layers of protection. This includes infection identification, spreading control, air purification and surface disinfection.

"Our focus is on keeping communities safe, and this fantastic system allows us to do just that. Al Markaz ul Islami was the right choice for us, it so much more than just a mosque, its multi-layer facilities make it the ideal location for this equipment."

The launch was attended by MPs Judith Cummins (Labour, Bradford South), Naz Shah (Labour, Bradford West), local councillors and the neighbourhood policing team.

Ms Cummins said: "I am extremely pleased to see that the Al Markaz ul Islami is being proactive in its approach to tackle the spread of this deadly virus and it is doing all it can to ensure the safety of the community. This system is the first of its kind in the UK and I am proud that it has been installed at a mosque in my constituency."

Meanwhile Ms Shah said: "Al Markaz ul Islami has led from the front since the outbreak of COVID-19 and again, we see they are providing a solution-based response to this unprecedented crisis. I congratulate the organisation and their team of medics for all their efforts, especially in developing this new system."