Work to turn Hanley church into mosque continues, council find ‘no evidence’ of grave disturbance

St John's Church Hanley St John's Church Hanley

Work to turn St John’s Church in Hanley into a mosque will continue after Stoke-on-Trent City Council finds ‘no evidence’ of graves being disturbed. 

In August 2023, plans were accepted to convert the Grade II-listed building in Hanley into a mosque and community centre.

As renovation work began in September, a video began to circulate online that showed gravestones being damaged. 

This video led to numerous objections being levelled at the renovation plans, with some describing the damage to the headstones as ‘disgusting’. 

The church, which dates back to 1788, was used up until the 1980s. Following its closure, exhumations were carried out. However, it is believed that human remains are still on site and that the current renovation work will disturb them. 

In response to the complaints lodged regarding the viral video, Stoke-on-Trent City Council visited the site to look for evidence of graves being damaged or remains being disturbed. 

A spokesperson for the council stated: “Although it is probable that graves are present within the area around the church, there is no evidence to indicate that any have been disturbed.” 

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