A MUSLIM man wants to open an "anti-terror school" in Accrington.
Wahid Iqbal has applied for planning permission to set up an Islamic learning centre to help combat the spread of religious extremism within the community.
Mr Iqbal, (pictured) a 30-year-old father-of-three, said he had seen Islamic fundamentalists trying to spread their message of hate outside mosques in Accrington including those on Blackburn Road, Higher Antley Street, Empress Street and Grimshaw Street.
He said they had handed out leaflets which were later confiscated by mosque leaders.
Mr Iqbal said he hoped his proposed centre on Beech Street would teach Asian children that true Islam is a peace-loving religion.
It would teach children the five pillars of Islam and encourage them to do well at school and further their education.
He said: "We will talk to them about terrorism. There's no room for it in our religion.
"Two years back I went to a local mosque and saw a couple of guys handing out leaflets about the war in Iraq and 9/11. I knew some of them from my school days and growing up with them.
"There was a lot of concern in the wider community and I could see they were trying to prey on young minds. I went to the mosque and said we needed to tackle this and stop them coming to our mosque. We got that sorted out but they were just driven underground.
"It's all to do with their perception of a particular strand of Islam. But they are wrong. We need to get the true Islam out and let the children know we are peace-loving."
Plans have been submitted to Hyndburn Council for the centre that would provide after-school tuition for between 15 and 20 youngsters.
The top floor of the property would be used for offices and living accommodation, while the ground floor would be made into classrooms, a kitchen, a wash area and toilets.
Initially the intake would be children aged six to 11 but Mr Iqbal said he hoped the centre would eventually be open to older children and teenagers, who might also be taken on social activities such as camping trips.
Mr Iqbal said: "The community has got together and decided to use 37 Beech Street as a learning and community centre. It's about putting something back into the community."