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Single In the City - City Circle Talk

City Circle are holding a rather interesting talk on Valentines Day where the panel of speakers will explore the issue of singledom and complexities facing British Muslims looking for love at a time when Muslim women and men in their 30s and 40s are finding it increasingly difficult to find suitable partners.

After the talk, we can get together and goto Melur restaurant for a bite to eat and discuss the talk and just socialise.

From Muslim marriage meet ups to online forums the panel will share findings from their work and academic research as well as personal reflections on the search for love and marriage in modern multicultural Britain. The discussion will explore alternatives paths Muslims have chosen in seeking partners. A short segment of documentary "Hidden Heart" will also be screened. This is the work of filmmaker Zara Afzal and producer Christopher Hird chronicling the lives of Muslim women who find love outside their own culture or faith.


Dr Fauzia Ahmad is a sociologist whose research and publications have focussed on representations of British Muslim women and their experiences in higher education, employment and social welfare. Her current research is exploring British Muslims experiences and difficulties in getting married and staying married. She is currently based in the Dept of Political Science at University College London and is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship at Bristol University.

Zara Afzal has been developing documentaries shortly upon completing her degree in 2003. Her first project in development ‘Kafirs of the Hindukush’ was inspired by the 1923 field work of Georg Morgenstierne in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Iran. The research work had led her to work closely with National Library of Norway and Pakistan. Over the years Zara has worked in development with independent production companies as well as developing her own personal projects under Zygo Films. In addition to this Zara has worked as visiting Media Lecturer in colleges in London and the South East.

Mizan Raja is co-Director of Islamic Circles which organizes a wide range of Islamic activities across London and outside. In particular, they initiated the project 13 years ago, which continues to serve the community.

Tehmina Kazi took up the position of Director of British Muslims for Secular Democracy in May 2009. Tehmina was shortlisted for Cosmopolitan Magazine’s “Ultimate Women of the Year Awards 2011” in the “Campaigner” category for her work. She also won an “Outstanding Achievement” Award at the Syeda Fatima Interfaith Conference at the House of Lords in June 2012. Prior to joining BMSD, she was a Project Officer at the Equality and Human Rights Commission, where she worked on a ground-breaking inquiry into the Human Rights Act and its impact on public service delivery, undertaking research, writing policy briefings, facilitating focus groups and interviewing victims of human rights violations. 

Free entrance. All welcome. No reservation needed. Prayer space available. Street parking free from 18:30. If you have any questions, please contact  [masked]

Many thanks to Rukhsana for highlighting this talk - may Allah reward you abundantly.

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  • Kazi R.

    Oh I really missed the event as I wasn't in the group before :(

    March 7, 2014

  • Rukhsana

    Thanks to everyone who ignored the bad weather and came to the event. Apologies for the shortage of seats, more attendees than expected! Would be great to see you all back at another talk, inshallah. Tea and biscuits always available if you're ever at a loose end on a Friday night :)

    3 · February 15, 2014

    • Rika

      Thanks for organising this. It would be good to find out whether muslims from other European cities face the same issues or whether this applies to London only.

      1 · February 16, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      Hi, I'm from Melbourne in Australia and from what I can see, the same issues are faced by the Muslim community, btw the talk was good, I wouldn't mind attending more panel discussions

      February 16, 2014

  • Ruby R.

    I feel the talk highlighted alot of issues and concerns many are already aware of in our today. It's all a case of what is relative to one personally. The female perspective on these issues was intellectually sound and fair on the whole. And the little documentary was positive in the sharing of personal experiences. People do need to see such views and hear these experiences, as it is all very real and true to life. Shame about the quality of the audio, probably the speakers.

    I was rather perplexed by the male speaker, as he did contradict himself a few times. Some of his view for me, were just unreal!

    February 15, 2014

    • Nawaz A.

      Hi everyone, With regards to the bill, It wasn't easy for myself and Khurum to round up money from 50+ people but we managed it in the end. No one skipped payment but rather someone didn't apparently hear the me shout pay up 10 times :) They paid in the end. So all the money was accounted for in the end, actually there was £9 extra, i will give it to a charity collection .

      1 · February 15, 2014

    • Ruby R.

      Nawaz, I appreciate your input in trying to clear up what you feel is not the case here. Clearly this was not so after the meal, and certainly I was under the impression by what was being said yesterday, one or two did leave without making payment. I understand it was not easy for you to collect monies, and thank you for managing this in the end. It did cause stress to you, and this showed which leads me to say it's a shame people are made to feel uncomfortable in such a situation. The person or people who apparently did not hear you should have been paying more attention (you shouted out over 10 times). I find it baffling they did not hear you. Bit irresponsible really. There were hardly many people left at the end of the night, and the confusion over the monies still remained.

      February 15, 2014

  • Nawaz A.

    oh if anyone wants to hear a patchy audio recording you can find it here -

    February 15, 2014

  • Naz

    An honest discussion on current issues that single Muslims face today in trying to meet someone for marriage. A bigger venue and more seats would have been better and encouraged some mingling after without the chaos that ensued at the end in trying to get out. Overall a good discussion though and I'm glad I went.

    February 15, 2014

  • salma

    Great talk, highly interesting and thought provoking debate

    February 15, 2014

  • dr a.

    very interesting,i. will attend again.we should change e mails and numbers,so we can stay connected.very nice.thanks to everyone

    February 14, 2014

  • Ahmed

    Good debate, identified current issues but unfortunately didn't really give any real solutions.

    February 14, 2014

  • Asma

    Running 20min late :(

    1 · February 14, 2014

    • Nav

      Wicked I'm not the only one.

      February 14, 2014

  • Danish

    Sorry I can't make it anymore. Inshallah next time...

    February 14, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    super sorry I have to cancel.. Enjoy everyone! :)

    February 14, 2014

  • Ghazala

    Hi, so sorry but will not be able to make it in time...was soo looking forward to it aswell :-(

    February 14, 2014

  • seed

    I am in my 40s and unemployed. Do you think I'll find a wife tonight? Not sure if I should go through the hasstle of buying a travelcard etc for tonight...

    February 14, 2014

  • Hisham

    I will attend

    February 14, 2014

  • Shumi

    'Melur' good malaysian restaurant choice for after.. Lamb chops are yummy with crispy fried chillies on top ..:-) yum yum

    5 · February 12, 2014

    • dr a.

      i don't eat meat ,i only eat fish,is that would cause a problem.? also i am very happy to meet up earlier.if anyone interested please do let me know

      February 13, 2014

    • Sajid

      Salaam, the restaurant have a rather delightful range of fish, prawn and squid dishes so its perfectly fine

      1 · February 13, 2014

  • Touseef

    Is anyone planning to meet before?

    February 13, 2014

  • M kamran A.

    sorry Guys i would love to this join event. but unfortunately i have to cover a wedding event in slough.

    February 13, 2014

  • dr a.

    that seems wonderful group.

    February 13, 2014

  • Serena

    Sounds really interesting and a great panel lined up!

    1 · February 11, 2014

  • Sabira

    Is this talk going to be recorded at all?. I would so love to attend but I am taking my elderly father to the airport.

    3 · February 11, 2014

  • Rukhsana

    Tx for the plug Sajid :)

    1 · February 10, 2014

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