With over 25,000 students and staff on its campuses in London, Queen Mary University of London is proud of its diverse multicultural population and is committed to encouraging religious understanding, freedom of speech and open social interaction.
Facilities and Services
Our faith facilities at QMUL are places where people of different faiths can meet.
Prayer and Contemplation Rooms
The Multi-Faith Centre is situated in the Students' Union Hub at the Mile End campus (number 34 on the Mile End Campus map [PDF 1.5 MB]). Its two large rooms and adjacent washing facilities are designed as places of prayer, worship and reflection and is shared by students and staff of all faiths and beliefs. Rooms may be booked by individual faith societies at specific times. You can check the times available on the timetable.
Some weeks Muslim staff and students are able to meet for Friday prayers in the Octagon (number 19a on the Mile End Campus map [PDF 1.5 MB]).
Smaller contemplation rooms are also available on the ground floor of the Mile End Library. These rooms are not bookable by groups or individuals but are available throughout the opening hours of the library (including the 24/7 opening period).
A prayer room at Whitechapel is located in the Students’ Union on the second floor (number 3 on the Whitechapel Campus map [PDF 1MB]). For more information about this facility contact the Students’ Union at su-BLSA.Reception@qmul.ac.uk.
Provision of space for Friday Prayers
QMUL understands that Friday is a special day for Muslims and is committed to using all reasonable endeavours to provide a place for students and staff to meet for Friday prayers if a suitable space is available. The current constraints on our estate means that Octagon in the Queens’ Building has been identified as the only compatible space that offers a flat area large enough to accommodate Friday prayers safely. No formal booking is made in advance but the Octagon is made available for prayer as and when that is possible, and on the understanding that it sometimes needs to be set up on Fridays for weekend events, and is also used extensively by QMUL to support internal activities e.g. exams, open days, celebrations as well as for commercial events. However, when there are no bookings for other activities in the Octagon it is available for prayer on Fridays between 12 – 2pm.
- Communicating with student representatives
The procedure laid out below is designed to keep student representatives informed via a notification of two weekly availability of the Octagon via the Estates and Facilities Directorate.
Estates and Facilities Directorate:
- Passes information on the availability of the Octagon every Friday for the following two weeks via email (email@example.com) to the Head Brother.
- They also hold the 12-2 slot if the Octagon is available once within the two week window (if it is free).
- They respond to queries from the society via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Other options previously explored
QMUL, QMSU and other partners also investigated the potential use of the stage area of the Great Hall on a Friday if the Octagon was not available but despite the time invested, this is not possible for the following reasons:
- It is booked throughout the year for teaching so is configured with all the seating in place.
- During the current academic year the hall will be used for teaching until 3.00pm each Friday as it offers the largest capacity space for lectures at Mile End.
- The stage area is considered unsafe for more than 100 people at a time.
QMSU have also investigated the possibility of using the sports hall in QMotion as an alternative to the Octagon but this has also been found to be problematic as the current usage for sports activity is tied into funding arrangements with external partners.
St Benet's (number 23 on the Mile End Campus map [PDF 1.5 MB]) is the name of QMUL's long established Christian Chaplaincy. The chaplaincy building on the Mile End Campus is owned by the Church of England and is open from 9 to 5 Monday to Friday during term-time.
The building has two main areas: the Chapel, which is a beautiful grade II listed building available for prayer and reflection and the lounge which is a relaxing meeting place for all students.
There are regular services of prayer and worship in the Chapel as well as other activities in the lounge. Please visit St Benet's to see the what is happening.
Chaplains are available for students and staff of all faiths and none. They support students and staff in any way they can, as well as engaging with spiritual aspects of university life.
QMUL is currently served by a small team of experienced chaplains:
Father Brian O'Mahony, the Roman Catholic Chaplain, based part-time at Mile End.
For pastoral or spiritual support from any other faith community or information about local places of worship, please contact us and we'll do our best to help.
Policies and Guidelines
- QMUL's Community Charter
- Freedom of Expression Policy [PDF]
- Flexible working and work/life balance policies from HR to staff
- HR equality policies for staff covering equal opportunities, dignity at work and a Ramadan and Eid guidelines
- Equality and Diversity Steering Group