British singer Yusuf Islam is struggling to realise his plans for an Islamic community centre, and he blames the September 11 (01) terrorist attacks for turning investors against the scheme.

Islam, formerly known as CAT STEVENS before he became a Muslim in 1977, has come under fire from residents in the Brent area of London for failing to follow through his plans to turn a 1906 Church into a modern centre comprising prayer rooms, a block of flats and a medical area.

But the one-time pop star is convinced local opposition stems wholly from prejudice and ignorance.

Islam's spokesman DANIEL GORDON says, "This is all about Islamophobia. They were even critical of the fact that the sketches for the plans showed people wearing hijabs.

"The delays are down to the fact that it has been hard to get funding following the 11 September attacks."