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Date set for Hindu temple's opening

A £1.6 million Hindu temple that has been 18 years in the making will finally open in August.


A £1.6 million Hindu temple that has been 18 years in the making will finally open in August.

The Shree Krishna Mandir temple in Old Meeting Street, West Bromwich, will have a week-long opening ceremony from August 22 to 30 - culminating in a procession of 10,000 people.

The procession will go from the temple to Carters Green and back, and an application to close the road has been submitted to Sandwell Council.

An intricately carved archway and wall, which will be fitted around the building fronting the road, are now set to be shipped from India during the next three weeks.

The archway alone has taken 21 people eight months to craft. It will be the final piece of the project which has spanned two decades and created one of the Black Country's most intricate buildings.

President of the temple Chandu Patel said: "We have built this to last for 1,000 years.

"This project has been completely funded by the community; we haven't had a single grant to help.

"We are expecting people to come over from around the world for the opening parade, which will take place on the bank holiday. That day, the building will be open to the public, and everyone can come in and have a look around. We have been planning this for 18 years, and this is the only temple of its kind outside of India."

Crafted from sandstone hewn from a mountain in the Gujarat region of India, numbered blocks have been shipped from the sub-continent and put together like a jigsaw.

Stonemasons carved by hand the intricate patterns which adorn both the outside and inside of the building, and panels have been left blank, to be carved throughout the coming years.

Marble elephant statues and fountains will also be installed ready for the opening ceremony. The temple replaces a listed building which burnt down in an arson attack in 1992.

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