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But while the city may in some senses be thriving, with a £24.5m City Park, Westfield's £275m Broadway development, and the City Centre Growth Zone bringing in £15m of capital investment, there is an awkward silence at the centre of Bradford's Muslim community: Where are the women?Step forward Bana Gora, co-founder and chief executive of the Muslim Woman's Council, who is leading the charge to open Bradford's first female-led mosque within the next three years.

Driving to the wind-whipped park we passed shut up warehouses full of cleaning products, a dismal suburban pub called The Gallopers Sunday Carvery and shop after shop full of mobility scooters.The only places with any form of life were the sari shops, green grocers, curry houses and newsagents.Bradford, without its Muslim community, would barely be Bradford at all."It will be all-inclusive and fully accessible to all communities both Muslims and non-Muslims," Gora tells me over the phone from her office. We're hoping to have adequate bed spaces for women, refugees and asylum seekers.There will be counseling, support services, and a space to discuss important issues like domestic violence.We're told that men and women are equal in the eyes of God so, surely, they should have equal access to the place of worship".

Then there was the spat with Naz Shah, the female Labour Member of Parliament for Bradford West.

Bradford has the largest proportion of people of Pakistani ethnic origin in England, making up 20.3% of the city's population, while nearly one quarter of the city identify as Muslim.

And yet, argues Gora, the facilities available to female Muslims are simply not up to scratch. But the majority--and we carried out quite an extensive audit over the last few years--are letting women down." The problem, Gora argues, is historical.

"The message read to the effect that she was sorry, she misunderstood, she was misinformed and if it's an all-inclusive space she's fully behind it.

We've asked her to issue a public retraction and we're still waiting for that."Gora is not, she insists, trying to cause controversy. Which is why, perhaps a little surprisingly, the new mosque will have a male imam.

It will be funded by women, run by women and used primarily by women.