Inside the world of UK Muslim women

A major survey shows most want to marry their soulmates and enjoy high street fashion, while keeping a delicate balance with their Islamic values. She wants to marry her soulmate, shops in Primark, TK Maxx and Topshop, and dreams of starting her own business. Meet the typical Muslim woman in Britain today. A thousand women throughout the country have responded to the biggest lifestyle study of Muslim women undertaken in the UK. It appears to show that Muslim women have established a delicate balance between a desire to live a contemporary lifestyle and tap into consumer trends while sticking to values underpinning the Islamic guide to life. The survey shows that 58 per cent of Muslim women do not think the racial background of a partner matters, although two-thirds believe it is very important for their man to be knowledgeable about Islam. Success to 37 per cent of women means being a good Muslim, while 32 per cent say it is about combining work with family life, with 52 per cent wanting to run their own businesses. When asked which Muslim causes were most important, 70 per cent of women said matters affecting Muslims in their own community or in the UK were a priority against 21 per cent who said that the Middle East was the most important issue facing Muslims today. Talat Ahmed, 32, from Redbridge in east London, is a married with a three-year-old daughter and works in human resources for a charity. She said: ‘I become so English when the Rugby World Cup is on. We’re British and we love it here. Nick Mathiason and Huma Qureshi report.