Cheraman Juma Masjid
Cheraman Juma Masjid, located in Kodungallur, in Kerala’s Thrissur district is the first mosque in India. Although the Masjid is said to have been built in AD 629, historians attribute it to the 11th century. The Masjid stood as a testament to Kerala's ability to assimilate different cultures, beliefs, and traditions under one roof. The conservation of this historic Juma Masjid is being carried out under the guidance of Dr. Benny Kuriakose as part of the Muziris Heritage Project.The mosque remains unique for its Kerala style of architecture. But in 1984, to organise prayers at the mosque, concrete structures — mainly corridor and hall was built. Those extensions had completely concealed the old structure. In an effort to bring back the heritage structure, Benny Kuriakose and Associates for the Muziris Heritage Project took up the task of renovating the Cheraman Juma Masjid.
The unpleasant additions of Cheraman Masjid are being removed and conservation of the same is carried out.The older part of the mosque including the Sanctum Sanctorum is left untouched and is still preserved. Its grandeur is still kept alive by the wooden steps and ceiling .Rounded window arches, wooden ceilings, decorated niches, Mangalore tiled roof and dramatic lighting are provided to bring back the lost architectural legacy of the mosque and give a classy look with a divine feel. A basement has been added to expand the capacity of the Masjid, and to be used as Prayer hall. The old Cheraman Juma Masjid, which has endured more than a millennium, has seen several repairs and reconstructions throughout the years, affecting its original character. Restoring the historical structure's true character was not a simple undertaking. However, we hope that the Masjid will soon regain to its former splendour