Carlisle United host the city's first Open Iftar to celebrate the month of Ramadan

Muslims from across the region came together to break their fast at Brunton Park Credit: Mohammed Dhalech

People gathered at Carlisle United's Brunton Park to break their fast and celebrate the sacred month of Ramadan.

Iftar is the first meal of the day for those who are fasting and comes just after the call to the Maghrib prayer at sunset.

Imam Abdul Rashid said: “I'm ecstatic and overwhelmed, it's a heartwarming concept.

"I'm really taken aback that Carlisle United would reach out, we didn't reach out to them, they pushed and pushed to get this through.

"We’re very pleased, a lot of hard work has gone in behind the scenes from the team, the managers and everyone else.

“As a representative of the community I feel overwhelmed and I hope it’s the first of many to come.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion officer at Carlisle United, Nigel Davidson, said: “It’s been a pleasure and a privilege to host this.

"There’s a growing Muslim community in Carlisle and we want them to come and enjoy league football and Carlisle.

“We’re really proud to engage with the Muslim supporters in the city and Muslim people and really proud to have them here tonight to break their fast.

“We would hope to be able to do this again in the future and make this an annual event.

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar and is the holy month of fasting.

Muslims fast from dawn to sunset during the month, which this year began on 11 March and will last for 30 days until 9 April.

The holy month is a time of spiritual reflection for Muslims and during this month, they do not eat or drink during daylight hours.

  • Imam Rashid explains the importance of iftar

An iftar meal is the most important meal of the day for Muslims, as it is the meal which follows a whole day of fasting.

It is normally their second meal of the day and the main meal of the day for those who are fasting.

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To know...