Rocket ‘lands’ at business in King’s Lynn in bid to boost charity funds

Moleys Cafe and Gift Shop, in Norfolk Street, King's Lynn, have a rocket from Iraq on their war memorial display, to try and generate interest and raise money for Bridge for Heroes and Help for Heroes. 
Wendy Graver holding the display board explaining about the rocket and Chris Graver with the Rocket ANL-161018-170530009
Moleys Cafe and Gift Shop, in Norfolk Street, King's Lynn, have a rocket from Iraq on their war memorial display, to try and generate interest and raise money for Bridge for Heroes and Help for Heroes. Wendy Graver holding the display board explaining about the rocket and Chris Graver with the Rocket ANL-161018-170530009

Staff at a café in Lynn have put up an unusual attraction in their business in the hope of raising money for charity.

Chris Graver, whose wife Wendy runs Moleys Coffee and Confectionary in Norfolk Street, installed a rocket on a wall in the shop in the hope that members of the public will come in to look and donate.

Mr Graver, who left the RAF regiment in 2010, said that when he was on operation in Iraq he managed to secure the return of the 107mm rocket.

But it wasn’t until recently that he and Mrs Graver decided what they would do with it.

It is now hoped that the installation of this rocket on a war memorial wall will help the pair fundraise for the charities Bridge for Heroes and Help for Heroes.

Mr Graver said: “It’s a bit of a rarity, there’s not another one in the country as far as we are aware.

“But we’ve now put it into our war memorial wall at the café and we’re hoping to generate some interest in it.”

He added: “Over the years, my wife Wendy has raised more than £5,000 for these causes.

“These charities are important because for most of the guys who have been injured [out on operations], or who have got prosthetic limbs, there are psychological effects which are more long-term.”

The former RAF gunner said that he brought the rocket case back from the airbase at Basra in 2008 after he had been on a six-month tour of duty with II Squadron, RAF Regiment.

He said: “The main reason for us putting the rocket in our café, along with honouring those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, is to try and open people’s eyes to just what all the armed forces had to deal with.

“But also to try and raise money for the charities by getting people to donate any unwanted items for our tombola that we have in the shop.”

Although the rocket has an important charitable purpose while being displayed in the business, there is a sombre background to the weapon which Mr Graver is keen for people to recognise.

He said: “Thousands of these rockets have been fired off by insurgents over several years, some of which found their mark and have killed personnel and civilians, destroyed equipment and damaged aircraft.”