Hereford residents can now help veterans by enjoying a cuppa in a coffee bar run by FirstLight Trust, a charity helping former members of the armed forces and emergency services adjust to civilian life…

The new Sharpe’s establishment was officially opened by the High Sheriff of Herefordshire James Hervey-Bathurst Esq., CBE DL with the Lord Mayor of Hereford Councillor Kath Hey in attendance. With delicious home-made cakes and coffees, Sharpe’s is a welcoming spot for the public and veterans of any rank or age.

“Many ex-military can feel isolated once they leave the forces or emergency services,” says Dorinda Wolfe Murray of FirstLight Trust. “So we run hubs which include coffee bars where veterans and civilians can relax. A warm welcome is guaranteed and every penny raised helps our work in giving back veterans pride and value.”

Sharpe’s on Broad Street is named after the Rifleman played on TV by Sean Bean. It offers exclusive coffee roasts, Yorkshire Tea and delicious home-baked treats such as scones and cakes. The Hereford hub is the charity’s newest, joining a network of support stretching from Scarborough to Lancaster, Gosport to Hawick. Events such as modelling clubs, book groups and quiz nights have already been well received by the local community.

The hub was only made possible by the generosity of a number of charitable trusts and foundations. The Utley Foundation provided funds towards renovations and the coffee machine. Other vital renovations funds came from the Clive & Sylvia Richards Charity, Beatrice Laing Trust, E F Bulmer Benevolent Fund, Souter Charitable Trust, The Rowlands Trust, and The Guyll-Lleng Charitable Trust. The Eveson Charitable Trust provided funds towards a support worker.

“We’ve been so grateful for the support of our donors, neighbours and fellow veteran charities and organisations,” adds Dorinda. “The cherry on the cake has been ex-SAS operative and best-selling author Chris Ryan posting on Instagram that we had “the best brew in Hereford.” We’d love to encourage as many Hereford locals as possible to follow in Chris’s footsteps and pop in to find out more!”