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A familiar face shares his journey to the Dragon’s Heart

Date 30.04.2020

Before the Covid-19 pandemic struck, you’ll have seen Head Chef, David Lively, cooking up a storm on campus. When the world as we knew it changed, he quickly took his culinary skills to support the national effort to fight Covid-19.

The Cardiff Principality Stadium, home of welsh rugby, underwent a huge transformation to become a field hospital in a matter of weeks. In early April, Chef Lively was drafted to the frontline to establish the catering facilities to feed and water the extraordinary effort.

Aptly named the Dragon’s Heart Hospital, Head Chef David was at the helm, establishing the kitchens and feeding the small army of trades people and forces personnel, who in just a few weeks transformed an iconic sporting stadium into a hospital, capable of caring for nearly 2,000 Covid-19 patients.

Speaking about his journey to the dragon’s kitchen, he said: “I know how important good food is for the body and mind, that’s why I wanted to use my skills to support the effort to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

“As I arrived in Cardiff, I quickly set to work with deliveries of supplies, and setting up the kitchen spaces. Once we were up and running, I headed up one of four teams of chefs cooking three meals each day to feed the work force. Depending on the work happening, it ranged from feeding 750 to 2,000 people per day.

“It was such a transformation seeing a stadium develop into a hospital. Everyone was pulling together and getting what need to be done, done. It was an amazing team effort, even with the challenges of working safely and staying socially distanced.

“I’m so proud to have played my part and supported the Covid-19 battle. The demand for chefs has changed now that the hospital is up and running, so I’m no longer needed, but I wouldn’t hesitate to head back to the frontline again to do my bit.”