Tonight's offering includes braised beef and onions with mash

Oxford Fine Dining has stepped up to the mark by providing 50 meals a day to frontline NHS staff self isolating in Oxford’s Linton Lodge Hotel.

Numbers of both meals and staff are expected to rise significantly over the next few days and weeks, but Sue Randall, MD of Oxford Fine Dining, said her catering company was committed indefinitely.

“The NHS STAFF are the heroes and we want to support them by ensuring they have a good, healthy, well cooked meal waiting for them when they get back from work, delivered to their door by hotel staff and served in our scrummy boxes.”

She said: “We are delighted to provide meals for the frontline NHS staff battling to contain the coronavirus pandemic in Oxfordshire.

“Our team has been amazing and donated their time and expertise for free to provide the meals currently required for staff returning to The Linton Lodge Hotel where they are self isolating.

“Our head chef Sean Ducie has made a two week menu plan, so that NHS staff can look forward to everything from a Sunday roast to a lamb tagine – quick and easy meals to heat up at any time of the day or night, which we then deliver on a daily basis.

Oxford Fine Dining’s head chef Sean Ducie preparing meals for the NHS frontline staff

Tonight’s offering for example includes braised beef and onions with mash and vegetables or maple roasted celeriac with mash and vegetables.

“We fully expect the numbers of NHS staff and meals required to rise significantly but are ready for the task ahead and will help whoever possible during this crisis.

“We are fully committed to continue to provide the same service indefinitely until the coronavirus pandemic is over.”

Oxford Fine Dining, which is based in Weston On The Green also donated 4000 bottles of water to NHS staff last week, and provides the meals at cost price while the Oxford Hospitals Charity covers the ingredients and delivery costs.

water donation

This is usually Oxford Fine Dining’s busiest time, summer weddings making up a third of their bookings. Yet in the past few weeks the Oxford catering company has suffered disastrously from cancelled events.

But Sue and her staff have risen to the challenge and put all their efforts into feeding the NHS frontline staff instead.

“These are staff who can’t return home for fear of infecting their families who may be at high risk, so are choosing to self isolate in a hotel instead, to enable them to go back to work on the frontline,” Sue tells me.

“They are the heroes and we want to support them by ensuring they have a good, healthy, well cooked meal waiting for them when they get back from work, delivered to their door by the hotel staff and served in our scrummy boxes.”

As for Oxford Fine Dining, Sue Randall is resigned but determined to survive the current crisis. “We had just taken on two new chefs and a new wedding planner and were booked right up to capacity. Our showcase dinner earlier this month was an enormous success. Things couldn’t have been going any better. But I haven’t built up this company over 13 years to just let it fold in 13 weeks.

The fleet of Oxford Fine Dining vans now delivering meals to NHS front-line staff

“But we are lucky. We had made contingency plans. We had no idea it would be anything on this scale, and in the meantime our team has been amazing in helping the NHS workers in any way they can.”

To make a donation to the Oxford Hospitals Charity go to https://www.hospitalcharity.co.uk/Appeal/staffsupport

For more details on Oxford Fine Dining go to https://www.oxfordfinedining.co.uk

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