Great British Menu 2022 chefs: Dave Critchley, North West heat

The Staff Canteen

Executive chef at Lu Ban Liverpool Dave Critchley is one of four chefs representing the North West on Great British Menu 2022

Series 17 of the competition starts on February 1st 2022 on BBC Two at 8pm and will air at the same time every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for eight weeks.

The North West heat will take place on February 8th, 9th and 10th. Dave is facing chefs Caroline MartinsSam Lomas and Stevie Lamb. This is Dave's second appearance on the show, having taken part for the first time in 2021. Before making it to the judge's chamber, the chefs' food is to be judged by veteran chefs Lisa Goodwin-Allen, who appeared on the show in series 5 back in 2010 and took a dish to the banquet, as well as Niall Keating, who competed in 2020 and was crowned the series' 'champion of champions.' 

As per the programme's new format which starts each heat with four chefs (as opposed to three, which was the case until series 15), Caroline was eliminated after the fish course. Stevie was the next to go, leaving Dave and Sam to face judges Tom Kerridge, Nisha Katona and Ed Gamble, as well as guest judge Sue Cleaver on Thursday, 10th February 2022.

After cooking for the judges, 26 year-old Head chef at Glebe House Devon Sam Lomas won the North West heat, giving him the opportunity to represent the region in the finals.


The Childwall-born chef studied art and was midway through an illustration and graphics degree in North Wales before deciding to be a chef. 

Over the course of his career, Dave has worked in Liverpool's top restaurants, from Alma de Cuba and Noble House to The London Carriage Works at Hope Street Hotel (alongside chef Paul Askew of The Art School).

Dave now oversees the operations across the Lu Ban Restaurant Group as the company's executive head chef director.

He is the first non-Chinese apprentice to Master chef Zhengxi Wu, who selected him on the basis of his skills demonstrated when travelling to China together, working in restaurants around the country to hone his skills. 

In 2021, Dave won the City of Liverpool Business Awards Business Hero of the Year. 

This year, his Great British Menu dishes will pay tribute for his home city of Liverpool's broadcasting legends.

Full name

David Joseph Critchley


Dave, China Dave, Digz, Critch, Asian Dave, Chef


39, born 27/01/1983

Place of birth / residence


Relationship status /wife/ children

Married to Karen A Critchley father to one son



Type of chef (restaurant, hotel, development chef, etc.)

Executive head chef of a new restaurant brand

Favourite type of cuisine

Has to be Chinese

Path to becoming a chef

Self-taught after training to be a Children’s book illustrator

Past and present place of work

Lu Ban (Liverpool), Australasia (Manchester), The London Carriage Works , Hope Street Hotel (Liverpool). Alma de Cuba group (Liverpool) Noble House (Liverpool), 52 Lark Lane (Liverpool), Neighbourhood (Liverpool) The Everest hotel (Maghull), The halfway house (Liverpool) first job

Personal and professional mentors / role models 

My parents and the many good chefs I’ve worked with over 23 years.

Guilty pleasure dish

Pepperoni pizza

Best / worst thing about being a chef

The best thing is the adrenaline of service, the worst thing is chef's arse.

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 11th February 2022

Great British Menu 2022 chefs: Dave Critchley, North West heat