Of course Pop World is terrible – that’s what makes it so great

You love it really

Last week Pop World was voted the worst club in the UK in a national student survey. It beat Forum in Nottingham, Space in Leeds and even Acapulco in Halifax to claim the unenviable title. This comes as no surprise. Anyone who has ever stepped inside one of the 50 odd Pop Worlds in the country will confirm how bad and tasteless the whole thing is.

But to rank Pop World as the worst establishment in the country is to completely miss the point. The club’s shortcomings are all part of its enduring charm. For here is a planet where you can forget about the outside world and, in many ways, experience everything great about British clubbing.

It’s an unpretentious haven where everyone is welcome

Most clubs are too expensive, too busy, too exclusive – or a mixture of all three. Not so at Pop World. Anyone is welcome here. Barriers are pulled down between innocent freshers on Harry Potter socials, rugby lads, weekend warriors in scoop neck tees, battered members of Kathy’s mad hen doo, old men wearing jeans and sheux and the indie heroes playing air guitar and bouncing around trying to get a mosh pit going to Kaiser Chiefs. You do what you like and don’t have to pretend to be enjoying some shit house night trying to look cool. Instead there’s an inclusive, peaceful harmony where everyone gets on because, deep down, they share the same desire: to smother themselves in cheese with their pals.

popworld

The crew

You know exactly what you’re getting and it delivers every time

A night out in Pop World is simple. There’s no queue, no rushing to get in, no begging around on FB for an overpriced ticket to see a bang average DJ. Amid the chaos and confusion of everyday university life, the club serves as a secure oasis where you can push pretenses to one side, forget about deadlines and sing along to Spice Girls without judgment. Then stuff your face with cheesy chips. Or free toast.

The laminated drinks menus are brilliant

The sticky drinks menus at the bar tell you all you need to know about the place. Forget fancy gins and overpriced shots, the only things on offer here are bargain basement deals for pints, Sourz shots, Woo Woo cocktails and cheap vodka. Give me your finest pint of Carling, please sir.

Everyone is always hammered

Like, literally everyone.

pop world girls

So. Much. Fun

The music really isn’t that bad

Of course, there will always be the unbearably cringe tunes. But there’s also the overlooked classics from the 70s, 80s and 90s that bring everyone together. For every song by Abba or Aqua there’s a banger from Human League, New Order, Bowie or Queen. And if you can’t get down to Sean Paul then you have no soul. You just can’t find such an inclusive, time-hopping playlist anywhere else. The interaction also sets the club apart because, really, where else can you do the conga or Macarena with a smashed stranger on a Thursday night?

popworld dance

Put your hands in the air like you just don’t care

The DJs are the biggest heroes in the world

Old, bald, sweaty and dressed in criminally bad short sleeved shirts, the Pop World DJs are some of the best humans on this planet. Want to make a request? No problem. Have a lollipop for your trouble. Fancy going behind the decks and pretending to have a mix? Come on down. These are the forgotten legends, the people who soundtrack weddings and functions and school discos with the sole purpose of giving you the time of your life.

popworld dj

It’s the ultimate nostalgia trip

Best of all, Pop World allows you to relive your NOW 65 glory days. These were simpler, happier times when you had no worries and Chelsea Dagger soundtracked your life. For a few moments on the bright, revolving dance floor, you can close your eyes, forget about the stresses of being grown up and bask in the warm glow of that childish nostalgia. It takes you to a happy, unpretentious place with your friends where you’re free to be silly and do what you like – everything, in short, that makes clubbing so much fun.

More
The Tab