You’re not from round ‘ere!!

While many note the tension between Exeter’s students and locals, Harry Penrose gives his definitive guide to where you should avoid in Exeter.

Exeter Locals Penrose

It’s unlikely to come as a surprise to anyone that there has long been a friction amongst Exeter’s inhabitants, specifically between the student population and the town locals.

As the University expands, the student share of the town population also increases. The student presence becomes more and more noticeable and demand for housing in the most sought-after areas of Exeter shoots up, causing prices to subsequently do the same.


Couple this with the trail of destruction left up and down Pennsylvania Road every week night by student club-goers, and we begin to explain the cause of this animosity, experienced first-hand by many undergraduates during their tenure at our beloved university.

Please make no mistake, I am in no way looking to endorse the stereotype tarring all Devonians as surly, hostile inhabitants of the past; but merely speculating as to what might have caused such a widespread sentiment. It is also useful to highlight a number of ‘no go areas’ which should be avoided by students hoping to avoid bad vibes. So here it goes, your definitive guide to venues you should steer clear of as an Exeter student:

1. The Chevalier – Seeing as the Chev is, in fact, a Wetherspoons, you could be forgiven for thinking that this is a safe bet. You only have to walk past late at night to gain a feel for the sort of experience you would be letting yourself in for should you climb the stairs and head inside, with group brawls between grown women apparently serving as the order of the day in this fine establishment.

2. The King Billy – The Bill is seen as a ‘Mecca’ for many town locals in Exeter, with the place brimming with rowdy townsfolk on the weekends. The stares of hostility that any ‘Barbour and chinos clad’ Exetah archetype might receive upon entrance are similar to those experienced by a whore in the Vatican. Words only go so far as to describing the extent of discomfort experienced by losers of danger-fives required to venture inside for a silent pint. And for God’s sake don’t get claimed on joining them for karaoke.

3. The Locomotive Inn – While I’ve personally never been inside, just glancing at the online reviews of this place paints a rather vivid picture of what you might expect from a night spent in here. The pub itself garnered an average rating of 3.6/10 while one customer had this to say: “Used to live opposite this place and only went in a handful of times. Plenty of good cider, but this has to balanced with the number of middle-aged women lying vomiting in the road outside.”

4. Anywhere on a Saturday night! – Not only will you be hit with a near £6 entrance fee and extortionate drinks prices, the tacit agreement eliciting that Saturday nights belong to locals will leave you feeling sorely out of place. On Saturdays, your usual sure fire chat encompassing degree subjects, societies, hometowns and mutual friends will inevitably fail you, as you come to experience the same level of conversational ineptitude as a man having his hair cut.