What’s the worst night out in Nottingham?

They all shut too early anyway

Nottingham: a city famed for its gun crime, Robin Hood and eclectic student nightlife.

But, for all the hype about a big night out on the town, are our clubs actually any good?

Do the edgy kids really enjoy the blinding lasers and unrelenting bass of Stealth? Has anyone ever gone to Oceana and not got lost within thirty seconds? And is it truly possible to ignore that Ocean smell?

From the gropey and overcrowded to the dingy and neglected, it’s time for YOU to decide, once and for all, the title of Nottingham’s Worst Night Out.


Getting tickets is a military operation akin to registering for Glastonbury. If you happen to find a glimmer of hope on Buy and Sell you can bet that it’s for double the price and you’re going in at 9:30. You could queue but be prepared to lose a toenail, the will to live, and to get there three hours before you want to get in. If trying to find a patch of dancefloor among the hordes of sports societies segregated into their various costume themes, eagerly clinking VK’s to music only slightly less shit than Ocean is your thing, then head upstairs. Alternatively stay downstairs for perhaps the sweatiest club experience of your life in BCL.

There is an allusive third room but nobody goes in there. It might even be a myth. The gritty smoking area does provide a chance to get to know your fellow Wednesday night warriors, but upon re-entry the indisputable force of the clique takes over and all must return to their designated corners for the night. Inevitably you will have one jaeger too many, but fear not there’s plenty of toilets to choose from and only 75 per cent of them are already covered in sick. Rest assured yours will be welcomed with open arms shrouded in the solidarity behind the student tactical chunder.



Once upon a time when you lived in your shit hometown, you went out to an Oceana. Be it Kingston, Watford, Cardiff or even Birmingham it formed the basis of your clubbing experience. You went to Oceana Nottingham expecting the same transformative experience. But instead of your mates and jagers and a decent time, it’s sadness, terrible people and probably Zane Lowe.


It’s hard to know where to begin with Forum. I first stepped in there on my very first night in Nottingham. I watched huge locals scream the lyrics to Mr Brightside, I left at 3am. Since then, Forum has been a weird masochistic fortnightly ritual. No-one really enjoys Forum. No-one likes the rude bouncers that will just decide it’s time for you to go home. No-one likes the weird square podiums in the middle of the dance floor. No-one likes the weird booth bit to the right of the long bar, because it’s right next to the toilets. The DJ is awful, the company terrible and there’s always an engineering student holding a bottle of grey goose and standing on the stage. Why.

Market Bar

The inside of a gregg’s pasty, Marbella, the face of the sun. All things that are a more reasonable temperature than the inside of Market Bar. The drinks are expensive, you are rammed in till standing on booth seats is your only available option and the smoking area is the most effort to get to of any in Nottingham.


The most monotonous place in Nottingham, if you though Coco Tang was pretentious for all the bodycon dresses and tweed blazers holding cocktail glasses, Stealth is just as bad for all the rolled up sleeves, Hype t-shirts and vintage Adidas jackets. It’s a farce, one big expensive pretentious mindfuck – and your head will never recover. You’ll see things coming out of the wall wherever you look – the lighting doesn’t help your state. And the drinks, if you buy them, are beyond expensive.


Does anyone really like rubbing into sweaty topless freshers as they swing their shirt round their head? No one knows the words to the Baywatch song for most of uni anyway. Your night may be slightly better now there’s a cash machine in there, but your bank account will hate you. You’ll spend far too much of shots and VKs so you’ll probably have to go back for a second visit. Everyone has their own section of the club to dance in, making it actually quite hard to pull if that’s what you’re there for. The smoking area takes an age to get out to, and even then if you’re really pissed you’ll trip up on the curb. All of these things are bad, but they don’t ruin the club. Ocean is an enjoyable experience, when and if you get in there. The queue is by far the worst part of the night. One week you can get away with rocking up at 11, the next you’ll be stood there for an hour.


Among the many clubs and bars in Nottingham, we have the Bowery. A concealed out of the way venue which has many students wondering what you are on about upon suggestion of a visit. In this basement, a generic dance move would find you concussed against its low ceiling. The Faceboook event advertises a guestlist which never appears to be on the door making it £7 entry each time. On the off chance the photographer is there, they take over exposed close up photos of people getting off with each other. Are you advertising a club night or an orgy?

Stealth vs. Rescued

With five rooms to choose from, its more than likely you’ll lose yourself in the quietest room of green laser beams and techno beats where its so dark you can play spot the gurning indie kid in the corner. We’re forever hopeful to be rescued from this place only to be dragged to more niche and stereotypical rooms.


With a floor plan based on M.C. Escher’s relativity, you’ll regret your footwear in this place.

Coco Tang

The club you’re most likely to end up at post hall formal. Where your phone battery goes to die after repeated shots of you and your cocktail.

VICE Mondays at Coco Tang never fail to impress.

The Bodega

If there’s one club you can rely on where you’ll get completely smashed but not enjoy yourself, it’s Bodega. The music is always always awful. It’s the same every Friday, the songs your dad listened to and no one there was around to see it. It’s a load of indie kids harking back to days they don’t know about, in double or triple denim. No one really gets Bodega, but we all still go there.