It might be in the heart of the Black Country but there is much more to Wolverhampton than football and funny accents as this often-overlooked city has loads to offer its vast student population.
For quite a small city centre Wolverhampton is rammed with pubs, bars and clubs and they all cater to the large student population. Close to the University you have the Hogshead, Varsity and Royal London, the latter being a scream pub so there are lots of student deals if you’ve got a yellow card.
As well as the obligatory chain bars, the Litten Tree, Weatherspoons, Yates’, Walkabout and Revolution there are also some hidden gems. The Quadrant Lounge is a really cool small venue that does good food in the day and has a great atmosphere at night. They sometimes have live music, recently rising star Scott Matthews played here before Radio 1 ‘discovered’ him.
The Cuban Exchange is another nice bar with a relaxed atmosphere and sexy surroundings. Others worth a mention are The Bank and Rothwells both offer a good, if not always cheap, night out whilst the Sugar Bar is good for R ‘n’ B.
New 2000 capacity superclub Oceana adds a welcome touch of big city chic and glamour to the Wolverhampton clubbing scene. Boasting five bars, two clubs and a restaurant, Oceana has themed rooms based on famous world cities; New York Disco, Parisian Boudoir, Aspen Ski Lodge, Sydney Harbour side, Tokyo Wakyama and a Reykjavik Icehouse. Monkey Business and Paparazzi are the student nights and they even have a bus service to bring in University of Wolverhampton students from the Telford and Walsall campuses.
The University’s Student Union also has three bars; Fat Mick’s, the PolyBar and The Zone, which which offer cheap drinks, club nights and entertainment to suit all tastes. Flirt has some great fancy dress theme nights like ‘Heroes and Villains’ and ‘Cowboys and Indians’ so don’t forget to take your bow and arrow with you to Uni.
On Fridays Cheeky Monkey is the Civic Hall’s club night, playing the usual 70s and 80s cheese as well as punk, ska and indie. They play the same music in the same order every week there but it’s still good fun that is occasionally spoilt by idiots and middle-aged men who try and hit on you.
Also at the Civic, Corrosion and Blast Off are a great night out with good music and friendly people. The popular Blast Off is every Saturday, but once a month Corrosion is put on in the adjoining Wulfrun Hall, entry is the same price but you can wander freely between the two rooms. Corrosion is mainly metal and punk whereas Blast Off tends to be more indie/rock based.
Also on offer is The Canal Club, which offers the very best in alternate music.. Flares plays 70's music and is enjoyed by every age range. It can sometimes have a few nerds in but is worth it for the music. The tacky 80’s Reflex bar has some cheap student nights in the week for those who probably don’t remember the 80’s from the first time round but are still inexplicably drawn in to listening to Tiffany’s ‘I think we’re alone now’ and the Wham back catalogue. Frankie says, get some taste!
Wolves has some brilliant live venues. The Civic and Wulfrun Halls are big enough to attract the likes of Radiohead, The Killers and the Arctic Monkeys as well as classic acts like New Order, Jane’s Addiction and Public Enemy but small enough to actually be able to look the band in the eye and smell their fear. It’s a proper good old-fashioned sweaty venue, the beer isn’t too expensive and you can always get to the bar.
The Little Civic is a great little venue that features new and upcoming bands upstairs with a pub and the box office downstairs. The Planet, The Canal Club and rock pub The Gifford Arms also occasionally have small bands on. The Gifford Arms has a lived in feel to it and colourful staff but be warned Saturdays is goth night!
Anywhere near the Molineux on match day and the canals at night!
Wolverhampton is pretty good for shopping, it has all of the chain shops you would expect; New Look, Oasis, Next, JJBs, BHS, some interesting small shops, but best of all; Beatties which has claimed the loan of many a poor student.
The 10% discount makes HMV a good choice for students and Music Zone is also nice and cheap. If vinyl flicks your switch then Oldies by the bus station, Ruby Red on Cleveland Street and Max Millwards and will have you dusting your decks with delight.