The classic Nottingham nightclubs you went to in the 80s and 90s

What were the best Nottingham nightclubs if you were heading out in town during the 80s and 90s? Everyone will have their own answer, of course. But there are some classic clubs that - love them or hate them - everybody knows. So whether you were a Zhivago's girl or a Hippo's lad, an indie kid or a disco queen, we've pulled together a list of the best and most memorable clubs from the era, just so you can relive your glory years.

As always we want to hear your best memories of nights out in Nottingham. So if any of these spark some nostalgia for you, or if we've missed any, feel free to let us know in the comments below.

Astoria in Greyfriar Gate (also MGM, Ocean)

Or, to give it its proper name, Barry Noble's Astoria. He was the man who, in 1984, bought what had earlier been the Astoria Ballroom and then the Sherwood Rooms from Mecca, and turned it into one of the defining clubs of the era - along with its 'Is That Alright Fyuzs' slogan on the front of the building.

Who, then, was Barry Noble? It's probably fair to say that he lived fast and died young. He was a millionaire who had a habit of naming clubs after himself – for example Barry Noble's Roxy in Sheffield – and who at the height of his success owned eight cars, three homes, 40 amusement arcades and seven nightclubs.

Read more: 14 traditional Nottingham pubs for a good pint and stacks of history

He died in the Isle of Man in 1985 at the age of 43 from a heart attack. But the venue kept the name until the 1990s when it became MGM, and then Ocean in 1999.

Beatroot, Broadway

We quite liked Beatroot in the Lace Market, even after the time in 1999 when more than 350 people fled the venue when a shot rang out during a fight. In 2001 it was the first home to the Spectrum club night, but before too long it had closed.

In 2004 it became Evasion – an "over-21s' night club offering soulful grooves for well -dressed patrons", no less.

Black Orchid, Redfield Way (also Isis)

Back in 1992 a (very) young Take That played at the Black Orchid, a huge club near the Showcase. They were so impressed by local promoter Johnny Moore that they asked him to work for them.

Did he take up them up on the offer? No, he didn't. Only 300 people turned up, the promoter lost £15 on the evening, and he decided to give them a miss. The Black Orchid closed in 1998 and later the venue became Isis, which itself closed in 2009.

Cookie Club, Pelham Street

This classic venue opened in 1990 on a site that had previously been gentlemen's establishment The Pelham Club. After ten years of smoke machines and top indie music the Cookie Club moved to St James' Street (see Pieces, below), and the Pelham Street venue became blues club Tilt.

Easy Street, Masonic Place, off Goldsmith Street (also New York New York)

Easy Street's motto was, 'More than a nightclub, it's a way of life'. Says it all, really. The venue later became New York New York.

The Garage, St Mary's Gate (also Kool Kat, Lizard Lounge)

The history of this site is quite confusing. It was The Garage in the 80s, with indie downstairs and more dance-orientated music upstairs. It became the Kool Kat in the early 90s; then it reverted to being The Garage again, before becoming Lizard Lounge.

All of them were great, though. Perhaps that's why our memory is very hazy. Anyway, it was then BZR, but that closed in 2015 following a stabbing.

Hippo, Bridlesmith Gate (also the Bomb)

An excellent basement club with at least two claims to fame. Claim to fame #1: This is where seminal Nottingham group Tindersticks got together, when singer Stuart Staples saw violinist Dickon Hinchcliffe playing on stage.

Claim to fame #2: Comedian Lee Evans once played the Hippo. He recalls struggling to be heard over the noise from the next room every time someone opened the adjoining door.

It became the Bomb (below) in 1997, and later still Coco Tang.

Liberty's, Upper Parliament Street

It was opened in the mid-1990s and closed 15 years later in 2009 after being severely damaged in a fire.

That was probably good news for the city's courts - sometimes it seemed like half the people appearing on Monday morning at Nottingham Magistrates' Court had been drinking here on the Saturday.

Italian restaurant La Salute opened on the site in 2013.

Madisons, Goldsmith Street (also McClusky's)

This was another site which had a spot of bother over the years, although not necessarily while it was Madisons, a venue remembered very fondly by a certain generation. It later became McClusky's, then in 2003 it opened as Mode after a £1m refit.

When the 1,150-capacity Mode applied for later opening hours in 2005, police said it was the second-worst place in the city for alcohol-related violence and disorder, only behind The Works. After Mode became Halo there was further trouble, and it closed in 2010.

Pieces, St James' Street (also Deluxe, Cookie Club #2)

In the early 1990s, you would go there just to be able to say, "Yep, I went to Pieces last night." Or maybe that was just me. At any rate, we have it on good authority that a significant proportion of Nottingham's population met their future partners/spouses at this very club.

After Pieces closed, the venue became Deluxe, one of a number of city venues to host the legendary Detonate club night. In 2001 it reopened in 2000 as the Cookie Club (which moved there from Pelham Street).

At the end of 2015 the Cookie Club closed, reopening as Retro Rooms in 2016.

Ritzy, Parliament Street (also the Palais)

This is the most famous of them all. It was the Palais, then Ritzy, then the Palais again, then Oceana, and then PRYZM. But you know that.

Venus, Stanford Street

Venus was only open for four years, between 1990 and 1994, but has a mythical status due to its association with rave music.

Taking over a venue called The Club, it was Nottingham's answer to the Hacienda. In the four years it was open, it was attended by the likes of Pete Tong, Brandon Block, Jeremy Healy and Fatboy Slim.

Zhivagos, Milton Street (also Tiffany's)

How can we put this? For some people going here was a rite of passage. For others, it was a place they'd never be seen dead in.

Having opened on the site of the former Tiffany's, it closed in 1989, which was something nobody saw coming. (Except for the new owners, who opened a Vision Express on the site.)

Tiffany's night club in 1979
Astoria night club in Nottingham in 1979 -Credit:Ed Dexter

*All the dates above are correct to the best of our knowledge – but there are occasionally different dates in different sources. If you think we've got something wrong, let us know in the comments below.

And, as ever, there were a few which got away. Arabella's in Wollaton Street; The Monastery in Broadway; Barracuda in Hurt's Yard, Dubble Bubble (and Eden?) in Greyhound Street – if you have pictures of these or other clubs which aren't on the list, email us at