Like overpriced chain cafes and E-cigarette shops, Wetherspoons pubs have become a staple of the modern British high street.

The chain pub brand is well known for its cheap food and drinks, no fuss service and its iconic blue and white plates.  

Oxfordshire has eight Wetherspoons pubs across the county and we have ranked them from best to worst, using Tripadvisor reviews.

Where individual pubs have the same overall rating out of five stars (which is nearly all of them) we compared their number of ‘excellent’ reviews to work out which are better or worse.

How did they rank?

1. The Catherine Wheel

7-15 Hart Street, Henley-on-Thames RG9 2AR

Tripadvisor rating: 4/5

Number of excellent reviews: 241

Taking the top spot by a country mile is The Catherine Wheel in Henley. This Wetherspoons pub has a hotel attached it, so if you have ever wanted a full 24 hour Wetherspoons experience in the county, here is your chance.   

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

Lola1438 said: “Called in for a drink, think this is one of the better pubs in this particular chain.. it's very big, well laid out and the staff are on the ball.”

Reviewer sW wrote: “Excellent service, very professional staff and good value. The management here have built a strong team, attentive, brisk but friendly. If only every Wetherspoon delivered like this team.”

2. The Company of Weavers

31 Market Square, Witney OX28 6AD

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 102

Taking second place is The Company of Weavers in Witney. While this branch of Wetherspoons has the second highest number of excellent reviews but the overall picture is pretty mixed.

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

Lilacbutterflys called the pub a ‘sticky mess’, they described how gum, which had been stuck under the table, was stuck to their black top when they stood up.

They said: “Felt sick as had clearly been in somebody's mouth . Esp during the Covid pandemic!!”

However, 865warrene said: “Food was very good and very well priced well worth a visit.”

3. The Four Candles

51-53 George Street, Oxford OX1 2BE

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 97

This central Oxford Wetherspoons takes the bronze position. Set George Street this ‘Spoons is a popular spot for people looking for a cheap pint or meal, making it a haven for students. Again, the reviews are relatively mixed at this pub.

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

Martin I described the pub as the ‘worst Wetherspoons we have visited’.

They said: “We called in for a drink here. Yes the normal cheap real ales etc and staff at the bar served us quickly but the place had no feel about it and the tables were dirty and previous drinks not taken away.

“Quite often I think Wetherspoons are understaffed but there looked to be sufficient here. The carpet was minging in places. Some money needs investing in upgrading this bar.”

Harry C, on the other hand, said the pub had ‘improved’ recently. They ‘found the place to be clean and tidy’ and ‘the staff very pleasant’.  

4. The Exchange

49-50 High Street, Banbury OX16 5LA

This pub is a typical town centre Wetherspoons set in Banbury. It is a relatively average addition to our list and the consistent three star reviews show it is not particularly great nor is it outrageously bad.

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 66

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

Sabatinitennis said: “The facade is delightful, the interior not quite as impressive.

“My order was politely taken too. Well done. Some of the clientele were loud and a few somewhat 'down-market' which is a shame!”

However, 429Happy gave the pub a glowing five star review.

They said: “I have visited many Wetherspoons in the UK but this one in such an attractive historic building is one of the best. I had the scampi.

“The serving was one of the most generous I have ever had. A return visit is for sure!”

5. The Narrows

25 High Street, Abingdon OX14 4AW

Abingdon’s local Wetherspoons also hovers in the middle ground of our list with a solid 3.5 overall rating. Reviews at this venue are extremely mixed and vary from savage one star ratings through to glowing five star praises.

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 53

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

JacquiAllen74 slated the pub. They said: “We visited for my daughters birthday and was totally disgusted by how dirty the place was. It is a covid breading ground all the available tables were filthy with empty glasses and dirty plates on.

“There was rubbish all over the floor and the staff just walked passed the filth not even battering an eye lid.”

RhinoKellie, on the other hand, called the pub ‘a very good Spoons’.

They said: “Have visited a few times since they have reopened. Very quick service through the app and good covid precautions in place. The staff are generally friendly and helpful.”

6. The Swan & Castle

Castle Street, Oxford OX1 1AY

This is the second Wetherspoons pub in Oxford’s city centre and this one ranks much lower than its counterpart, The Four Candles. This venue is located near Oxford Castle & Prison, hence the name, so is an easy spot for tourists and visitors to use.

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 48

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

One reviewer gave the pub just two stars and said: “Irritated by how rude the staff are! We ordered double vodka and soda what did we get double ice and water. If negatives got you drunk I’d be on the floor by now.”

O5351FMjakem called it the ‘worst pub’ they have ever visited.

7. The Penny Farthing

58 Sheep Street, Bicester OX26 6JW

In second to last place is Bicester’s The Penny Black, so it is not the worst in Oxfordshire but most definitely not the best. Good reviews praise the staff and cheap prices while more negative reviews point out a lack of hygiene with many calling the place ‘minging’ and ‘terrible’.

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 46

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

503des503 said: “Absolutely terrible, most of the toilets were out of order and only washed my hands as it didn't feel clean. Such a shame as the meal was lovely.”

Another reviewer said there was a dead fly in their Quorn nuggets and their pitches were made almost entirely out of ice.

They said: “I eat out a lot and this is by far the worse experience I’ve ever had.”

8. The William Morris

59A Between Towns Road OX4 3LR, Oxford OX4 3LR

Taking the crown as Oxfordshire’s worst rated Wetherspoons is another Oxford pub, The William Morris. The pub has just 44 excellent reviews while reviews labelled as average, poor and terrible total 79 reviews.

Tripadvisor rating: 3.5/5

Number of excellent reviews: 44

What Tripadvisor reviewers say:

Two reviews slated the breakfasts, something Wetherspoons is well known for. They called the bacon awful cold tasteless’ and the fried eggs ‘hard’.

Reviewer JL said: “The staff are rude and blunt no personality whatsoever. They can’t even handle the queues at the bar on a weekday dread to think what it’s like on the weekend or during half terms.

“They need to work on their customer service skills and get more staff that know what they are doing as most visits are just a joke.”