These days Oxford is not exactly known for its nightlife but according to clubbers back in the day, it was a different story. 

Nowadays nightclub goers have the likes of ATIK, The Bridge and Plush, which see a lot of footfall on a weekend.

But those who have been on the scene a little longer shared memories of clubs of old that would always guarantee a good time.

READ MORE: Will Oxford get a Toby Carvery?

From celebrity sightings to great tunes, here's what readers had to say about the lost nightclubs of Oxford. 

1) The Coven

The Coven nightclub shut its doors in 2011, but stood in Oxpens Road since it took over an abandoned cafe in May 1978.

In our call out for people's memories of bygone clubs, this one was one of the most frequent to come up. 

Oxford Mail: Image of the Coven Night Club before Closing night in August 2011.Image of the Coven Night Club before Closing night in August 2011.

One reader Michael O'Donoghue said: “The answer to this is so obvious. It’s the Coven."

Another reader Alex Cooper"I saw Carl Cox there long time ago plus Kashif MC Duke Adham put on a wicked show mark Morrison attended. Plus AWOL tour went there madness. Happy times."

Oxford Mail: The Coven in 1979. The Coven in 1979.

2) 5th Avenue (Boodles)

Oxford Mail: Radio Oxford DJ Phil Rapps, congratulates Franklyn Hughes, winner of the DJ contest, Dave Mundy (right) came second and Greg Parrott (centre) came third at Boodles.Radio Oxford DJ Phil Rapps, congratulates Franklyn Hughes, winner of the DJ contest, Dave Mundy (right) came second and Greg Parrott (centre) came third at Boodles.

This club was mentioned by many readers, with various different spellings. 

It was also mentioned in an outdated Oxford Mail article from 1998 in which a reporter explored why Oxford men couldn't dance

It said: "More times than not, the men will be shuffling below them in a sad style that is more Mr Bean than John Travolta."

The venue's predecessor Boodles from the 80s was also fondly remembered, one reader recounting a memory of staying and finishing off left drinks after the fire alarm went off!

Lynnette Sutton Walls: “Boodles, we never had to worry about our handbags being stolen, us girls danced around them on the floor like it was a bonfire"

3) The Cellar (formerly Dolly)

Oxford Mail: Oxford band Foals are among acts who started life at The Cellar. Picture Paul TippingOxford band Foals are among acts who started life at The Cellar. Picture Paul Tipping

Closing more recently in 2019, attempts to save this Oxford haunt were made by bands such as Radiohead and Ride and a crowdfunding campaign £92,000.

It was fondly remembered by many readers, previously known as The Corn Dolly and The Dolly and run by the same family since the 1980s.

Oxford Mail: Cellar Oxford - -Piney Gir and Gaz Coombes' backing singers.Cellar Oxford - -Piney Gir and Gaz Coombes' backing singers.

Ex-Pulp singer Jarvis Cocker was also amongst the celebs who tried to save it.

One reader said: "The Dolly’ the club everyone went to off their heads after all the other pubs and clubs closed lol, from teenagers to oldies in there omg. Remember being wasted in there dancing to Chumbawamba, Tubthumping 97/98 lol"

4) Zodiac

Oxford Mail: Clubbers at the Zodiac in 2002.Clubbers at the Zodiac in 2002.

Now the Oxford O2, The Zodiac club ran from 1995 to 2007 and it is clear by how many readers mentioned it that many a good night was had there. 

Some even reminisced about the clubs that held the venue before it, such as the Co-Operative Dining Hall in the 60’s and 70’s and The Venue in the 80s.

Reader Simon Wilkins said: "The Zodiac - basic but many great artists from multiple genres performed there. Plenty of great memories before it became another O2 venue."

READ MORE: The Zodiac passes into history

5) Downtown Manhattan AKA DTMs

Oxford Mail: Image of Downtown Manhattan from back in the day.Image of Downtown Manhattan from back in the day.

It is clear from readers comments that there are mixed feelings about this club, but it is clear it the place to go for a disco in the 80s.

A less fond reader Terry Atkinson said: "DTM’s the inspiration for ‘Fantastic Beasts, and Where to Find Them’!"

Plenty of Oxford's other lost clubs were mentioned including, The Jam Factory, Chicago Rocks Cafe, Angels, and the Caribbean Club.

The Oxford Mail call out on Facebook got over 700 comments with people sharing best night clubs back in the day and their memories. 

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