A pint sits on a sunlit bar next to a bunch of white flowers
Credit: Seth Wesifield via Unsplash

Best student pubs in the West End

By Jamie Byrne

Deputy Editor-in-Chief Jamie Byrne suggests his top five watering holes for students

As the enormous wave of thirsty students return to the bustling streets of Glasgow’s West End, it is a necessity for all new students to get to terms with their local watering holes. Generation after generation of students have had a major impact on public houses in the area. But with rent prices skyrocketing, and licensing laws tightening, it is now a wee bit more difficult to find that perfect pub that caters well to scummy students like ourselves. But if you’re looking for a good time, look no further than this (extremely subjective) list I have to offer. 

Tennent’s Bar:
Located in the heart of the West End, right in the middle of Byers Road, this beautiful pub (recently refurbished) has played a significant role in the history of student drinking in Glasgow, for 130 years! The pub opened with major backlash in 1891, as the University Principle of the time, John Caird, strongly opposed the introduction of the new public house, as it was so near to the University that it could serve as a major distraction to studies. Well John, you certainly weren’t wrong there. Once inside, you can get a true feeling of the decades upon decades of students drinking through good times and bad, immediately feeling the responsibility to keep this wonderful tradition going. With a huge drinks menu, at reasonable prices, in a prime location, there’s nothing stopping you and your mates continuing the legacy of annoying old John and having a pint or two, or three, or four… 

Record Factory:
Going just a wee bit further down Byers Road, you will find the hip, New York styled Record Factory, which almost guarantees a solid night out. This underground bar is built on good tunes and good times. With live music on its imminent return, this bar will certainly be the place to be when it’s bouncing; boasting great beers on tap, a huge cocktail list (that caters to student prices), as well as a pool table area. And all with a great beer garden through the back for the three nice days of weather Glasgow gets a year, it’s difficult to find a much better spot. 

Kitty O’Sheas:
A recent addition to the west end, it has certainly lived up to its expectations from their other spots in the city centre and Edinburgh. Kitty’s has one advantage that most pubs in Glasgow only dream of having these days: the glorious 2am license. There are few things better in life than hearing a live Irish band, whilst half-cut on cheap and ice-cold booze. With the pub situated on Great Western Road, only a minute or two from the Union, get yourself to Kitty’s to enjoy one of the best pints of Guinness Glasgow has to offer. 

The Locale:
Also a fairly new boozer, which admittedly is a wee bit of a longer walk (just off Sauchiehall Street) but it is certainly worth those extra few sober steps, especially if you are planning on heading to one of Sauchiehall’s many nightclubs later on. Taco Tuesday, a favourite for many, offers £1 Tacos and, more importantly, £3 frozen margaritas. The Locale hosts a great beer garden, with a tent and major heating to keep us students warm outside all year long. There are few places better to boogie than the Locale when the DJ is out in force. 

Bank Street:
Just a stone’s throw away from the Student Union, Bank Street offers an alternative from the Union for a cheap drink. Open from 10am every day, Bank Street presents itself as a nice wee place to get a midday coffee and a bite to eat, but turns into a very social and bouncy bar by the evening. Known for great pub quizzes and other events, Bank Street is a pub close to the University that every student should try. 


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