5 pubs in Norwich where you can play one of the UK's oldest bar games

Norwich has five pubs with a bar billiards table.

Norwich has five pubs with a bar billiards table. - Credit: Archant

Norwich is one of the UK's best cities for pubs, with hundreds lining its streets despite a number of recent closures.

But did you know there are just five city boozers left where you can play the traditional pub game -  bar billiards?

Based on the French and Belgian game billard russe, bar billiards was invented in the UK in the 1930s and was a staple of pubs across the country in the following years.

However, now the game, which is similar to pool but sees players knock over pegs as they pot balls, has seen a decline in popularity with few pubs still having a table.

Here is where you will find the remaining bar billiards tables in Norwich.

1. The Golden Star

Golden Star landlady Lil Le Grice, her partner Marc Albutt, and the cat Winston, celebrate the pub r

Golden Star landlady Lil Le Grice, her partner Marc Albutt, and the cat Winston - Credit: copyright: Archant 2014

Where: 57 Colegate, Norwich, NR3 1DD

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Opening hours: Midday to 11pm Monday to Saturday, midday to 10pm on Sunday

After being removed during the pandemic to make way for extra seating, the Golden Star's bar billiards table is back in the pub.

Like all the other pubs on this list, the Golden Star plays in the Norwich Bar Billiards League which restarted this spring after it was originally founded 15 years ago.

2. Rose Inn

The Rose Inn who are making sweet pizzas.

The Rose Inn offers pizzas with bar billiards - Credit: Archant/Denise Bradley

Where: 235 Queens Rd, Norwich, NR1 3AE

Opening hours: 3pm to 10.30pm from Tuesday to Friday opening half an hour later on Saturday

This pub, which specialises in craft beer accompanied with stone-baked pizzas, features a billiards table that can be used by drinkers.

3. Coach and Horses

The Coach and Horses in Bethel Street is under temporary management as owners Greene King look for n

The Coach and Horses in Bethel Street - Credit: Archant

Where: 51 Bethel St, Norwich, NR2 1NR

Opening hours: Midday to 11pm from Monday to Friday, midday until 2am on weekends

Perfect for those looking for a late night game, the Coach and Horses billiards table used to be based in the Cottage in Silver Road before arriving at its current home after the pub changed hands a few years back.

4. White Lion

The White Lion pub on Oak Street in Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

The White Lion pub in Oak Street in Norwich

Where: 73 Oak St, Norwich, NR3 3AQ

Opening hours: 5pm to 11pm on Tuesday, 2pm to 11pm on Wednesday to Friday and midday to 11pm on Saturday closing at 9pm on Sunday

This pub on the edge of the city has its own billiards table and also offers eight real ales on a hand pump and 12 ciders and perries. 

5. Kings Head

King's Head Magdalen Street named pub of the year in Norwich and District CAMRA AWARDS

The King's Head in Magdalen Street, Norwich, has been named Pub of the Year 2022 in CAMRA's Norwich and District branch annual awards - Credit: Google

Where: 42 Magdalen St, Norwich, NR3 1JE

Opening hours: Midday until midnight from Monday to Saturday, closing at 11pm on Sunday

The Norwich and District CAMRA pub of the year has its own bar billiards table and serves a wide range of local cask ales.