The Oval Tavern

Bars and pubs Croydon
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(51user reviews)
230 Love It
Save it

It's as much about the entertainment as it is the food and booze at this popular Croydon pub. There's something going on every night, from blues jams, acoustic sessions and DJs to darts on a Monday night and Aunty Wendy's pub quiz on a Wednesday. There's even a Saturday afternoon storytime - for the kids, we presume.

The food here is pretty accessible - think bar snacks of homemade Scotch eggs and sausage rolls, grilled mac and cheese, tuna melts, mushroom rarebit and a club sandwich, here including chorizo. The beer garden plays host to couple of barbecues that prove a bit of a draw on sunny summer days.

As do the real ales - expect five on the pump as well as more by the bottle. 



More Less
The Oval Tavern says
A short stroll from East Croydon station, hidden down a quiet residential street, you'll find this true oasis of a pub.

We pride ourselves on a proper local relaxed atmosphere. With six hand-pulls dispensing an ever-changing range of quality ales, particularly local brews: The Cronx Brewery and Gosnell's Mead made in Peckham. We are also extremely proud to be in The Good Beer Guide for two years running!

Our kitchen caters fantastic, fresh, home-cooked pub fare serving the best veggie breakfast in Croydon, as well as Sunday roasts with quality live jazz every Sunday lunchtime.

There's something for everyone, from our pub quiz every Wednesday, to Saturday story time sessions for little ones with music, crafts, puppetry and stories.
More Less


Venue name: The Oval Tavern
Address: 131 Oval Road
East Croydon
Transport: Rail: East Croydon rail
Do you own this business?
To improve this listing email:

You may be interested in:

Average User Rating

4.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:46
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

This pub which was on 'The Peep Show' (set in Croydon) has a relaxed feel. It regularly hosts several events for all ages to enjoy - from baby sing song sensory sessions to band jam nights. There's also a fab BBQ area out the back for those summer nights.

More like an arts centre with a fantastic bar attached than "just a local pub" but it can also do "just a local pub" too! Fantastic official team of staff, with a wider network of unofficial "team" who are involved tangentially on a community basis to make this one of the best pubs in London, let alone in Croydon.

A real local pub, great ales that are always changing. A mix of music all week with an orchestra on Monday !!

It's been my local for 2 years now and in that time I've had some brilliant laughs with friends, won pub quizzes as part of a team, fallen in love there, fallen out of love there. Got drunk there, been sober there but all the while enjoyed it's free atmosphere and lack of "chain" appeal.

The friendliest place to be in Croydon. Always people there you know. The best landlady in town and beyond, lovely food, fab music, homely atmosphere. What more can you ask? Home from Home

A pub with a difference! It's great! Friendly, quirky, cosy. Ive spent many a night here and love the music they put on - especially on Sundays. The real ale crowd that frequent this superb Tavern are a nice lot!!

Fantastic local - great gigs and events - lovely mix of people - amazing staff - and highlights like Sunday jazz and roast

Great for a wedding! Super for a community meeting. Excellent beer. Good company. Always welcoming. Contributes so much to Croydon Arts and communities. Thank you, Esther!!

This place is amazing!! So many different things happening and great live music! From Morris Dancing to R and B, and the bar staff are all friendly! Something for everyone!

The best live music - fabulous food - great bbq's in the Summer and really friendly staff and locals

The atmosphere is relaxing. Staff so friendly. And at the end of a busy day or week the food hits the spot. They have a good choice of live music catering for everyone. Step outside and the same feeling follows.

The atmosphere is relaxing. Staff so friendly. And at the end of a busy day or week the food hits the spot. They have a good choice of live music catering for everyone. Step outside and the same feeling follows.

It has live music most days/evenings supporting many genres, it's comfortable, has good basic food and it's friendly

Great beer. Great service. Lots on. And it's run by the awesome Esther Sutton! Five stars is simply not enough!

The Oval is just everything a local pub should be; there is something for everyone to enjoy. It has not succumbed to a pseudo makeover which takes away the glorious, warm, friendly lived in atmosphere which has evolved over the years, but keeps updating & improving to make it an even more pleasant place to visit. Every music genre is explored, there are day time events for children, the staff are brilliant and the home cooked food is delicious. All in all, just the best tavern I know. Congratulations to Esther and her team for creating such a wonderful venue for us to enjoy!

Mention 'pub' and The Oval is the first place I think of now in Croydon. Music, food, beers, laid back atmosphere - and the incomparable Esther. A must.

Great music, fabulous bar staff and wonderful food. We are blessed that live in the neighbourhood.

It is one of Croydon's little gems, more so now the one and only Esther has taken it over and made it one the best places to go for food, entertainment with live bands, stand up comedy, Dj's, Quiz nights and a ton of other things. Her garden is beautifully made with a purpose built BBQ area and a mini stage for various acts to perform outside. I love it there ( I might love Esther just a little bit too....ahem)

Family friendly, lovely staff, great atmosphere, very good selection of ales. A terrific local pub.

Great friendly local pub. Frequent live music in the evenings. Every Saturday afternoon it is all child friendly with their popular free Storytime sessions with stories and lots of craft activities for the little ones.

Love having this pub as my local! Staff are always friendly, food is always good (see: burgers and roasts), the outdoor area is fab when the sun is shining and the live music that I have seen has been great. Definitely the best pub in Croydon.

Great local community pub. They have story / sing along times during the day for kiddies and great music, beer and fun times for the grown ups in the evenings. Staff are really friendly as well

The best pub in Croydon. Tucked away- it has great music and food, friendly staff, excellent garden and a wicked vibe of fun-never any trouble down there- if only everywhere in Croydon was like this...! Love it x

Fabulous land lady, great staff, great food. Entertainment galore. What else do you need?

The Oval has been the best pub in Croydon by some distance ever since Esther took it over. Her previous place, The Green Dragon, was the best pub in town until she moved. Now The Oval stands pre-eminent. Everything you would want in a local. A decent courtyard to the rear. Live music of different types (folk, jazz, open mic), roasts if you're into that sort of thing, and a decent range of real ales. If you're in Croydon, go here, you won't regret it.

Good vibe, good staff, good food. A real community pub with something for everyone, including Shakespeare Abridged in the garden, live music and story telling for kids.

The Oval tavern is the best pub in London and the rest of the universe and very reminiscent of heaven on earth.

This pub is like coming home! I crave the amazing food. There is such a mix of live music and events for children. Something for everyone.

Lovely atmosphere, good beers and friendly staff. Often some great live music or local theatre on. A joy of pub!

It's fun and friendly. Run and staffed by the nicest and best of Croydon's bar peeps.

Good beer, excellent music and entertainment, community hub and lovely vibes.

Great pub, great staff and fabulous food... Also live music, what more could I want from my local

Friendly and fun, this is a great place to eat and drink, with the quality of both of a very high standard. There is also a wide range of events such as live music and comedy for very reasonable prices. One of the many gems in Croydon.

A lovely venue near East Croydon Station serving good food and cask ales. There's live music most nights. The Oval is an oasis in the Croydon desert.


I was frustrated the online menu didn't quite match the real-life menu but the man on the bar staff comped me a half-pint of the mango cider on tap, so all forgiven =) I got the avocado pesto pasta as a side for 2 pounds and it was a nice-sized portion. It was served cold, however, so I asked for it to be warmed which seemed to disturb the cook. Of course pesto+ avocado = amazeballs. My husband's Moroccan burger was a bit spicy and he liked it. I liked the tartar sauce that accompanied the dish.

I'm just dinging another star because the food took FOREVER to come. I really thought they were killing the lamb for how long it took. The barman apologised though so my heart softened a little. 

Show More