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Charters Bar, Peterborough

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user reviews of Charters Bar, Peterborough

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

A very unique setting for a few pints and a catch up with a friend. The many pints tried were all in very good condition. The entirety of the Oakham range bar Scarlet McCaw was available along with a good selection of guest beers. We went for the burger and a pint deal foodwise which was good, but the Thai food smell wafting every now and again made me wish I’d gone for that instead. The young bar-staff are all very friendly. All-in-all a place I shall definitely come back to.
littledrummerboy - 10 Jul 2018 17:41
Probably one of the best pre-football drinking venues in the country, this is characterful indeed and provides a winning combination of Oakham ales and Thai food. JHB and Citra went down well and there was also a great range of guest ales. The barge on which the pub resides is over a hundred years old.
BoehmBawerk - 10 Jan 2016 14:27
Very unusual venue for a pub! Good range of Oakham Ales, plus a few guests.
Aztecgoat - 25 Jan 2015 09:33
This place could be the best pub in Peterborough, unfortunately it's not, the massive choice of Oakham beers taste very similar and are not a patch on the beer served under their Oakademy scheme by other pubs. On a quiet Tuesday afternoon I stood for almost 20 minutes waiting to be served and the the Scarlet MacAw tasted like it hadn't been pulled through. V disappointed!!
Mrsponge01 - 4 Oct 2013 19:49
Paid a visit here one afternoon. Old Dutch barge moored on the river Nene converted into a Thai restuarant on the upper deck and a real ale bar on the lower deck. The adjoining river bank doubles as a beer garden with a beer tent and kiosk which is used on busy days. Being close to Peterborough Utd it gets very busy on matchdays particularly on the lower deck.

This place definately woth a visit not only for its uniqueness but also for the great range of beers available. The sort of place that is ideal to visit on a sunny afternoon!

wezmiester - 26 Oct 2012 16:17
Arrived here prior to the Peterborough Beer festival and was not disappointed. Range of ales was excellent not surprisingly concentrating on the Oakham range which had a rather good porter, Black Hole as well as JHB, both of which were enthusiastically sampled. As mentioned in previous reviews, a big outdoor drinking area is available for those rare sunny summers days.
ahscum - 28 Aug 2012 20:24
I stayed the night nearby on business and walked to the pub on the recommendation of 2 Camra friends. Frankly, it didn't look too inviting plus the fact I was on my own. However, nothing ventured nothing gained, I entered the barge and opened the glass door to go downstairs. I hadn't realised how large the interior might be. Plenty of space to accommodate the 12 cask ales plus all the usual other beers. Tried an Oakham ale too start with ands was so imprfessed with the quality - straight out of the barrel this one - that I stayed for a few more. I arrived at 6.40 and was still there at last orders at 10.55. I don't think I tried the same beer twice. There was a quiz night that thursday and whilst not what I like the management of this place really keep the atmosphere going. I also had a meal in the upstairs Thai restaurant and whilst a bit pricey it all added to the evenings entertainment.
My only regret is that I live 110 miles away from here but I will be back. Superb ales and friendly efficient service. Get yourself down there!
ButchEgg - 11 May 2012 17:32
I love this pub. Been drinking, dancing and eating here for my entire drinking life despite living in an outlying village. I've never thought of it as shabby - as some of the other comments suggest - but I suppose that's because of familiarity! The range of beers & ales is excellent, they are Oakham Ales but their guest range is impressive, and they have always had a good selection of spirits. I love wine but have only ever ordered it there from the restaurant - which has an acceptable range. Their Thai restaurant offerings are of a consistently high standard - and their service is of the best in town! I recommend this place to every one.
Yhapster - 25 Mar 2012 10:19
Oakham ales and guest beers on a boat on the river - what more do you need. Great selection from Oakham and a selection of beers from other brewers. We had no problem getting in even though we had away football shirts although this may change if it was a higher profile Saturday game! Anyway, there is a large outdoor seating area and it is just a very nice place with greta beer.
mcroyal - 21 Mar 2012 13:31
Ale drinkers paradise, usually up to twelve ales to choose from, friendly staff, dark and very atmospheric in the lower deck with the East Restaurant on the upper deck. Dogs welcome (downstairs that is) and a huge seating area outside.
3konaowner - 17 Jun 2011 22:02
Certainly a different type of pub. Lots of real ales, although it was fairly packed after football got served in reasonable time. Better than it looks from the outside.
GuideDogSaint - 16 Feb 2011 23:01
A superb selection of real ales - sadly I only had time to sample one - the Oakham Bishop's Farewell, which was excellent. Bar service was efficient and friendly. My only complaint is that, being down in the depths of the boat, the place appears generally gloomy and claustrophobic with little or no natural light.
ace1973 - 2 Oct 2010 08:44
First impressions of this large old barge, were that it was going to be a bit disappointing. It’s got a rather decrepit air about it, and just didn’t look very inviting. However, looks can be deceiving, and I was very glad I paid a visit.

It consists of one large, open downstairs bar with a suitably nautical feel to it – rough wood panelling, wooden flooring and wooden tables. Not much in the way of décor, but some interesting prints on the walls detailing some of the beers on offer. There’s one very long bar running almost the whole length of the ship, and a small corner stage at one end that looks as though it may be used for bands or a disco. Upstairs there’s an oriental restaurant. This is an interesting mezzanine type floor, with the windows of the restaurant over looking the edge of the lounge.

Beer choice is among the largest I have ever seen in any pub. On this visit I noted (deep breath)… Oakham’s White Dwarf, Bishops Farewell and Midnight Mild; Green Jack’s Orange Wheat Beer; RCH Steam Shower; Anglo Dutch Special (from Dewsbury, Yorkshire, apparently); Black Friars Spring Tide; Atomic Fission; Tower Brewery Cooper’s Special; Leydon Brewery’s Rammy Rocket plus another two that were apparently off as the pump clips were turned round. Amazing. After all that beer, ciders were a slightly disappointing Scrumpy Jack and Stowford Press.

The outside area, although large, is a little disappointing. All the tables and chairs are on a rather unattractive gravelled area with a curious raised section in the middle. There are some lawns further back, but no seating. On top of this, there’s no view of the river, which seems to be one of the main reasons for having a riverside pub! The large barge completely obscures the view, with the bridge and the end blocking anything you may see upstream. There is however an outside bar as well, which is useful if you don’t want to make the trek back to the boat. Obviously a much more limited selection though, with no real ales at all.

Blackthorn - 23 May 2010 22:51
Great Pub... excellent everchanging guest beers all well kept ... Food brought down from upstairs is Pan-Asian, expensive but tasty, whereas the beer is well priced and served by knowledgable bar staff, very impressed.
Ziggles - 8 May 2010 18:23
got to say this was no dissapointment the ale range was fantastic the barstaff let my wife try a few tasters till she founnd one she liked.. and the story of how they got the barge under the bridge was told to me in great detaial ...
loiner8 - 29 Apr 2010 14:46
Fantastic beer festival with lots of beers on stillage in the outside marquee and still more in the bar on the barge itself. All beers we tried in great condition, but it was a shame that 7 of the beers we asked for were not ready. Big match day tomorrow, so looks like a successful festival. This is one not to miss when in the area though.
gillhalfpint - 2 Apr 2010 22:29
Excellent bar, 12 real ales, all of the ones we had were in excellent condition, handy for Peterboroughs ground, and really great bar staff. It was not overly busy on match day and getting served was not a problem. Home and away fans mixed well, and there was a really good atmosphere. My friends tried the match-day curries and were not overly impressed, I stuck to a balanced diet, a pint in each hand!
Anyone know why the Oakham special beer (Was it Inferno?) was more than 60p dearer than other beers, it was only 5.7%.
Dylanwing - 28 Mar 2010 16:54
Along with the Brewery Tap, this is one of Oakham's 'Oakademy of Excellence' pubs so you can expect a monthly limited edition special from that brewery.

The venue, a hundred year old Dutch grain barge, is impressive. How on earth did they get it there, with low bridges both upstream and downstream!
arihall - 23 Mar 2010 17:53
I have been here a lot over the past year, as meet with a group of Peterborough United fans/friends pre-match (amiable away fans welcome too - and very family friendly).

A great range of ales and the Thai food (made in the restaurant upstairs) is very flavourful, if you fancy it.

The interior is unique and there is a huge seated garden area (along with a smaller beer bar) for when the weather's nice.

Some complain about it getting too busy on match days - but if you call in early enough to ensconce, this really isn't a problem.

There is nothing overtly 'sport fan' about it to the average eye, so it is definitely recommended for all types of people at any time of the day or week - save 17.30-19.30 on some Tuesdays and 12.30-14.30 on some Saturdays during the footy season!
cynthiaxuk - 21 Mar 2010 11:11
Renowned amongst Peterborough drinkers. Manages to have a fine range of good (and even rare) beers, regular live music and plenty of seating - including some outdoor space (where the pub will hold its beer festivals in a gazebo). The interior is somewhat claustrophobic, without the views that one would get in a conventional pub. However the conversion of the barge has been excellent and the combination with the oriental restauarnt on the upper deck makes this a place that repays visit after visit.
Arctium_lappa - 7 Feb 2010 21:12
Great Idea.... pub in a barge. Loads of ale, well kept. Fantastic!
tommyn11685 - 4 Sep 2009 13:47
Large 1907 Dutch barge, long bar with plenty of handpulls; Cathedral Ale Eight Bells, Cottage Mod n Hound & Merchant Navy, Leadmill Interstate 95 (just don’t!), Oakham JHB, Bishops Farewell, Inferno, White Dwarf, Westons scrumpy. Small raised area for live music, also home to the dartboard. Seating area to right of bar has some signed muso photos but I didn’t recognise any, sorry. I thought the green area next to the mooring was all grass last time I was here, but unfortunately they seem to have slapped a large patch of concrete in the middle now.
trainman - 7 Jun 2009 11:22
The finest pub in Peterborough. By far.
Hal76 - 26 May 2009 10:48
Late review from October when we came to revisit GBG pubs and found a festival on in this excellent barge pub. Had 14 excellent ales over the two days we were visiting. Well done on ale selection.
gillhalfpint - 17 Jan 2009 12:42
I've always loved this place, and in years of coming here I've never had a bad pint. An everchanging selection of real ales, always in excellent nick.

They have great live music too. Add to this the fact that it's got a pleasant garden ( despite being in the middle of Peterborough ) by the river, and you've got a belter.

Plus, how many pubs do you know where you will be drinking below water level ?
nmckenn - 18 Dec 2008 21:23
Another Oakham owned establishment in Peterborough. Charters is a very large converted Dutch barge which is over 100 years old. Eleven beers on offer last Saturday as I guess the Twelfth had finished on a busy afternoon. Oakham JHB, Inferno, White Dwarf & Bishops Farewell, Titanic Iron Curtain & Full Scream Ahead, Green Jack Lurcher, Wicked Witch, Newby Wyke White Squall, Crouch Vale Eureka and Nottingham Bullion. A great selection of beer with a number of dark ales. The barge is 176 feet long and licenced to carry 616 tonnes. It has a 100 seat restaurant and has the largest beer garden in Peterborough.
Love_good_ale - 29 Nov 2008 19:47
This is a barge on the river that has a bar and restaurant on board. It is full of character and has a fantastic range of quality beer - I had a Wikced Witch that was superb. Really busy on my visit but that was due to Posh being at home as a lot of the customers were football fans.
Rod_Hariga - 23 Nov 2008 22:01
Called in on the way back from Norwich. Still excellent.
Leicesterbeer - 14 Nov 2008 10:16
A must in all my Cambridgeshire holidays in the last years. Excellent choice of at least 10 real ales as always , great location as well.
Pidley2547 - 13 Mar 2008 02:24
Fantastic venue. One I've longed to seek out for some time. Verdict: Ticks every box & then some.

Superb location, just up from the town centre shops, permanently moored by a bridge over the swan-infested canal. Loads of outdoor seating & unbeatable on a summer's afternoon.

12 cask ales of the very very highest quality (we were in Peterborough for the camra beer fest & the conditioning of the beer here was better.)
On our visits (pl.) there were up to 6 from the mighty Oakham brewery including 3 never before seen nor tried by us Southerners: Haka, Coronet & Randall Rootz. We also sampled great beers from Black Hole, Peak, Elgood & many more besides.

If the casks don't 'float your boat' there's an impressive continental bottled selection (including a +10% Tripel!) along with all the usual suspects like Magners & draft Stella & Star plus spirits & fruit-based drinks for the ladies (who must surely love the novelty-value too.) There's even a decent malt whisky line-up.

They also grill a mean BBQ (double bacon cheeseburgers!) & the top deck of the barge is a Chinese Restaurant. Add to all this regular blues-focused live music & I can't think of anything left that could improve it.
young_camra_collectiv - 28 Aug 2007 21:21
The pub I visit most often when I go in to Peterborough, always an excellent choice of ales and the oriental bar meals are good if you are feeling hungry.
Tweeky - 22 Apr 2007 20:34
A hot sunny day by the river, 100 beers on offer and good ones at that, served from a lovely barge / pub and a marquee set up in the beer garden. Heaven.
gillhalfpint - 15 Apr 2007 23:08
The Barge is 100 years old over Easter so that weekend there is a beer festival at Charters to celebrate this event. With the food upstairs and the new beer garden this pub has just got better. If you are in Peterborough and you like a wide selection of good beer, this is the place.

No I don't work there, its just a very good pub.
old_wodger - 16 Mar 2007 15:39
One of my favourite Peterboro bars. Is actually a boat with the pub downstairs and another oriental food emporium on the top deck near the crows nest.

Good range of local real ales, quite expensive though. Massive beer garden, ideal for summer drinking, and very close to the excellent Metropolis Lounge nightclub.
DeggyT - 4 Nov 2006 23:34
I bit like the brewery tap on water. Worth visiting for the novelty value alone. The beer range is excellent, and I understand the food is good too. Excellent value.
fromedrinker - 23 Oct 2006 13:25
madmatty - 16 Sep 2006 08:18
Fine conversion of a barge, and very good selection of interesting ales. But when it's barely ticking over mid-afternoon and the barman is so engrossed in conversation that he fails to notice a customer at the bar, a place loses marks. He was probably the exception, not the rule, but....
joegreen - 20 Mar 2006 13:24
Loads of character, Loads of Beer what more do you want ??. Highly recommended, especially during the summer
Amarok - 3 Mar 2006 22:41
Not been that often. But if (IMO)The brewery tap is the best pub in town this runs it a close 2nd and has its uniqueness to add to a quality range of beers and generally friendly atmosphere. Plus its near to and open when the nearby beer festival's on in August.
Fenlander - 1 Feb 2006 20:51
Ahhh, this place is great. Quality beer, crazy location, excellent venue. Can't recommend enough!
Quinno - 11 Sep 2005 17:02
An always large selection of real-ales and fairly welcoming.
Thai bar meals from the restaurant upstairs is another plus.
sound69 - 1 Jul 2005 03:06
Beer went downhill for a while - problems with cooling kit, etc. Twelve new cooled hand pumps , lines, etc fitted and the beer is now in great nick again. Oriental restaurant upstairs and the food is available in the bar. Large beer garden. Twelve real ales normally available including several from Oakham Ales and ever changing guests. Live music starts at 11pm on Friday and Saturday. Entry charge after 11pm. Open until 1.30.
pcamra - 19 Feb 2005 12:26
Wonderful find after 10 years of going to Peterborough…

Great range of beers, even better prices (I'm from Surrey) all very drinkable in a wonderfully different location.
petergoesrock - 18 Feb 2005 10:53
good pub nice door staff
wendy - 3 Nov 2004 09:15
what has happened to the beers lately???? went in for a drink on one of my regular visits to peterborough and it was disgusting!!!!
anonymous - 19 Aug 2004 00:09
great range of beers and live music
Bram - 28 Jun 2004 00:07
I visited Peterborough for the first time when the beer festival was on and what a fab little boat pub it is. Excellent beers and friendly staff and good selection of Thai food, will definitely go again.
Pandora - 10 Sep 2003 17:05
The Barge is a welcoming Pub, it may be called a cafe bar but it really is a pub. Friendly bar staff and a range of 10+ Draught Beers. Late night 23:00 onwards music most Fridays & Saturdays.
Tim - 28 Jul 2003 13:09
A fantastic pub. May God bless all who sail in her!
Gordon - 22 Jul 2003 23:22
Previously Dutch grain barge now classy drinking establishment.always winning awards as has changing guest beers on weekly basis and has good cellarman. Food good and cheap - all round good pub
arturo_morales - 24 Mar 2003 11:49

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