Coventry is one of the biggest cities in the UK and is one of the most historically important cities. The city is home to two universities, a wide selection of nightclubs, festivals, sport and museums.
Located in the West Midlands, Coventry is the 12th largest city in the UK and the 9th largest city in England. The city boasts a population of 432,386 according to the most recent figures and is around 95 miles away from London.
Things to do in Coventry
Kasbah Nightclub is a great place for students as it offers a fresher’s week welcoming and a way for you to meet people at your university as well as a chance to drink and enjoy the night with loud music and lots of dancing.
Students should also check out JJ’s, which offers different prices such as 50% of all drinks before 12:00am on Fridays and before 11:00pm on Saturday’s. JJ’s has VIP experiences, party packages and DJ sets.
The two most important museums in the city are the Coventry Transport Museum and Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, both of which show you two crucial aspects of Coventry.
There are cinemas are all around Coventry, whether it be Showcase Cinemas or even the Odeon. Coventry has its own music festival that it runs annually, called the Coventry Godiva Festival. It features a number of well-known acts and is a great three days out to enjoy some of the best and even some of the most unknown of the music industry. Coventry also runs an Oktoberfest which is hugely popular in the city.
The city railway station has services that are provided by Avanti West Coast, CrossCountry and West Midlands Trains. The station has services that travel all over the country, however, it will mainly head to Newcastle and London if you are looking for travel to major cities.
National Express Coventry, Travel de Courcey, Stagecoach in Warwickshire and Arriva Midlands are bus operators that offer services in the city. The city’s main bus station is Pool Meadow and there is a coach interchange in the city’s centre. There is also a Park & Ride service offered, which runs from War Memorial Park. National Express also offers coach rides to other major cities.
There is no major airport in the city, though there is a commercial airport available, Coventry Airport. For those who wish to fly internationally, you will need to head to Birmingham to Birmingham Airport.
Universities in the City
Coventry University started off as the Lancaster Polytechnic in 1970 and then rebranded in 1987 as Coventry Polytechnic after finally achieving university status in 1992 and rebranding for the final time as Coventry University.
The student body of Coventry University is represented by the Coventry Students Union (CUSU), which is also a registered charity. The union also offers free advice for students on any issues they may be facing at university. The CUSU owns and also runs its own independent nightclub as well as a student radio station called Source Radio.
The union also represents a number of sports clubs and societies. The university’s main sports team is Team Phoenix, who represents the university in five different sports. The university also competes with the University of Warwick in a number of formal and informal varsity matches and even has its own racing team.
The University of Warwick was founded in 1965 and has spawned a number of offspring universities, such as Warwick Medical School and Warwick Law School.
The University of Warwick student union is one of the largest student unions in the country and represents 260 societies and over 50 sports club. The union also has an annual turnover of a reported £6m every year, from which, the profit is used to provide services to students. The union is also part of the National Union for Students (NUS) and will be able to provide students with an TOTUM Card.
The union also represents Radio Warwick (RAW), a student radio station, The Boar, the student newspaper and Perspectives, a student magazine printed every term.
The university has also won the BBC’s University Challenge competition in 2007, where they beat the University of Manchester in the final.
Both universities compete in the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) League.
History and Culture
Coventry was initially founded as a settlement by the Romans. Over the years, the city began to build a number of historically relevant landmarks, such as a Benedictine Monastery and Coventry Castle, the latter of which was built by the 4th Earl of Chester, Ranulf de Gernon in the early 12th century.
By the time the 14th century rolled around, Coventry had become a very important city in the cloth trade and its overall importance rose as a result of this and other industry-related performances and became a city in 1345.
It is also rumoured that the plays that were often performed in the city left a huge impression on young William Shakespeare, who took the same influences and applied them to plays like Hamlet.
The city became renowned for its clock and watch manufacture in the 18th and 19th century. At the turn of the 20th century, it had become a thriving industrial city and started to provide a number of council housing developments, which were completed in the 1940s.
As part of Operation Moonlight Sonata, Coventry was heavily bombed during World War II, by the German Luftwaffe air raids. The Germans also used firebomb techniques, which damaged not only the city centre but also the historic cathedral. Over 4,000 houses were damaged or destroyed in the blitz and devastated the city. Only London, Hull and Plymouth suffered the worst damage in the blitz than Coventry.
Coventry was essential in the British war effort, as it provided a number of armaments, aircraft, aerospace engineering work, aircraft and munitions for the war effort.
After World War II ended, the city began to rebuild in an effort to replace the bombed buildings, with new, modern, up-to-date structures.
The only football team in the city is Coventry FC. The club competes in the Championship, after guaranteeing automatic promotion as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and even won the FA Cup as recently as 1987.
There are fourteen different rugby union clubs in the city, who all play at various levels of the Rugby pyramid. The most well known is Coventry Rugby Football Club, which plays in the RFU Championship, which is the second tier of the English Rugby Union system. There is also the Coventry Bears, a Rugby League club that plays in the Kingstone Press League 1, which has also won a number of titles and trophies over the years.
The city also has a thriving cricket scene within city as well, in the form of Standard Cricket Club and the Coventry and North Warwickshire Cricket Club. Both clubs compete in the Warwickshire Cricket League, with Standard Cricket Club even finishing runners up in 2019! There have been occasional First-Class cricket matches played in the city, but these have reduced somewhat after Courtaulds Ground closed in 1982.
Who’s from Coventry?
Notable people to have come from Coventry include; Terry Hall, Panjabi MC, James Starley, Tamla Kari and Richard Keys.