Cities like Liverpool and Manchester aren’t particularly known for their table tennis – it’s further south where you’ll find the best places for ping pong in the UK.
But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any tables around the Capital. I live in London, and like many Londoners, I love sports. And I also like ping pong. So when these two things combine — well, that’s great! This is why I’ve written this checklist of 5 places in London where you can play table tennis (or ping pong) in a breeze.
Bounce Farringdon is regarded as one of London’s best indoor ping pong venues, hosting 30 table tennis tables ranging from traditional to fluorescent to interactive tables. It is a basement venue, so all the tables are downstairs but spacious enough, so you don’t have to wait.
All you’ll need is to grab your paddle, and you can get a basic idea of the budget and top picks of 2021’s best ping pong paddles from right here. It’s better to book the table at Bounce in advance though they always have a few tables available for free if you’re lucky.
Bat & Ball
If you are on the hunt for one of the best bars in Stratford Westfield, then Bat & Ball has got everything. It is a two-floor sports bar, and they take pride by calling themselves “the East London’s table tennis temple.” It’s a competitive socializing environment all year round at Bat & Ball, with table tennis enthusiasts ushering in and LIVE DJs every weekend.
Spread across the two floors, they host 8 table tennis tables, and you can book any of the championship-sized tables at £8.00 for half an hour during off-peak (Mon-Wed). The only downside is that it’s a festive season all year round at Bat & Ball, meaning it’s a busy place, and serious table tennis players might find it distracting.
The Doodle Bar
The Doodle Bar is a great place for a leisurely table tennis match at Bermondsey square with a friend while seeping in craft beer or cocktails. The premise is simple but has lots of amenities. Doodle bar also has two ping pong tables that people can use for free. There is an extremely old Fussball table, which you can use free of charge as well. The restaurant bar has three burgers and fried options, but they are all outstanding.
If you want to be creative, you’ll find free chalks of colors to draw doodles on walls or even tables. They also provide ping pong balls, but you’ll have to ask for them. If you’re not the asking type, here is the list of ITTF approved ping pong balls that are all-time favorites among players. All in all, you’ll find yourself in a creative environment that serves fantastic craft beers and provides the opportunity to play ping pong for free, too.
It’s true that London is full of ping pong clubs, but not all of them offer a free table for newcomers to test their skills. The Miller pub in London Bridge serves a splendid selection of local craft beer alongside gourmet chicken, beef, vegetarian and vegan burgers. It has been around for years but has undergone a massive renovation recently. All in all, Miller is a fun place to hang out, play table tennis and enjoy the sunshine at the rooftop garden.
That said, Miller is always busy, and if you fail to book a table, make sure to check out the Nordic Bar at Newman Steet. It is a sports and party bar that all Londonists will surely fall in love with. The bar is stocked with retro arcade machines and table tennis tables. The four big screens show LIVE sports while you get to enjoy Scandinavia’s finest beers and wines that they take pride in. They also host competitive games periodically. The staff is friendly, and the food is decent too.
The Bishop’s Park
Other than ping pong bars and sports clubs, there are plenty of scopes to play table tennis outdoors in London. If you are an outdoor enthusiast who prefers playing relaxed table tennis, then Bishop’s Park should be on your list. It’s a great playground where you can join folks playing table tennis. But one thing is sure: investing in the right equipment like the Cornilleau 300x outdoor ping pong table with paddle sets gives you more opportunity to play table tennis. And this can be anywhere you feel like, either at the Bishop’s Park, the Golden Square, or perhaps at the Queen’s.
You’ve read our post on the best places to play table tennis in London and even the best ways to approach folks for a friendly match at their table. But it turns out that, while it’s true that all of these are great, a few things spring to mind when you think of London. The iconic London Eye. The busy streets are full of people, and the rain that strikes out of nowhere.
Clearly, we got to make a resolution because after more than 100 painstaking hours spent playing in over 35 table tennis venues across London (and we’re not even counting the netball and mixed volleyball), Tabletennistop.com can tell you exactly how to do it without feeling like an idiot. And, if you want a little kick of motivation to play table tennis in London, give a scan right away and learn how table tennis helps uplift your mood when the weather’s grey and gloomy.