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Isle of Wight

Which is bigger: the Isle of Wight or Rutland?

Matthew Chatfield
Latest posts by Matthew Chatfield (see all)

Regular readers will recall The Ranger’s sensitive analysis of the thorny question of whether Rutland or the Isle of Wight was the smallest county in England. His conclusion, if you’ve forgotten, was that it was hard to tell, and probably didn’t matter anyway. Recently, another perspective on this question has come to light – and once more tidal forces of a kind seem to play a part.

Google Trends is a website that “provides insights into broad search patterns”. What’s more it’s got data going back years: and above, one can see the relative importance to Google users of the county of Rutland (in red) and the Isle of Wight (in blue). Intriguingly, it seems as though the Island has a very seasonal search pattern. Perhaps its strong tourist economy plays a part as the summer seems to be the peak time, and there’s certainly a big spike round about June for the Isle of Wight Festival each year. But poor old Rutland can only equal the Island when the ‘tide of tourists’ is right out, round about Christmastime. And if you fiddle with the figures (go to Google and try it if you like, it’s quite easy) you can exclude America and thus the majority of the searches for Rutland which refer to 18 synonymous places in the USA. When you do that Rutland can’t even register a quarter of the web traffic of the Island. So, which is ‘bigger’ now, eh?

Matthew Chatfield

Uncooperative crusty. Unofficial Isle of Wight cultural ambassador. Conservation, countryside and the environment, with extra stuff about spiders.

3 thoughts on “Which is bigger: the Isle of Wight or Rutland?

  • pajamadeen

    If I was searching, I’d much rather search for the Isle of Wight, which is a delightful name, as opposed to Rutland. Who wants to go to Rut-land? It sounds hot and dusty and hard on the tires. Or tyres.

    • Chris Taylor

      It’s beautiful, I moved back after 40 years in Surrey. Rutland with its pretty ironstone villages, great pubs, rolling hills and Rutland Water, for fishing, sailing, walking, and yes Osprey’s. You should try but don’t let on, we don’t want too many tourists!

  • The Virtual Ranger

    Wouldn’t the IOW get smaller in tourist season with all those extra people standing on it pushing it further down into the sea? Then when they’ve all gone home it pops back up again to its original size….?


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