Some fascinating facts about the Isle of Wight that you probably didn’t realise that you wanted to know…..
- The island has more overseas visitors per year than it does residents – 2,467,909 visitors in 2010/11 with a population of only about 138,400.
- The Island has more sunshine hours than any other UK resort with on average 1800–2100 hours of sunshine per year, which is more than some areas of northern Spain.
- The Isle of Wight is said by some to be the most haunted Island in the world.
- The trains on the Ryde to Shanklin line are ex London Underground tube trains and were built around 1938 – making them older than some of the heritage steam engines on the Isle of Wight Steam Railway.
- The Isle of Wight was called Vectis by the Romans who settled there.
- The Isle of Wight is England’s smallest county when the tide is high – Rutland being the smallest when the tide is out on the Island.
- The world’s first radio station was set up by Marconi, at the Needles, on the western tip of the island in 1897.
The Needles Battery (Credit: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Needles,_Needles_Old_Battery_-_geograph.org.uk_-_644576.jpg)
- The Needles battery was also used as a site for the testing and development of Britain’s space rockets.
- Blackgang Chine, in the south of the Island, was establishment in 1843, making it the oldest amusement park in the UK and, some say, the World.
- According to audits, the local newspaper, the County Press, is read by approximately 90% of the Island’s adult population.
- The tallest structure on Isle of Wight is Chillerton Down transmitting station, whose mast is 228.9-metre (751 ft) high.
- The Isle of Wight is home to the Isle of Wight music Festival. It attracted an audience of 700,000 in 1970 with Jimi Hendrix headlining at the site at East Afton Farm.
- The world’s biggest gathering of vintage and modern scooters, The Isle of Wight International Scooter Rally, is held on the Island in August each year with between 4,000 and 7,000 participants.
- Adgestone Vineyard is one of the oldest vineyards in Britain.
- The hovercraft was invented and developed on the Isle of Wight by Sir Christopher Cockerell, who lived and worked in East Cowes.
- Formed in 1967, and active in the early 1970s, The Vectis National Party was a political party which sought independent status for the Isle of Wight, on a similar basis to other islands such as the Isle of Man.
- The well known model village at Godshill incorporates a model village of itself. It is so detailed that within that second model there is a third, even smaller, model of the village.
- Flying Boats were developed and built by Saunders-Roe Limited at their Columbine Works, East Cowes.
- The Isle of Wight is one of the richest dinosaur localities in Europe, with over 20 species of dinosaur having been found on the Island. Dinosaur footprints are visible at Compton Bay, near Freshwater, at low tide.
- When the dinosaur fossils were laid down, between 125 and 110 million years ago, the island was at a latitude similar to that of North Africa today.
- Osborne House was built between 1845 and 1851 for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert as a summer home and rural retreat and the Island became a major holiday resort for fashionable Victorians. Queen Victoria died at Osborne House in January 1901.
Osborne House (Credit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Osborne_House_02.jpg)
- PCGraphics have worked on 94 projects requiring customised maps of the Isle of Wight for various clients since we started back in 1998. That’s roughly one every two months or so.
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