‘Geek’ is a commonly-used term, but it means different things to different people: a statistician; an obsessive person with a terrible wardrobe; a daring outsider who operates on a dimension of reality unperceivable to normies*. *(okay, a geek probably came up with that definition). Here, we prefer the Urban Dictionary’s definition: a geek is a nerd with a social life; they may obsess over one particular passion such as gaming, genre fiction, or comics, but they’ll make time to explore it with the geek community rather than nerd out on study books alone at home.
We decided to find out which places in the UK are the best for geeks to ‘geek out’ in. To do this we picked out 20 of the biggest cities from across the UK and gathered data for each city across seven different metrics: number of comic book stores, video game stores, board game stores, Comic-Con conventions, book stores, cinemas and record stores present. We then pooled the data to identify the overall geekiest city in the UK.
For example, we found that if video games are your thing, then your people are most easily found in parts of Northern Ireland. Lisburn has the highest density of video game shops per person, with Derry nestled in second place. In fact, English gamers get a rough ride, with Northern Irish, Scottish, and Welsh cities taking the top six-and-a-half spots in the gaming city charts (Bristol comes in joint sixth with Belfast).
And the geekiest city in the land? Aberdeen. It’s number one for board game shops, number two for comic book shops, and is the third-placed city for comic cons, bookshops, and record shops. If you’re local to Aberdeen, be prepared for hordes of geeky inabootcomers. And if you’re not from Aberdeen, isn’t it time to make your pilgrimage the geek capital of Britain?
If you’re a bit of a data-geek why not review the full table below. You can see exactly how many of each type of store or event are in each city per 100,000 people. Because sometimes you just have to have all the info.
Also if you’re a completionist sort of geek why not check out the full infographic here.
To find the geekiest cities in the UK, we picked out 20 of the biggest cities in the land and identified key geek activities. We then researched places and events where these activities can be done in each of the cities, using Google Maps to find the relevant locations. To keep it properly geeky, we counted only those venues where the specified activity was the primary usage of that place, discounting those that weren’t niche enough.
All the sources used in this research can be found here – bit.ly/GeekiestCitiesIndex
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