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On The Table Read Magazine, “the best entertainment magazine in the UK“, we check out research into the top 10 nerdiest cities in the UK based on the comic cons, comic book shops, and science museums available!

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Nerdy Cities

Calling all capes, cowls, and curious minds! The Bat-Signal is illuminating the UK, beckoning nerdy pilgrims on a quest for the ultimate geek haven. Forget boring beige high streets and stuffy museums – we’re talking streets teeming with spandex costumes, conventions bursting with pop culture passion, and museums where science sparks imaginations like a TARDIS engine.

Today, we embark on a nerdtastic odyssey thanks to research by the experts at Rant Casino who determined Top Geek Getaways in the UK, based on comic book stores, epic conventions, and mind-blowing science museums.

Dust off your Doctor Who sonic screwdriver, polish your Captain America shield, and grab your trusty Tolkien tome, because we’re about to geek out across the land. We’ll be traversing cobbled streets where the Force is strong, delving into hidden alleys overflowing with graphic novels, and exploring hallowed halls dedicated to everything from dinosaurs to robots.

Top 10 Nerdiest Cities In The UK

RankCityComic Book Stores Per 50kmGame Shops & Cafes Per 50kmComic Con Events (2023-2024)Anime ConventionsScience MuseumsTotal Nerd Score /10
1Manchester4142328.39
2Norwich6391118.33
3Birmingham2103327.58
4Newcastle upon Tyne3141127.55
5Portsmouth6201007.48
6Leeds2180127.44
7Bristol2260227.41
8Bournemouth740017.22
9London11432127.07
10Derby8330307.07

Manchester – 8.39 on the ‘nerdiness’ scale

When nerds do eventually take over the world, their capital will be Manchester, which comes as no surprise as it is home to two of the biggest conventions in the UK, hosting MCM, Comic Con and the Play Expo, to name a few. 

With a whopping 14 games cafes and shops per 50 km, and four dedicated comic book stores per 50 km, it’s clear to see why Manchester is such a nerd magnet.

The city also boasts a rich cultural history related to film, music, comics, art and even role playing centres.  Manchester is also home to a variety of gaming and science themed bars including FanBoy3, Pixel Bar and Science and Industry bar

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Norwich –  8.33 on the ‘nerdiness’ scale

Perfect for gaming enthusiasts, Norwich comes in at a close second, boasting a mighty 39 game cafes and shops per 50 km, and a total of 6 comic book stores per 50 km for all your fantasy needs. 

It also hosts NORCON, a popular film and comic convention which hosts hundreds of stalls and features celebrity guests from some of your favourite fandoms, including Dr Who, Marvel and even Disney

Birmingham –  7.58 on the ‘nerdiness’ scale

Embrace your inner geek in the inner UK, as third on the list is Birmingham with a staggering 10 gaming cafes and shops per 50 km and three Comic Con conventions a year! 

It is also home to the NEC (National Exhibition Centre) which hosts a wide variety of events, including MCM Comic Con, UK Games Expo and Collectormania. 

You’ll also never know who or what you’ll bump into, as Birmingham boasts a collection of unique themed bars from Sonic the Hedgehog to Doctor Who, setting you up for a fun night out no matter your fandom of choice.

Newcastle Upon Tyne  –  7.55 on the ‘nerdiness’ scale

Newcastle sits in fourth place, with 14 games cafes and shops per 50km and three comic book stores per 50 km to immerse yourself in.

It is also home to Nerd Fest, a yearly entertainment convention with an abundance of stalls and fandoms.

The city also has many groups dedicated to nerdy pastimes, be that Magic: The Gathering, Dungeons and Dragons or sci-fi books; making the perfect social hub to meet new people or mingle with like-minded friends. 

Portsmouth –  7.48 on the ‘nerdiness’ scale

With an impressive 20 gaming cafes and stores per 50 km and six dedicated comic book stores, Portsmouth ranked fifth place on the geek-inspired list. 

Portsmouth also hosts Comic Con and other smaller conventions, including RPG and historical role playing. 

Portsmouth’s top nerdy spots to spend your time include Dice Board Game Lounge, Game Over and Geek Retreat.

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Methodology:              

Index study to find the nerdiest cities in the UK. Top 30 most cities in the UK by population were included in the study. Variables included were as follows.          

Comic book stores per 50km^2. The area in km^2 of each city was taken from google search (mainly Wikipedia). The number of comic book stores were found from google maps listings for “Comic Book Shops near [City]”.

Game shops / cafes per 50km^2. The number of game shops / cafes were found by google maps listings for “Game Shop near [City]”. Results included boardgames and other miscellaneous results.

The number of Comic Con events over the next year (2023-2024) was obtained from https://comic-cons.xyz/united-kingdom/   

The number of Anime Con events in 2023 (including past and future events) was obtained from https://fancons.co.uk/events/schedule.php?year=2023&type=anime&loc=uk

The number of science museums in each city was scraped from TripAdvisor.

Finally an average percentrank was taken as a “nerdy score” / 10 for each city.

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