Portal:Isle of Wight

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Introduction

IsleOfWightFromTheISS.jpg

The Isle of Wight (/wt/; also referred to informally as The Island or abbreviated to IoW) is a county and the largest and second-most populous island in England. It is in the English Channel, about 2 miles (3.2 km) off the coast of Hampshire, separated by the Solent. The island has resorts that have been holiday destinations since Victorian times, and is known for its mild climate, coastal scenery, and verdant landscape of fields, downland and chines.

The island has been home to the poets Swinburne and Tennyson and to Queen Victoria, who built her much-loved summer residence and final home Osborne House at East Cowes. It has a maritime and industrial tradition including boat-building, sail-making, the manufacture of flying boats, the hovercraft, and Britain's space rockets. The island hosts annual music festivals including the Isle of Wight Festival, which in 1970 was the largest rock music event ever held. It has well-conserved wildlife and some of the richest cliffs and quarries for dinosaur fossils in Europe.

Selected article

The Medina estuary showing Newport and Cowes.

The River Medina is the main river of the Isle of Wight, England, rising at St Catherine's Down near Blackgang and Chale, and flowing generally northwards through the capital Newport, towards the Solent at Cowes. The river is a navigable tidal estuary from Newport northwards, where it takes the form of a ria (a drowned valley).

Its current state has occurred because the Medina used to be a tributary of what was once the "River Solent" and had a much larger catchment area. As the Solent valley flooded and the island eroded, the river received less water flow and more sediment, causing it to become more tidal.

The river is bridged at Newport. Cowes is connected to East Cowes by a chain ferry known as the Cowes Floating Bridge.

The name Medina comes from the Old English Meðune meaning "the middle one", and the current pronunciation was first recorded as 'Medine' in 1196.

The river is used by yachtsmen as a very safe harbour. Along the banks of the Medina there are many old warehouses and wharves where in the past flying boats, hovercraft and steam ships were developed and built. The Classic Boat Museum displays much of the river's history alongside the history of yachting. The Island Harbour Marina, at the site of an old tidal mill, is also on the river, about two miles from Newport.

As well as the chain ferry, the River Medina has several small ferries which cater mainly for sailors.

Medina, Western Australia is a suburb in Perth named after it. Read more...

Selected biography

Ellen MacArthur in 2010
MacArthur in 2007

Dame Ellen Patricia MacArthur, DBE (born 8 July 1976) is a retired English sailor, from Whatstandwell near Matlock in Derbyshire, now based in Cowes, Isle of Wight.

MacArthur is a successful solo long-distance yachtswoman. On 7 February 2005 she broke the world record for the fastest solo circumnavigation of the globe, a feat which gained her international renown. Francis Joyon, the Frenchman who had held the record before MacArthur, was able to recover the record again in early 2008.

Following her retirement from professional sailing on 2 September 2010, MacArthur announced the launch of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, a charity that works with business and education to accelerate the transition to a circular economy. Read more...

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  • ... that the largest British colony of common wall lizards live in walls around Ventnor, and a wall specially designed as a habitat for them was recently built at the Botanic Garden in the town?

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