Villages are often perceived as close-knit societies to which residents feel strongly attached. In the era of mobilities, rural residents have more opportunities to choose their own degree and form of village attachment. This challenges the distinction between locals and newcomers, which is frequently made, where the latter are considered to have only weak village attachment compared to the former. To assess contemporary types of village attachment, we employed a latent class analysis using survey data on 7684 residents of small villages and outlying areas in the Netherlands. Based on their degrees of social, functional, cultural and environmental attachment we categorised rural residents into seven groups according to their type of village attachment: traditionally attached, socially attached, rural idyll seekers, rest seekers, slightly attached, footloose and reluctantly attached. The results demonstrate meaningful variation in people-place relationships in Dutch villages. Moreover, they underscore that simple distinctions such as that between locals and newcomers do not suffice to describe this variation. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.