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It's that time again .....

Admin Kat
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It's that time again .....

Post by Kitkat on Fri 27 Mar 2015 - 19:10

The clocks go forward for the start of "British Summer Time" this Sunday - but is this age-old practice really necessary?

The Time Out London Blog has this to say about it:

We should be putting the clocks forward by two hours this Sunday. Here’s why…

In the small hours of Sunday morning, the clocks will go forward by an hour, marking the beginning – at last! – of British Summer Time. Naturally, people have been excited at the prospect of lighter evenings for quite some time.

But we shouldn’t be excited! We should be mad as hell. We can change the clocks whenever we want, and although you may not have given it much thought, the way we do it now is rubbish. Here are three options for a sunnier future.


Right now, the clocks go forward on the last Sunday in March, and go back seven months later on the last Sunday in October. But these are completely arbitrary dates – there’s no reason that, as you read these words, it couldn’t be Summer Time already.

If we put the clocks forward four weeks earlier, we’d have already enjoyed an entire month where it was light until 6.43pm or later. Think how much more you’d have enjoyed March if we’d done that.

‘But what about the mornings?!’, I hear you whine in a voice only a mother could love. Well, sunrise would still have been at an eminently bearable 7.45am (that’s pretty much how it is at the end of January), not to mention it actually starts getting light from 5.56am onwards.

Just ask yourself where you’d rather have that hour of sunlight: 6.45–7.45 in the morning, while you’re hitting ‘snooze’ on your alarm, or 5.43–6.43 in the evening, when you’re flouncing around town after work like you’re Madame Pantalons-du-Fancy? Let’s break it down:

Who’s awake at 7am? Some people, admittedly, even if they’re (shudder) morning people, who as a group have enough advantages in life as it is.
Who’s awake at 6pm? Pretty much everybody.

Ever heard of a little something called ‘the greatest good for the greatest number’, buster? This is a no-brainer.

But this is just the start.

We can do more.

Much more.


What if it was just British Summer Time all year round? Spoiler alert: it would be exquisite, sensual and endlessly refreshing, like a joyful riot of sexy photons caressing your skin at all times.

For 11 months of the year, sunset would be at 5pm or later. Yes, in the very darkest depths of winter, the sun would only rise at 9am, but see 1) for why this isn’t that bad, and also consider the following…

– Do you ever meet a friend at the pub before work? Of course not. CASE CLOSED, YOUR HONOUR.
– Moving the clocks around willy-nilly is kind of hacky at best, or an unnatural affront to the gods at worst.
– My gran thought changing the clocks caused inclement weather, which is obviously insane… but what if she was on to something? Eh?

But there’s yet another way. Yes, the Full English may be the world’s greatest breakfast, but when it comes to timezones, it’s time (time!) London got Continental.


The whole year we’re an hour behind the rest of Europe. But is that strictly necessary? NOPE Check out the places in Europe which are west of London but still on Central European Time – just a few backwater po-dunk towns like MADRID and LISBON (Edit: right, yes, Lisbon is on the same time as the UK):

So we’d fit right in. We’d have all the winter-time advantages of Option 2 (no more miserable dark-at-4pm days!) but by joining CET, we’d get yet another hour of evening sunshine in the summer. I’m talking DOUBLE SUMMERTIME, people! So, right now, it would already be light until 7.20pm. When the clocks go forward, it would then be light until 8.28pm. And at the very height of summer, our dreamy summer evenings would linger on until 10.22pm. That’s an undeniably gorgeous prospect.

Here’s how the current situation and our bright European future compare. I’ve taken the liberty of highlighting wastefully early sunrises (sunshine at 5am is pointless), painfully dark mornings (sunrise > 8am) and dingy evenings (sunset < 5pm).

See which side has more red ink? The present. So many pointlessly early sunrises. So many doomily dark nights. Wouldn’t you swap them for a few dark mornings in a heartbeat?

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents are in favour of it.

The environmentalists say that it could save 500,000 tonnes of CO2 each year.

Even the farmers are neutral or slightly in favour.

So what did our elected politicians do with a bill which merely called on the Government to study the effects of a clock change?

‘The bill was again debated on the floor of the House of Commons where it was filibustered out of Parliament by opponents. Angus MacNeil, MP for Na h-Eileanan an Iar, argued that it would adversely affect the population of Northern Scotland, while Jacob Rees-Mogg, MP for North East Somerset, tried to introduce an amendment to give Somerset its own time zone, 15 minutes behind London, in order to highlight what he saw as the absurdities of the bill. With all its allocated time used up, the bill could proceed no further through Parliament.’

That’s right, they literally talked the idea to death.

Umberto Cocopop
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Umberto Cocopop on Sat 28 Mar 2015 - 13:59

Personally, I'd like to see us move to GMT+1 permanently. i.e. GMT+2 in the summer.

I hate the really short days of winter and I'd much prefer it to be light until 5PM in December even though it would mean it not getting light until ~9AM. It wouldn't affect me anyway as since hearing that most heart attacks occur at 10AM I don't get up till 11AM for health reasons.

Yes, the Scots would suffer very late mornings - but who cares? A nation whose men wear skirts cannot be taken seriously.

Admin Kat
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Kitkat on Sun 29 Mar 2015 - 16:34

@Umberto Cocopop wrote:since hearing that most heart attacks occur at 10AM

Really? .... Where did you hear that?
Admin Kat
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Kitkat on Sun 29 Mar 2015 - 20:23

Well, I have since looked it up (this heart attack theory) and it seems there have been quite a few studies done which have brought researchers to that conclusion - i.e. that heart attacks are more likely to happen between the hours of 5am and noon - and also that the ones that occur atthat time are actually more "deadly" than other times of the day [life cycle].  Of course, we know these survey things can't always be taken as actual 'fact', depending on a whole load of factors which need to be taken into account ... like where the group taking part in the survey are from, their limitations and lifestyles, environments, etc ... amongst other things ...

One of these studies was done with 800 patients in Spain (for instance):

Other research covers America only:,,20188749,00.html

and one 'Dr Sinatra' has gone a step further - warning that having sex over the weekend can actually add to your chances of having a heart attack on a Monday morning:   surprised   rock

It really doesn't matter how many of these 'surveys' and 'studies' are done.  With all the different agendas involved (by the people who carry out these surveys and researches), they really don't mean anything of much worth to the individual.  No two individual's circumstances are exactly the same as the next, and being lumped into a group doesn't necessarily mean that the answers will fit all.
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Whiskers on Mon 30 Mar 2015 - 14:54

@Umberto Cocopop wrote:Personally, I'd like to see us move to GMT+1 permanently. i.e. GMT+2 in the summer.

Me too.  agree   The dark mornings don't bother me.  People make their day fit around whatever time is on the clock anyhow.  
The body clock is the one that matters and that's the hardest one to change.
Admin Kat
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Kitkat on Mon 30 Mar 2015 - 16:28

@Whiskers wrote:The body clock is the one that matters and that's the hardest one to change.

You said it, Whiskers! :thumb: and it really, really, really annoys me that some anonymous, distant bunch of pen-pushers sitting at their 9 to 5 desk in a government building somewhere - are dictating to me (and the rest of the country) as to where the hands should go on my clock, what time I should get up, go to sleep etc. annoyed

All this started with the farmers - to do with milking the cows etc. I've lived on a farm during school holidays (my uncle's place back in Ireland). The cows had to be milked every morning - when the milk is busting and ready to be pumped out of their swelling teats. That happens at the same time early in the morning whether it's dark or not. Every morning without fail my cousin would get up at 5 o'clock, to bring the cows up from the meadow into the barn to be milked. Dark or light, that was the time it occurred. Chrissake! ... if it happens to be too dark during the winter mornings at 5 o'clock - then the farmers just go about their chores a bit later when it is light (and finish earlier or later for the same reason). No problem. No need for someone sitting at a desk in a faraway city (who's probably never even seen a cow in real life anyway) telling them what to do and what not to do. angry
Admin Kat
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Re: It's that time again .....

Post by Kitkat on Sun 29 Oct 2017 - 0:21

So apparently it's not the cows or the farmers that started the problem after all .... and every year at this time I rant and rave and blame the farmers for the whole stupid debacle - and no-one has ever come forward to let me know what a silly moo I was being all that time ...  toetap   Neutral 


Why do the clocks go forward for British Summer Time?

BST came into existence with the Summer Time Act, passed by Parliament in 1916.
Germany was the first country to adopt the clock-changing plan on April 30, 1916, and on May 21, Britain followed suit, during the height of the First World War.
The campaign which led to the creation of BST and Daylight Savings Time (DST) was started by William Willett in 1907 in a bid to stop people wasting valuable hours of light in the summer months.
By setting the clocks back in winter, Brits get an earlier sunrise and earlier sunset.
In summer the sun rises and sets one hour later than it would without DST.
In a pamphlet called 'The Waste of Daylight' Willett suggested clocks should be advanced by 80 minutes over four stages in April, and reversed the same way in September.

The clocks originally started going back because it was a bid to stop people wasting valuable hours of light in the summer months
Supporters at the time of the proposal argued the scheme would save energy by reducing domestic coal consumption.
They also said it would increase supplies available for the huge manufacturing cost of the war effort.
It has been in place ever since – despite criticism from some groups.

Have I gained or lost an hour of sleep?

When the clocks went forward in March we lost an hour of sleep – which means come October 29 Brits will get an extra hour in bed on Sunday morning!
The clocks will go back one hour at 2am on Sunday morning. But be aware, while your smartphone and other internet-connected devices will automatically update, many clocks in your home and car will not.
So it is best to do a check of your watches and clocks when you wake up on Sunday to avoid turning up an hour early for whatever you might be doing that day.

It's still a stupid and unnecessary custom/practice, whatever the so-called stupid reasons ... angry

    Current date/time is Sun 20 May 2018 - 22:34