When and why do the clocks change?

Saturday, 28th March 2020

DAYLIGHT Saving Time returns this weekend and we can look forward to lighter evenings as the winter fades away. But precisely when and why do the clocks spring forward?

The move to Daylight Savings Time, or British Summer Time means that the days are getting longer – but switching clocks also means a whole hour less in bed.

As we prepare to uncover the BBQ and inflate the paddling pool for those summer months here’s everything you need to know about Daylight Saving Time.

When do the clocks go forward?

Spring is officially here, the nights are becoming lighter, the temperature is getting warmer – and on Sunday, 29 March 2020, we will see the UK move to British Summer Time: at 1am to be precise.

But remember, you’ll need to change some clocks manually – or face constant bewilderment every time you catch a glimpse of the time on your oven or microwave. Or just leave them until the clocks go back again in autumn.

Why do the clocks go forward?

The moving of the clocks was first introduced during World War I by Germany and Austria, and then by the allies, to save on coal usage.

It was invented by George Vincent Hudson, a New Zealand entomologist in 1895, while British businessman William Willett is also credited with the idea as a way of getting up earlier and so having more daylight hours after work.

William Willett is the great-great-grandfather of Coldplay’s Chris Martin, who have a song called ‘Clocks’. While the UK has always had daylight savings time since it was first introduced, it came into widespread use across the world during the 1970s because of the energy crisis.

So what is Daylight Saving Time?

Daylight saving time (DST) or British summer time (BST) is the practice of advancing clocks during summer months by one hour so that in the evening daylight is experienced an hour longer, and normal sunrise times are sacrificed.

Typically, regions with summer time adjust clocks forward one hour close to the start of spring and adjust them backward in the autumn to standard time.

Will my mobile phone update?

Yes, but make sure you have automatic time updates set to on in your phone settings.

Wouldn’t it be easier not to meddle with it?

Some people absolutely think that’s the case and have been lobbying for a long time for Britain to stay on BST or GMT all year around. They argue that it would increase tourist revenue, cut crime, reduce accidents, save energy and generally make us all the more cheery.

Folk in Scotland, tend to disagree as parts of the country wouldn’t see daylight until 10am.