Clocking up the winter-time blues

Sat, Oct 29, 2011, 01:00

Sir, – Tomorrow morning (Sunday) at 2am, the clocks will go back one hour and “winter time” will formally begin.

Darkness will descend shortly after 4pm and we’ll all notice extra daylight in the morning.

“Summer time” will return on March 25th when the clocks go forward one hour and we can all look forward to longer days.

It’s been the practice for many decades now and those of us old enough, reluctantly accept the annual routine like the coming of Christmas.

However, why does so-called “Summer Time” kick in so late in the spring? With the clocks going back one hour on the last weekend of October, we have a seven-week run-in to the winter solstice on December 21st, the so-called “shortest day” of the year.

Yet, the clocks won’t go forward until 12 weeks after the winter solstice! If we are to take it that the period after 6pm is, for most of us, leisure time, we are clearly being denied at least 30 hours of precious daylight in the early evening.

Were the clocks to go forward seven weeks after the winter solstice to bring about a sense of annual daylight equilibrium, this would give us all more leisure time, the commencement of brighter evenings earlier in the year and would ultimately save hard-pressed householders much-needed cash on energy bills.

Could the powers-that-be who make these ridiculous decisions see sense for change and apply simple logic by ensuring that “summer time” commences in mid-February instead of late March?

The post-February denial of brighter evening to the citizens of Ireland and Britain is not only illogical and deprivational, but brings a whole new meaning to the phrase “daylight robbery”. – Yours, etc,


White Cross,

Duleek, Co Meath.