So last week, the clocks went forward which seems to have had an adverse effect on some members of this household’s sleeping patterns. Michael and I had a bizarre conversation about it on Monday with bags under our eyes wishing we’d had an extra hour of shut eye. It’s that time when you have that yearly conversation discussing why this is a thing? We basically know that we move from Greenwich Mean Time to British Summer Time otherwise known as Daylight Saving Time or GMT+1 if one wants to be pedantic. However the journalist in me wanted discover the cold hard facts, so I went looking for them to see what all the fuss was about.
What I found out was that an American writer and Inventor called Benjamin Franklin first had the bright idea in 1784 whilst he was in Paris. He thought if people got up just a bit earlier it would save on the use of candles. However, this idea only reached our shores in 1907, when a builder called William Willett (who coincidentally is great-great-grandfather of Chris Martin from Coldplay), wrote a leaflet called The Waste of Daylight. He however had a vested interest in this, as being a keen golfer, he’d get cross when games had to be cut short because it got too dark. However, DST was only introduced into the UK in 1916, a year after he died.
Having scoured the internet for facts and figures, I do understand the benefits. Some say it cuts down on crime, prevents car accidents and extended daylight helps with the conservation of energy with opposing studies saying the energy saved during DST is offset by greater energy use during the dark winter months. For me, it also reinforces the season of spring coming into play. We’ve even been out in the garden after school enjoying the fresh air.
So as I type this now, I can safely say my body clock has slowly realigned with the new time and I’m not feeling quite so tired thank heavens. Fingers crossed this applies to my little ones and they’ll stop waking me up at 5.30am!