Monday, 29 March 2010


Plans to move GMT forward by two hours in the summer and one hour in winter will be a boost to many of us as we have longer evenings to enjoy in the warm weather. Winters will be a bit more of a chore in the mornings but once again the evenings will allow more of us to enjoy those valuable rays of sunshine after school and work. The only problem I can see is for parents of small children persuading them that they must go to bed in summer when it is even brighter. I look forward to endless debate with my two children on this very subject.

The only objection which has been raised is over Scotland, where it is darker for longer in winter, affecting farmers and the school run in particular. Now I shudder at any accusation of being practical about this but it is my understanding that Scotland has its own government and its own traditions in many areas. I struggle to understand why Scotland cannot simply have a separate timescale for winter to suit the needs of the people of Scotland, with England, Wales and Northern Ireland allowed to choose a system for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If our government believes in devolution it should allow for such variations between the countries of the UK. After all Russia has around 20 time zones and the USA has about five. Why shouldn't we recognise regional differences and do what's best for everyone?


  1. Actually Russia has 9 time zones, just reduced from 11. Given that a day is 24 hours long, one would have to believe that Russia streched almost completely round the globe's circumference to think it might have 20!

  2. Sorry, I'm a politician, not a geographer...Thanks for your comment.