Monday, 31 October 2011

Time Zone Focus

The clocks changed yesterday and a few hours later we were acclimatised. Residents on Scottish islands may face some further changes if the UK follows Europe and makes daylight-saving a permanent feature. The BBC's Time-Zones item is worth looking at - for it gives insights into the workings of this system and the quirks that have arisen. To think that before the coming of trains and the introduction of railway timetables, it was the sun and unsynchronised public clocks that had to be used as the time-keeping devices.

Scottish Islands Explorer - sells in all time-zones


Anonymous said...

There was a phrase - 'local mean time' - in use and it indicated how a specific area would have a time of its own. However, this could be problematic with even market-towns having four or five different public clocks with a variety of times displayed. In The Mayor of Casterbridge, Thomas Hardy describes how there was (in Dorchester) a constant chiming of clocks throughout the hour - with some that were a half-hour 'late' ringing immediately before those that were a half-hour 'early'.

Anonymous said...

A lady of my intimate acquaintence would have done well in Hardy's Dorchester. There would have always been at least one clock to agree with her timekeeping.