Daylight Saving Time UK 2019: Why did the clocks go forward in the UK?

Sabrina Barr
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Daylight Saving Time UK 2019: Why did the clocks go forward in the UK?

As the trees start to blossom and the temperature begins to steadily increase, Brits across the country will eagerly be awaiting the arrival of British Summer Time.

Now that the spring equinox has been and gone, the next stage of welcoming the warmer weather with open arms is the biannual changing of the clocks.

Here's everything you need to know about the clocks going forward an hour for Daylight Savings:

When do the clocks go forward?

This year, the clocks will go forward an hour at 1am on Sunday 31 March, the same date as Mother's Day.

It could be worth setting yourself a reminder prior to the clock change, so that you don't end up being caught out and waking up later than planned.

If you have a smartphone, your clock may update automatically in the early morning.

However, if you don't, then it may be advisable to put up Post-it notes in your kitchen and mark the day on your calendar to ensure the clock change doesn't slip your mind.

How will the clock change affect me?

While the initial changing of the clocks may make you feel slightly fatigued, in the long-run, having an extra hour of sunlight in the evening is something that many will likely cherish.

When the clocks go forward on Sunday 31 March, we will no longer be in Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

Our time will instead be labelled as British Summer Time (BST), which is sometimes referred to as GMT+1.

This is important to note if you're planning on travelling or FaceTiming someone's who's abroad, so that you don't get your timings mixed up.

When will the clocks go back again?

On Sunday 27 October at 2am, the clocks will go back an hour once more, marking an end to British Summer Time.

Why was Daylight Savings introduced?

British Summer Time was first introduced as part of the Summer Time Act of 1916.

The act came into effect following a campaign by builder William Willett, who proposed that the clocks go forward in spring and back in winter so that people could spend more time outdoors during the day and save energy.

Willett wrote about his proposal in a pamphlet called "The Waste of Daylight", which was published in 1907.

While Daylight Savings may have been established following Willett's proposal, he wasn't the first to put forward the idea of preserving daylight by changing the clocks.

In 1784, Benjamin Franklin wrote about a similar idea in a satirical letter sent to the editor of the Journal of Paris.

The ancient Romans also followed a similar practice in order to use their time efficiently during the day.