British Summer Time

If you think about it – we all have the ability to manipulate time. Perhaps not in a worthwhile way like Dr Who or some omnipotent being only seen in Star Trek, but in our own small way we are all Timelords when we move our clocks backwards or forwards according to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) or Daylight Saving Time (DST).

Daylight Saving Time, or as we call it – British Summer Time (BST), was introduced 100 years ago in 1916, after years of campaigning by William Willett. Willett was an early riser and enjoyed the odd round of golf and decided it would be a good idea to force everyone out of bed early during the summer months ‘to enjoy the sunshine’ and of course – take advantage of the extra hours of daylight first thing to get to work. Lighter evenings would also mean Willet could keep playing golf later on in the day (so of course, no self-interest there then). Sadly, time wasn’t on his side and he died before he could see his temporal meddling passed into law.

BST was only introduced after Germany and Austria brought in their own Daylight Saving Time during the first World War. It was so that the countries could save money instead of pumping it into fuel costs and it also meant workers could toil for a bit longer. Recognising that in practice DST was a good thing, Britain followed suit.

In the UK today, some campaigners have argued that we should just keep to one set of time rules and have DST all year around because it would mean fewer accidents on dark winter mornings and give people more leisure time in the evenings. But that’s not all that DST would offer – burglary claims in winter are significantly higher than in summer. So having lighter evenings for longer would mean less undercover darkness for anyone tempted to break in.

Of course, manipulating time isn’t the only thing you can do to protect your home and belongings. Making sure you’ve got enough cover for all your worldly goods should be a priority; and it’s not just the stuff in your house, think about what’s in your humble garden shed – you might be surprised at how much everything inside is actually worth. Also, having a decent security system could save you money on your home insurance – it’s a win-win. So, let’s see how much you could save yourself when you for home insurance.

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