A Midsummer Day’s Dream


Newgrange, County Meath

Spaghetti Hoop writes:

The summer solstice will occur today when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer at 23.5 degrees north latitude.

This will occur at 4:54 pm in Dublin (IST). However, we’ve rounded up or down that time nationally, so I guess it’s different in the West, South and North by x-minutes.

From a purely scientific viewpoint, I’d like to hear about the mid-summer times around the country.

I’m advocating the shift against using British Summertime and ditching that hour change to suit Irish work and lives and live with nature, not against it.

We once had a brief Irish mean time in 1916.

When you look at the British-led reasons for the hour change – agriculture and school-going children – it’s so out of date. When some of us work with colleagues around the world via conference calls, that hour change is an absolute pain.

It would be great to hear what everyone has to offer on this subject at this mid-year moment.

Note: this change is proposed and likely by the European Union for 2021, which could mean an hour difference between the 26 and the 6 counties if Brexit goes badly.

While that sounds crazy, so did having two currencies on the island once and people adapted.

And it’s probably a good kind of crazy in the interests of Irish unification – if anyone might be still into that concept.

Happy Solstice Broadsheeters. Forget all your troubles and enjoy things planetary.

We’re so lucky to live in a maritime temperate land on no faults and have sun and rain in equal measures.

Pic: Highbrow


33 thoughts on “A Midsummer Day’s Dream

  1. newsjustin

    Happy Solstice. Enjoy the extra daylight.

    Honestly, I think most people (me included) find the discussion around the extra hour, etc very confusing.

    1. Qwerty123

      In fairness, it seems you find lots of things confusing. And assume everyone else is the same.

  2. Col

    I would prefer moving permanently to the time we use during Summer months. As in, it would stay brighter later in the evenings (the sun wouldn’t rise until around 9am and set at around 5pm in December).

    1. H

      Absolutely agree, long before Brexit was a thing there was a small but significant movement in the UK who were pushing for this but it got shut down by the Scots in Parliament who were complaining about children having to go to school in the dark. They should have given them independence and let them keep GMT in my opinion….Studies have shown that, in general, people would make better use of an extra hour of daylight in the evening than they currently do with those they have early in the morning

      1. The Old Boy

        The Scots are dead against changing the system, but here in London it gets dark at half past three in December and January, which is irritating.

        1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

          Well eff off back to where you came from, then.
          You snowflakes sicken me.

          1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

            Nope, it’s just common or garden bile. It’s the new thing, apparently. I like to follow trends.

          2. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

            I’d have to throw it at myself, though, as I’m now Broadsheet’s Nigel Farage, you silly woman.

  3. The Old Boy

    Unlike sunrise and sunset times, the solstice occurs simultaneously the world over.

  4. ciaran

    “When you look at the British-led reasons for the hour change – agriculture and school-going children – it’s so out of date”

    You should explain why you think they are out of date. You really have no point to your “argument”.

    1. Spaghetti Hoop

      Ah no I’m not arguing at all ciaran – merely inviting discussion. Plus getting excited about ditching this clock-meddling in two years. It was introduced in 1916 to enable an extra hour of daylight in the mornings for children walking and cycling to school, and for farmers to conduct their work productively at the beginning of the day. Our transportation and working routines have changed significantly in a century, e.g. students tend to take motorized transport now, and the current road casualty stats indicate that road accidents are higher during the evenings than in the mornings. Less of the population now work on farm-holdings – more are in offices or work from home. There’s a growing opinion that we waste a lot of natural daylight while we are still sleeping, and crave it in the evenings for after-work activities. Ireland gets between 25 and 40 minutes more daylight anyhow as we are west of GMT, so I think the change will be less severe for us. In terms of seasonal disorder and depression sufferers, I’m curious whether the darker mornings but brighter evenings might make a difference and would it also mean we use less energy – lighting and heating for example. I guess TIME will tell, ha!

      1. Qwerty123

        Hi Sphagetti hoop, you are mistaken to the reason why this was introduced. It was the British who copied the Germans in the first world war, to save coal burning.


        There were hour changes throughout history, but the most recent dates to 1916

        And yes, I agree, the hour change is completely out of date, and should revert back to GMT in October and stay that way.

        1. bob

          That’s opposite of what he wants… I think?!? i.e. stay at “summer time” with longer evenings all year round.

          1. Qwerty123

            Nah, i think the MEPS voted for no changes to summer time going forward, so we will stay on GMT+0 once they go back in 2021

            Ireland will have to stick to Britain unfortunately due to northern Ireland, unless they change also.

            Do people really want daylight at almost 11pm?

        2. Spaghetti Hoop

          You may well be right there about WW1 and energy-saving.The Brits changed the clocks to align with CET in WW2 and then back again in 1947. I think my reasons stated above were those supporting the change back to BST at that time and retaining it when the topic would crop up in subsequent decades.

          Because we (Ireland) are aligned to GMT I wonder if we’ve had much of a say in the matter. And now that our EU have taken the initiative, are we going to experience more difficulties than benefits as we communicate so much with the UK. Like all changes, probably get used to it.

          1. Qwerty123

            I would say it will be pushed back from 2021. Either way, we will have to comply if within the EU

      2. bob

        Ah right… I was very confused by what you meant. You want to *keep* British Summer Time (or Irish Standard Time really) then. And stay at GMT+1 all year round. Sounds good to me!

  5. Spaghetti Hoop

    By aligning with a specific time zone to our east, i.e.GMT, then we are rounding up

  6. Zaccone

    I’m entirely in favour of moving to permanent summer time. That extra hour of sunlight in the evenings is far more valuable. Hopefully it happens soon.

  7. :-Joe

    Ye, ditch the unnecessary complication and I believe it is inevitable that we will eventually and collectively reach a consensus around common sense to go much further and ditch the Gregorian calendar in favour of a more natural astronomical 13 Month / 28 Day lunar calendar.

    Something ideally like a 13 months of 4 x 7 / 24hour days with one extra blank day and two extra blank days on leap years.

    The winter solstice 21st December will become the new, New years day, and it will be 48hours or 72 Hours(Leap Year) long each year.

    At the moment, apart from the main Gregorian, Chinese and Jewish calendars there are over 40 others so it’s not as strange an idea as you might think.

    The lunar system puts humans more in tune with nature and the natural cycles of the moon, sun and other stars in line with astronomy and much like the pagans and many other previous native cultures throughout history.

    It also has many benfits to help make calculating, organising, accounting with dates far less complicated and will be far more practical, efficient and cost effective for business and by looking at the sky humans will be able to tell the time and date naturally, thus being more in sync with nature and the universe.

    The current Gregorian system is so out of sync with nature and common practicality it’s ridiculous. Just try to define what a month is as a unit of time?… 27 / 28 / 30 / 31 ??? Also there are 52 weeks in a year and 4 weeks in a month or lunar cycle, 4 x 12 = 48 weeks, so where are the other 4 weeks going? It’s completely daft… e.g. You work for 13 months and you get paid for 12.

    All thanks to the bloody Romans with a big helping hand by christianity aligning our calendar based on easter and jesus instead of the universe and the natural world around us.

    The Romans also screwed up how we learn mathematics by removing “0” zero as the first number when we calculate from 1 to 10 instead of previously using 0 – 9 but that’s another story…


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