Why do we have daylight saving time?
There are various reasons for this practice being carried out, in America it is to help farmers with crop harvesting. In the UK, however, the idea was first driven into the limelight by a builder from Kent called William Willett.
According to History UK, “The story goes that one day on his way back from riding his horse in Petts Wood near his home in the early 1900s, he noticed many of the blinds and curtains in the neighbouring houses were still drawn, even though it was light. This led him to consider the idea of adapting the time to better fit daylight hours.”
Whilst he wasn’t the first person to come up with the idea in the UK, he was perhaps the most driven. He used his own resources to create and distribute a pamphlet about the benefits of adapting the clocks to daylight hours during the summer. It wasn’t successful at first, but during World War One the idea resurfaced as a way to conserve coal, and the act was finally passed through parliament on 17th May 1916, with clocks going forwards one hour on the following Sunday, 21st May. And the rest, as they say, is history.