The clocks will go forward this Sunday for British Summer Time – meaning we’ll lose one hour of sleep.
Each year, the clocks change between Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and British Summer Time (BST). Switching to BST, which is also known as Daylight Savings Time, means there is more light in the evenings and less in the morning.
Despite these changes happening each year, many people are often unsure about which way we’re setting our clocks. One easy way of remembering this is “Spring forward, fall back,” meaning we move the clocks forward in the Spring, and backwards in the Autumn/fall.
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Now spring has finally sprung, you might be wondering when the clock change is going to happen, Mirror reports. Here’s everything you need to know about the clock change this weekend, including what time it happens and why we do it in the UK:
When do the clocks go forward?
In 2022 the clocks go forward on Sunday, March 27, marking the start of BST. That means the change will be happening this weekend. The clocks always change at 1am on the last Sunday of the month so there is as little disruption as possible.
That means that you’ll suddenly see the time on your phone automatically jump from 1am to 2am, meaning we lose an hour of sleep. Last year this fell on Sunday, March 28. The clocks will go back again on the final Sunday of October, which falls on October 30 this year.
Why do we change the clocks twice a year?
BST, also known as Daylight Saving Time, was brought in initially to help people maximize the sunlight hours in a day.
The idea was first proposed by American scientist Benjamin Franklin in 1784. He suggested that if people got up earlier in the morning, when it was lighter, it would save using so many candles. However, it wasn’t until 1907 when a serious proposal was made by builder William Willett in Britain.
Willett, Coldplay singer Chris Martin’s great-great-grandfather, was angry that daylight was being wasted in the summer, so he self-published a pamphlet called “The Waste of Daylight.” It took quite a bit of convincing to bring in an official change, and it wasn’t until after the builder died it was brought in.
BST was introduced via the Summer Time Act 1916 as a way to save fuel and money. The logic was that it was pointless to waste electricity when there was actual daylight still to be used.
How to help your body adjust to the clock change
Sadly, we lose an hour of sleep when the clocks go forward, and it can be hard for our bodies to adjust. Dr Lindsay Browning, psychologist, neuroscientist and sleep expert for And So To Bed, offered some handy advice in order to cope with the change.
She said: “When the clocks go forward on March the 27th, we lose an hour’s sleep. In order to try to avoid feeling sleep deprived when you lose this hour, it can be a good idea to gradually alter your bedtime two to three days before the clocks change so that you get used to falling asleep and waking up earlier.”
In order to do this, try going to bed 15 minutes earlier and waking 15 minutes earlier the first night, then 30 minutes earlier than your usual bedtime and wake time the second night, followed by 45 minutes the one after that. On Saturday, March 26 you can go to bed an hour earlier than your usual bedtime and set your morning alarm for your usual wake time.
Dr Browning added: “This way you will not lose any sleep on the 27th when the clocks change. It is also a good idea to move your breakfast, lunch and dinner times a little earlier each day too, since the timing of mealtimes also has an impact on our internal clock.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.