Updated UK history of Summer Time

Peter Ilieve peter at aldie.co.uk
Tue Jan 6 19:30:19 UTC 1998

On Jan 6, 10:28am, Paul Eggert wrote:
> I agree; many thanks to Messrs. Ilieve and Myers!  If only we could have
> such definitive sources for our other tz entries.

Thank you (modestly taking bow :-), it has been a case of Mr Myers prodding
me into action after a bit of a layoff. As you can see, he has already
been busy in the UL again today. If only indeed---let this be a challenge
to the rest of you.

> I'm working on a proposed patch that will make the europe file match
> the laws more precisely.  This shouldn't change tz's behavior but
> it'll be nicer.  It'll also include Ephraim Silverberg's Israel update,
> which is the most pressing change.

If you could hang about until say Monday I will correct the various
typos and add some more details. I have to go away again for a few days
so can't do it before then.

> [Alex Livingston wrote:]
>    May I also highlight the difference between "summertime" and "summer time"
>    ... I'd also like to express my aversion to the abbreviation "no."
>    ... Finally, do all the various directives etc. use the term "GMT"?
>    Should consideration be given to using "UT" instead?
> When referring to an original source we should say whatever the
> original source said.  For "summer time", the EU seems to say
> "summer-time" in this context, at least on their web sites.  I don't
> know what the British Government says.  I'd guess "No." is common in
> the British legal system, so we should keep it.  I also presume that
> the EU says "UTC" and the British Government says "GMT", so I'll
> update the comments accordingly when I come up with a proposed patch.

That is right, it is to do with accuracy of citation. All the Summer Time,
summertime and summer-time variants are cited exactly as the Orders, etc,
have them. Note in particular that the Directives changed from summertime
to summer-time after the European Parliament got involved in the process.
When commenting, I refer to Summer Time (with caps) because that is how I
have always known it.

The `No' for number is also how the SR&Os were cited. In fact, they
were really cited as S.R. & O., 1945, No. 1208 but I trimmed some
of the punctuation. I will go back to using `No.'. I refuse to consider #
as we just don't use it to mean number over here, sorry. :-)

The EU documents use Greenwich Mean Time and GMT throughout. The UK
ones use Greenwich mean time.

I was going to mention this separately, but as we are talking about
UTC I may as well mention it here. There is a Bill currently before
Parliament, introduced by Lord Tanlaw under whatever the Lords call
their `private bill' procedure, that would substitute the words
`Coordinated Universal Time' for `Greenwich mean time' in the three
Acts defining time (Interpretation Act 1978, Interpretation Act
(Northern Ireland) 1954 and Summer Time Act 1972). I have asked the
Home Office about the Government's view of this and they are officially
neutral. This means there is almost no chance of the Bill becoming
law as it will not get enough time.

The definition of `Coordinated Universal Time' in the Bill is
 `the time scale maintained by the National Physical Laboratory
  and known as UTC (NPL)'
I don't know what this actually means.

You can see the progress of this Bill by going to http://www.parliament.uk/,
following the Search the Parliamentary Publications Database link, and
entering `Coordinated Universal Time' as a query.

>    >An Order made under the the Isle of Man (War Legislation) Act, 1914
>    --------------------> ^ - ^
> There are several other instances of this, ...

I plead guilty as charged. :-)
It is a question of over-enthusiastic cut & paste I think.

		Peter Ilieve		peter at aldie.co.uk

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