When do the clocks go back and when does British Summer Time end?

When do the clocks go back and when does British Summer Time end?

As clocks in England went back one hour on October 29, it's safe to say that autumn is well and truly here.

It marked the end of British Summer Time (BST), meaning the UK is now operating on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) — the standard time zone against which all others are set.

Of course, the jump back meant that most Brits got to enjoy an extra hour in bed.

However, it also means that it gets darker earlier across the nation and we're looking at shorter days and longer, colder nights, as winter approaches.

When do the clocks go back?

The clocks change twice a year — once in March when they go forward an hour, and once on the last Sunday of October, when they go back an hour.

We gained an extra hour at 2am on Sunday, October 29.

Usually, your smartphone and laptop will update automatically. However, analog clocks and other digital clocks, like car and oven clocks, often need to be changed manually - so make sure they've been updated!

 (Alex Lentati)
(Alex Lentati)

Why do the clocks go forward?

The custom of changing the clocks by an hour began more than 100 years ago. In 1916, Parliament passed the Summer Time Act, thereby creating British Summer Time (BST).

It was the result of a campaign started in 1907 by William Willett, to stop people wasting valuable hours of light in the summer months and to save fuel during the war.

Germany was the first country to adopt the clock-changing plan in April that year and the UK followed in May.

While Daylight Savings Time is observed in most places in Europe, North America, and Australasia, most places in Africa and Asia don't observe the practice.

When will the clocks go forward again?

The clocks go forward again on Sunday, March 24, 2024.