Tick Tock when will the clock change stop? 

 Nimra Ahmed explores the history of Daylight Saving Time and whether or not Irish people want to continue this practice.

At 2 am on Sunday, October 31st the clocks will be going back an hour.  

This time change occurs every year across the EU in order to make use of natural light for a longer period. During winter, clocks go back an hour and in summer they go one hour ahead.  

“I would very much like daylight saving time to be scrapped. It takes some time to get used to the time change. If I had a choice, I would stick to winter timings as summers are for a shorter period in Ireland,” said Sarah Boland (36) an engineer from Dublin.    

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The impact of this change varies. Countries further from the equator that experience more hours of darkness, benefit the most from this system.   

According to EU law, the clocks should go back an hour in all member states on the last Sunday in October and go forwards on the last Sunday of March. 

“I would very much like daylight saving time to be scrapped”


This all began in 1895 because George Hudson from New Zealand wanted to spend more time outside studying insects so he set the clock back. 

Over in Europe, William Willett also advocated for the change and was backed by Winston Churchill. 

In 1916, Germans decided to try it out and from there the idea spread to other European countries and eventually reached Russia and the United States.  

Post war, many counties abandoned the idea but the tradition has continued in Ireland, parts of Europe, Canada and the US. 

Every year there is a debate about abandoning this practice and finally in 2019, the European parliament voted to scrap Daylight Saving Time altogether. 

This was to be implemented this year, unfortunately, EU member states could not come to an agreement on whether summer time was to be followed or winter time. 

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The debate continues and many Irish people are speaking out against the time change.

“I don’t see much advantage in the time change. It is just a hassle and I feel that other countries are surviving then why not us. Does it matter which time we choose – summer or winter? Pick an option and just stick to it,” said Diarmuid Murphy (25) a student from Dublin.  

“I was thrilled to know that this year the clocks would be going back even though the EU member states had decided to cancel it. I think it makes a lot of sense to get that extra hour of daylight in winters,” said Keeva Din (40) a sales assistant from Dublin.  

“Does it really make a difference in our lives? I don’t think so, I think this is just a useless exercise that doesn’t affect the majority of the people. Every year there is talk of getting rid of this issue but every year it is still going strong,” said Paula Walsh (32) a teacher from Dublin.   

At least for this year clocks will go back. March 2022 might be a different story. By then there may be a conclusion to this debate.  

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