The coming of spring and the changing of the clocks means lighter evenings, more time spent outside and a brighter drive home.
But family safety charity RoSPA is campaigning to increase the number of evening daylight hours even further, in order to save lives and improve quality of life.
RoSPA wants to see Britain move to Single/Double Summer Time (SDST) which would mean the country would now be an extra hour ahead (GMT+2), although the real benefits of the move would be when the clocks go back in the autumn.
Each year, the number of people killed on the country’s roads spikes immediately after the autumn clock change, due to the suddenly-darker evenings. This particularly affects vulnerable road users, such as children walking home from school and cyclists.
Errol Taylor, RoSPA’s acting chief executive, said: “We can reduce the number of people being needlessly killed on our roads each winter with this simple change. By moving to SDST, through the darker months the country would be on GMT+1, meaning extra daylight in the evenings.
“Not only would this simple and cheap move save lives, but it would also mean an average gain of 55 minutes “accessible” evening daylight for every day of the year – giving us more time for outdoor activities, more vitamin D, a boost to tourism, a reduction in opportunistic crime carried out under darkness, and a reduction in carbon emissions thanks to the energy we would save.”
RoSPA is calling on the Government to carry out a two-year trial change to SDST to assess the benefits of advancing the clocks by one hour.
The most recent attempt to change legislation was Rebecca Harris MP’s Private Members’ Bill, “Daylight Savings Bill”, which was talked out by a small number of MPs, despite having significant support, in 2012.
For more information on RoSPA’s campaign, and the benefits of SDST, see www.rospa.com/campaigns-fundraising/current/lighter-evenings.