Author Archives: David Rooney - Council Member

Navigating the trackless seas

  If you stand on the Thames riverside near the East India dock basin, the view south is extraordinary. In the foreground is the remarkable structure of The O2, originally the Millennium Dome. But look further into the distance, and … Continue reading

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Happy St Lubbock’s Day

  If you live in the UK or the Republic of Ireland, I hope you enjoyed the bank holiday earlier this week. Perhaps you went with family or friends to one of the many great museums with horology collections.  For … Continue reading

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Time for everyone

  In 1947, the British chronicler of timekeeping, Donald de Carle, wrote the following tribute to American engineer Warren Marrison: ‘it is to him we are indebted for the most accurate timekeeper in the world.’ Marrison worked at the Bell … Continue reading

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All the nation’s oil paintings online

  Richard Dunn’s blog post about the Board of Longitude online project reminded me of another exciting digitisation. The ‘Your Painting’s website, run by the BBC in partnership with the Public Catalogue Foundation, aims to show every oil painting held … Continue reading

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Seventy-Seven Clocks

  One of the security officers where I work stopped me a few weeks ago. He was reading a crime fiction novel and thought I might be interested. It’s called ‘Seventy-Seven Clocks’. You can perhaps see why he thought of … Continue reading

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Time on the BBC

  A couple of weeks ago, BBC radio listeners around the world celebrated the 90th anniversary of the corporation’s founding as the British Broadcasting Company. On 14 November, a special edition of Simon Mayo’s Drive Time show was broadcast live … Continue reading

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Time by telephone kiosk

  A few weeks ago I wrote about telephone kiosks. Today I’m returning to that theme, because I’m fascinated by how many clocks are embedded in our daily lives, hidden in the everyday infrastructure surrounding us.   The nights are … Continue reading

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Antiquarian horology in a graveyard

  Last weekend I went for a walk around King’s Cross and St Pancras, London. The area’s undergoing great change right now as part of a huge regeneration project. I was on the hunt for the mausoleum of one of … Continue reading

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A multiplicity of times

  David Thompson’s post about Metamec ‘time savings’ clocks excited me, because I am interested in the wider cultural meanings around seemingly innocuous phrases such as ‘time is money’. A few years ago, I wrote an article on the subject … Continue reading

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Decoupling civil timekeeping from Earth rotation

  I spend quite a lot of time thinking about leap seconds. They’re the extra seconds inserted into time at midnight on New Year’s Eve every few years. Recently they’ve been hitting the news, as a proposal led by some … Continue reading

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