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50 years on

Metric Views - Tue, 05/19/2015 - 23:18
Sunday 24th May will be the 50th anniversary of the announcement by the British Government that the UK was to “go metric” within 10 years.  However, 50 years later we are still little more than half way there.  Why has … Continue reading → 0

1963 and “white heat” in Scarborough

Metric Views - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 00:31
Fifty years ago, the Government made a low-key announcement of a change in policy in relation to the use of metric units by industry. We consider how a speech by the Leader of the Opposition two years earlier had signalled … Continue reading → 1

Towards a metric Britain (in fits and starts)

Metric Views - Tue, 05/12/2015 - 22:32
We highlight some events during the UK’s prolonged transition to a single, simple, rational and universal measurement system, and look forward to an important anniversary later this month. Almost two hundred years, and still counting. That is the period since … Continue reading → 0

Celsiheit is back – but help is at hand

Metric Views - Fri, 04/10/2015 - 00:28
Just when we thought we had seen the last of Fahrenheit temperatures, a tabloid headline warns us against complacency and reminds us of those awkward conversions. Awkward no more, we are pleased to say, as Metric Views has learnt of … Continue reading → 0

A problem with symbols

Metric Views - Thu, 04/02/2015 - 00:39
A quest by one of our readers for a new washing machine has prompted a look at Britain’s confused approach to the use of symbols. In Britain, there are many activities where the use of symbols is taken for granted. … Continue reading → 4

Break of railway gauge proposed

Metric Views - Wed, 04/01/2015 - 00:08
The UK Department for Transport is proposing that a break in railway gauge should be introduced at the UK-French border. Britain’s main line railways will adopt the Irish track gauge of 1600 mm (5’– 3”). Following controversy earlier this year … Continue reading → 7

A skirmish across the Pond

Metric Views - Fri, 03/27/2015 - 00:37
Readers may be interested in a recent exchange of views between Clay Rogers, a journalist with a newspaper in Iowa, and Paul Trusten, Vice President of UKMA’s sister organisation in the USA. From 3 March 1969, it became illegal in … Continue reading → 0

Signs of the times

Metric Views - Fri, 03/20/2015 - 00:32
We compare the Government’s different approaches to two separate proposals for new road signs. Readers of Metric Views may remember the Government’s rejection of proposals to phase out imperial-only height and width restriction traffic signs.: http://metricviews.org.uk/2012/03/dft-admits-no-basis-for-blocking-metric-signs/ It was estimated that this … Continue reading → 1

Whitworth’s forgotten legacy

Metric Views - Fri, 03/13/2015 - 00:24
Whitworth is famous for the eponymous screw thread, and for his promotion of standard measures and interchangeability that brought about an engineering revolution. Less well known are his enthusiasm for decimal measurement and his opposition to the introduction of the … Continue reading → 0

A Biblical specification and a problem solved (almost)

Metric Views - Fri, 03/06/2015 - 00:33
We are justifiably proud in England of the legal principles laid down in Magna Carta in 1215, but less supportive of its command, “Let there be one measure …”. However, weights and measures laws are as old as civilisation. In … Continue reading → 0

Imperial in 2015

Metric Views - Fri, 02/27/2015 - 00:24
It is almost 50 years since the announcement in Parliament that the UK would be ‘going metric’, and 15 years since significant progress last occurred. Although most Imperial units have passed into history, a few have survived in common use. … Continue reading → 0

Inside the Commons

Metric Views - Fri, 02/13/2015 - 00:26
Have you been watching this series on BBC2 on Tuesdays at 9.00 pm? Two programmes have already been broadcast, with one to go. They show the workings of the House of Commons and there are a few surprises, or perhaps … Continue reading → 0
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