Imperial Measurements to Return

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Standard Measurements at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich © David Gill

It has been announced today that, as part of the preparation for Brexit, the UK will be jettisoning metric measurements and returning to the ‘Imperial’ measurements of inches, feet and yards. This adventurous initiative has been put in place to ensure that UK citizens have a unique British perspective on distance and location.

This move is likely to prove a challenge to those under 60 who have been brought up on millimetres, metres and kilometres. However older citizens may feel reassurance from this reintroduction. It also needs to be remembered that the UK continues to measure longer distances in miles and speeds in miles per hour. It is hoped that the move will standardise the units of measurement.

It is unclear if petrol stations will be required to sell fuel in gallons rather than litres, or that car dealerships will need to show fuel consumption in miles per gallon (as opposed to kilometres per litre).

One of the additional benefits of this change is the likely improvement in mental numeracy as calculators on phones and tablets will not readily convert to and from a non-metric system.

A short ceremony to anticipate the forthcoming legislation will be conducted by the Greenwich meridian line with the slogan, “Now is the time to put feet back”.

The necessary process will not be contained within the Great Repeal Bill, though it is understood that a series of possible names are under active consideration, among them the Large Yard Bill.

Tattershall Castle

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Tattershall Castle © David Gill

Tattershall Castle in Lincolnshire is in the care of the National Trust. The present brick tower was constructed by Ralph Cromwell, Third Baron Cromwell, in 1434; it was completed in 1446. It has six levels, and from the very top there are clear views over Lincolnshire.

The castle was purchased by Lord Curzon of Kedleston, the former viceroy of India, in 1911 and subsequently given to the National Trust. The castle had faced demolition and the removal of its architectural features for export to the USA after it had been sold in 1910; the case had been a spur to (Sir) Charles Peers in his preparion of the Ancient Monuments Act (1913).

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View from Tattershall Castle © David Gill
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