I've never made a secret of my dislike of metric measurements. For me, our system of weights and measures are more human and indelibly linked with our culture - give the metric supporters an inch and they'll take the lot. If we don't protect our systems then the metric zealots will go the whole nine yards and before you know it they'll be trying to stuff a quart into a pint pot.
Get the idea?
Our imperial system isn't just a way of measuring - it's embedded in our culture. From Shakespeare's pound of flesh in The Merchant of Venice to the size of football goalposts (8 feet high by 8 yards wide in case you didn't know -even in Europe). When something becomes such an integral part of the language and culture of a nation like that then it is worth protecting.
I felt the same way about our currency. These days we have the pound and the pence. That's it. There is nothing else, but not that long ago we had the shilling, bob, crown, half-crown, tanner, thrupenny bit, tuppenny bit, hapenny, farthing, penny, pound, florin, two bob-bit and guinea. Ok, we still have the guinea, but it's not in common usage anymore unless you're buying a racehorse. The loss of those terms which were part of our everyday language has demeaned our culture. Once upon a time we would say something like "I don't care tuppence". Nowadays, it would more likely be "I don't give a fuck".
That is one of the advantages of our system - it's descriptive capability - which metric just does not have.
So I have found it encouraging over the last few weeks that I seem to have noticed a growing tendency for the media to use our system of measurements more and more - particularly in respect to the recent floods and rainfall.
I think a lot of this is driven by us - the public - as reporters talking to normal people affected by the floods found they all use the traditional system when asked what happened. Almost invariably, when asked, the public responded with comments about a "few inches" or "a couple of feet" - and this seems to have relayed itself back to our media who have also started to mention rainfall, once more, in terms of inches rather than meaningless centimetres or millimetres.
The imperial system is more human. If someone says that we're in for an inch or two of snow - we instantly know in our minds what that looks like. If someone says we're in for 20-40 mm it is less obvious. If we're told to look out for a criminal who is five feet four and weighs 15 stone - we know to look out for a short fat bloke - if we're told he's 165cm and weighs 95kg then most of us wouldn't have a clue.
Now, if we can only start getting some of our old currency terms back again .......