The Six Pips Chronicles

Every week at 8:15 PM we send out an email; five images and a little text to keep you in the loop. If you would like to sign-up to receive the Six Pips bulletin please click here – Schofield news bulletin sign-up. The content of these pages contain an archive of observations and forecasts, watchmaking, British commentary, Sussex beauty, manufacture, engineering, design, poetry and amusement. Schofield executes all it does by thinking and the Six Pips is no exception. We are proud to be a very British watch company.

Why The Six Pips?

The Greenwich Time Signal (GTS), popularly known as the pips, is a series of six short tones broadcast at one-second intervals by many BBC Radio stations.

The proposal for a time signal came from one Frank Hope-Jones in a radio talk in April 1923. It was agreed that broadcasting the Greenwich Standard Time with a chronometer at the Royal Observatory tripping a switch at five seconds to the hour to create those iconic pips – using a 1kHz oscillator. The time signal was first broadcast at 9.30 p.m. on 5 February 1924.

There are six pips (short beeps) in total, which occur on the 5 seconds leading up to the hour and on the hour itself. Each pip is a 1 kHz tone (about halfway between musical B5 and C6) the first five of which last a tenth of a second each, while the final pip lasts half a second. The actual moment when the hour changes – the “on-time marker” – is at the very beginning of the last pip.

Our weekly bulletin is made up of five short posts and a snippets section outlining minor news.

  • MR P Competition entry

    Snippets! 246

    • Watch Wallets are running low so, if you are on the fence then please act now!
    • The Compeller is available, email us for info.
    • Schofield made Toots! Original Jazz Coffee is always on hand, it is a better brew than you would expect from a watch company – worth a try.
    • Schofield adds Pinterest to the gamut of our social media.
    • If you are yet to visit the new website then do it now, it took months and is awesome!
    • The pic from Mr P was a submission to the recent competition, a terrific image!
  • South Gare Lighthouse Schofield winner


    Mr H took this photo of South Gare lighthouse, North Yorkshire, and a deserved win it is. Both Mandy and I agree that the photo is quite brilliant. The fact that the lighthouse is the most luminescent object in the composition even though the lamp is off. The word Danger nearly matches it in brightness dividing the image into 5 horizontal tonal stripes. Choosing black and white removes the distraction of colour emphasising the forbidding and portentous presence of the lighthouse. Often black and white photography feels like a sad omission of colour but not in this case. The whole environment is hostile; the peeling harbour arm, the unrefined railings and the rusty skin of the tower. It is a beacon but not a haven. Are the lighthouse and the word Danger working in unison or against each other? The perfect graduation of greys and the off-centre position make this photo our winner. Congratulations Mr H!
  • Schofield Drone Photograph


    If I had a drone I could take an amazing photo. You could I don’t doubt it, the very nature of being in an unusual position gives you an advantage over the ubiquitous head height photograph. But let’s consider this image in a little more detail; the composition is stunning, we asked for man-made coastal structure and we get a whole load of man-made stuff and plenty of coast. What stands out to me are the incredible textures and colours. The beach, grass, bushes, rocks and weeds make for a rug that would suit Schofield HQ. A worthy image that missed it by a bee’s leg. Sorry Mr S.
  • Clevedon Pier in Pastels


    A very beautiful photograph, technically perfect, stunning colours, clever golden-hour reflections, fantastic smoothness of gradients and interesting composition of eighths. Well done Mr B, you excelled! But for us it comes down to taste and sadly there can be only one winner. We cannot help veer towards the peeling rust.
     – I would like to thank everybody that entered. A sterling job all round and so many photos to deliberate over. My sincerest apologies to all those that have not been mentioned openly here but trust that every photo has been discussed in detail and many of you have been so very close. –
  • Schofield Daymark and other watch accessories


    In light of the closing of our competition we would be remiss not to post a pic of the prize, honestly we are not rubbing noses in it just continuing the celebration!  The Daymark sits atop the customer only Strap Kit, containing all your straps for land and sea!
  • Schofield travel goods our leather wallet


    Summer traveling – how we can help – The Travel/Watch Wallet. You may wonder why we have never quite settled on a name for it, is it the Travel Wallet or is it a Watch Wallet? Well in my honest opinion I think it is a Travel Wallet that will happily house a watch, perhaps two but not three. It is suited to items with less on the Z axis than on the X and Y. Passport, monies, notepad, key, watch and pen. For me personally I use it every time I fly, it has become a trusty vault for my passport, money, parking ticket, small pad, (Schofield) pen and my watch temporarily either inside or on top as I go through the Beeps. This wallet will be with you for life.
  • Wedged Pebble on Lancing beach

    SNIPPETS! 245

    • The Markers is a range of watches starting with the Daymark. It will have a brother very soon 🙂
    • Remember if you are an owner of a Schofield watch then you and only you can buy the Strap Kit
    • If you see a strap in any of our media you don’t recognise then take a screen grab and we will identify it for you
    • Schofield made Toots! Original Jazz Coffee is always on hand, it is a better brew than you would expect from a watch company – worth a try
    • Schofield adds Pinterest to the gamut of our social media
    • If you are yet to visit the new website then do it now, it took months and is awesome!
    • The pic is of a wedged pebble in the man-made sea defences of Lancing by Sea