Longplaying 4: David Rooney: Navigating experimental invention, survival and destruction: the Royal Observatory and GMT

Trinity Buoy Wharf, 28 September 2011

Curator and historian David Rooney talked about the long-term experiment of Greenwich Mean Time.

On reaching the corner of Greenwich Park, a quiet suburban district, the police had found, amid a motley debris of trees, bushes and railings, the charred and shattered remains of a man.
Newspaper report, 1894.

Wait till they start on the Greenwich Observatory. London without time will cause them to wake up.
Suffragette conversation, 1913.

David Rooney is currently a curator at the Science Museum and formerly curator of timekeeping at the Royal Observatory, and was involved in the installation of Longplayer listening posts at both museums. He is interested in the roles played by material artefacts in long-term institutional survival strategies, and the ways people can seek to destabilise experiments in normalisation.

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