As a child, the start of summer was clearly designated: it was when you put your winter woollies away in the loft. (Although that was actually the ‘attic’ – when did I start saying ‘loft’?!) It was when you started wearing your summer uniform to school. These days, I’m usually out of tights and into strappy sandals by the end of May; obviously, this year is the exception! ‘Ne’er caste a clout till May be out’, they say, but Wimbledon has started and I’m still wondering if it would look odd to wear boots at this time of year. So when is it officially summer? In primary school, I’m sure we were taught that spring was March, April and May with June, July and August constituting summer. This was confirmed recently when I discovered that the Met Office also designates 1 June as the start of summer – or perhaps they all went to primary school in the 1950s! But this started me off on another train of thought: how come midsummer’s day is 23 June and what about 21 June as the summer solstice? All I can tell you with any certainty is that we still have the spring/autumn-tog duvet on our bed, supplemented by the eiderdown on some nights.