My name is David King and I live in Edenbridge, Kent, an easy reference, is that I am some 8 kms due south of the infamous Clackets Lane Service Centre on the southern section of the M25 between junctions 5 and 6, just below the escarpment of the North Downs, at a height of 45 metres.
I am not a trained scientist, nor am I academically qualified, I am an Associate Fellow of the RmetS and also a member of the Climatologists Observers league (COL), the foremost amateur climatologist organisation in the UK, and am an active member of both organisations and have been for several years. A keen amateur is a good description.
In connection with these memberships I submit data on a regular basis to these bodies collected from an established Stephenson Screen collection unit in my back garden. This screen contains maximum sheathed thermometer, sheathed minimum thermometer, standard thermometer, Tinytag 2 recorder, Tinytag TH-2500 recorder, wet & dry thermometer, air pressure recorders, all these instruments are calibrated and certified annually. Additionally I have a Davis VP2 automatic weather station providing all the data that these stations are capable of and finally two sun recorders on the roof of the house. Therefore two independent systems and as such I am well versed in the parameters for recording and reporting officially such data.
I was for over 25 years a police constable in the Metropolitan Police serving in the inner London boroughs of south London, always on the street as a front line policeman. I started this profession before the days of radios, support squads, even before the Noddy bikes and Panda cars. I was trained by Second World War servicemen who were knowledgeable, and learnt much from these teachers. You learned to earn respect by respecting people. So, whilst I did not have an academic education as such, I came up through the equally hard and instructive University of Life working the streets of inner south London. I have the cap, the T shirt and the Video, and I know much of human life and as far as this web-site is concerned, it started my interest in weather.
If you went out walking the beat and did not appreciate the weather conditions you got wet and cold if you did not take your top coat or rainwear, therefore you learnt to read the sky, clouds and weather warnings. As my interest in weather gained, I was encouraged by an ex RAF flight engineer who flew with Bombers in WWII to learn about the stars, moon and skies, and became very proficient with this patient instruction at celestial navigation.
In due course I moved from inner London to outer London on the Kent and Surrey borders where I learnt from other older policeman how to read plants, birds, animals and other informative country matters. Indeed a rude awakening to rural policing.
I have been reading these country signs now since 1958 and with greater detail since 1966, making notes all the time. So, I have a fair knowledge of how to read country signs and how to interpret such signs.