I explained in a previous article how The Length of the Fasting Day of Ramadan is not simply a fixed formula from the dawn to sunset. This method is perfectly suitable for most places, but it starts producing impractical or even meaningless results for northern locations with high latitudes. In extreme cases, the fasting day could be over 22 hours or less than 2 hours long, depending on the time of the year!
It is critical to understand the principle of any Islamic ruling to know how it may change in different circumstances. Naturally, this also applies to the question of when to start the fasting day and when to end it. I then explained in my article on Fasting Ramadan when the Day is Extremely Long or Short and the Moderation of Islam how Muslim scholars have acknowledged the importance of understanding the flexibility of Islamic law and applied it to this specific case. Personal reasoning or “ijtihād” should be applied to design a method for calculating a reasonable length for the fasting day. One method that has been proposed by scholars is to make the length of the fasting day as in Mecca or Medina where the Qur’an was revealed. There, the fasting lasts between around twelve hours in January to about fifteen in June.
I then discussed in a third article a method for Calculating the Ramadan Timetable in High Latitude Cities Using Mecca’s Length of the Fast. In this case, the Muslim fasts for the length of the fasting day in Mecca. I also presented the calculations for Ramadan 2013 Birmingham, UK, using this method, as an example. I have prepared the Ramadan 2014 timetable for Birmingham, UK, which can be downloaded from here. This table include the detailed calculations as discussed in the previous article. As an example of the calculations, on Sunday 29th/June the length of the fasting day in Mecca is 14 hours 53 minutes. If someone in Birmingham would like to start the fast at dawn, that is 03:17 (CDawn), then they can break their fast at 18:10 (CEnd). If the person would rather break their fast at local sunset, which is at 21:35 (CSunset), then they can start the fast at 06:42 (CStart).