The safety and health of all involved in the Championships remains the primary objective and to ensure this we are continually looking at the format, size and scale of the meet in the context of UK Government and Public Health England guidelines.
As planning progresses we will continue to be informed by key UK Government announcements, and with an announcement relating to current lockdown measures and restrictions due week commencing 22nd February we have opted to push back the opening of the event entry system from 16th February until the 2nd March. This is to enable the implications of the announcement to be included within our event planning process. At this stage we will also published a revised set of Event Conditions.
Event update 22/01/21
The COVID pandemic has had, and continues to have a significant impact on all of our lives, and on our sport. As we continue to proceed with optimistic plans for a 2021 British Championships, we are acutely aware that the ability to train and compete is not a priority for many at the current time, and for others not a possibility with current lockdown measures in place.
The event conditions already published at the end of 2020 will therefore be reviewed on a regular basis as we get closer to the proposed Championships and understand more fully the impact of Government and Public Health England guidelines on the size and scale of the meet. The safety and health of all involved in the Championships is of course the primary objective and to ensure this we may need to limit accepted entries across the meet and balance out numbers in each of the two daily heats sessions if there are event capacity restrictions in place.
Despite these challenging times however, we are keen to stay positive about a return to competitive swimming when it is safe to do so and in response to demand are publishing the 2021 British Championships qualifying times to complement the Event conditions already published.
As with many other sports, there has been very little competition for a sustained period now that has necessitated a change to our approach in setting qualifying times for what we hope will be a return to competition for as many as possible on 14th April. Some of the key principles in setting the times are:
- A longer qualifying period – we have extended the qualifying window back to 1st March 2019 in acknowledgement that many swimmers will not have had an opportunity to race in 2020
- More inclusive senior qualifying times – we have taken stock of the very limited number of long course competitive opportunities that have taken place over the course of the last 12 months and that the British Championships could be one of the first domestic competitions to take place since COVID related restrictions were introduced
- Introduction of junior qualifying times – we are including specific qualifying times for junior age athletes which have been benchmarked on performances in the last full competitive season, 2019-20
We hope the above provides some useful information and context for your planning at the current time.
Please look under the coaches tab on the British Swimming Championships 2021 page to ensure you are viewing the latest version of event documentation.