Swimming returns to Nationals for 2024!

Please find the event guide below as well as attached here.

Please find the event schedule here.

You can also find the programme of events here.


23 February – 25 February 2024 


Ponds Forge International Sports Centre 

Sheaf Street 


S1 2BP 


The event schedule can be found here.

You can aslo view the programme of events here

Accepted/Draft Entries

Please check the draft entry lists IMMEDIATELY to ensure that everything is as expected for you/your team, these can be accessed here.

Please advise any queries IMMEDIATELY, DO NOT LEAVE UNTIL THE EVENT as changes cannot be made at that point. Athletic Unions should email changes to [email protected].

Note that changes to times/addition of Swim England No etc. will incur a £10 admin charge.

Rejected Entries

Please refer to the BUCS Long Course Swimming webpage for the lists of ‘Rejected Entries’ to check if any entries have been rejected. You can do this by clicking here.

Note that the only entries that have been cut are those that were invalid such as swimmers entering times outside of consideration entry times in that event will have been rejected at point of entry. This is the same for any entries by Para Swimmers in Non-Para Events that are outside of the general consideration times.


Once a swimmer is entered via BUCS Play and is accepted as per the draft entries, it is assumed they are swimming unless a team representative officially withdraws them. 

You must withdraw any swimmers not participating in the entire event or any specific events ASAP.

Withdrawal forms must be used and are available here.

Withdrawal Deadlines are as follows:

For Day 1 Friday 23 February Deadline: 14:00 Thursday 22 February 2024

For Day 2 Saturday 24 February Deadline: 12:00 Friday 23 February 2024

For Day 3 Sunday 25 February Deadline 12:00 Saturday 24 February 2024

Finals - within 30 mins of the published result.

Note: If there is an empty lane due to the no-show of a finalist who has not withdrawn then the non-showing finalists will be fined. If a reserve fails to report and has not withdrawn and is required to swim (resulting in an empty lane) then the reserve swimmer will be fined. 

Competitors failing to withdraw from an event by the given deadlines will be liable to a fine.

Pre-Event & Friday Heat Withdrawals (up to 14:00 Thursday 22 February)

To withdraw swimmers prior to the event a withdrawal form must be completed and emailed to [email protected] with [email protected] CC’d in by 14:00 on Thursday 22 February 2024 by your Athletic Union.

Note that ALL WITHDRAWALS FROM FRIDAY’S HEAT SESSIONS MUST BE MADE BY 14:00 on Thursday 22 February 2024.

At Event Withdrawals – (Post 14:00 Thursday 22 February)

Withdrawals thereafter can only be made at the BUCS Help Desk in person at the event or by phoning 07913419397.



Payment at Event

Late Payment

No Show – Heat



No Show – Final



Late Withdrawal – Heat



Late Withdrawal – Final



Inappropriate Behaviour



Failure to Finish within Consideration Time or Qualifying Time*



*This may be increased to an Inappropriate Behaviour Fine at the discretion of the Meet Director and BUCS staff depending on the severity of the offence and whether proof of achieving the qualifying time in the previous 12 months can be supplied.


Please note you will only be able to request substitute swimmers for other swimmers who become unable to swim their event(s) after the closing date if they are a named swimmer from your accepted submitted entries. Substitutions are only accepted until 17:00 FRIDAY 16  FEBRUARY 2024, after which only medical substitutions are permitted if accompanied by a medical note.

Competition Format

There will be two heat sessions each morning A & B.

50m, 100m & 200m Events - The fastest 3 heats will be swum in the first heat session (A), the remaining heats will be swum in the second heat session (B).

All HDW Events - 400m, 800m & 1500m will have their fastest heat in the finals session the remaining heats will be swum as follows:

  • 800m & 1500m Freestyle– the second & third fastest heats will be swum in the first heat session (A)
  • 400m Events – the second, third and fourth fastest heats will be swum in the first heat session (A) & any further heats will be swum in the remaining heats session (B).

There will be A & B finals for all 50, 100 and 200m Events.
The top 10 swimmers/teams will advance to A finals and the next 10 to the B final.
Guest entrants may not progress to a final.

Relay Declarations

Those students listed as your relay team(s) on BUCS Play at the point of entry are not your declared team, but if you wish to use any other swimmer at the Championships, they MUST have been listed on your entries made on BUCS Play.

Institutions will be provided with the relevant number and types of relay declaration forms for the teams they have entered in the Championships. Once completed, relay declaration forms must be handed in to the staff on the BUCS Help Desk in the Omega Suite and the staff member who receives the form will sign, date, tear-off and return to the team representative a receipt slip of their submission.

Heat Declarations
Relay declaration forms for heats are required to be submitted at least ONE hour before the beginning of the respective session. These declarations will then be automatically carried forward for the finals if a team progresses. 

Final Declarations
You may wish to change your team for the final. To do this you must go to the BUCS Help Desk and request and submit a new declaration form at least ONE hour before the beginning of the respective final’s session and earlier if possible please. Note: If a new team declaration form is not submitted on time for the finals, then the same team and order as the heats must be maintained.

The relay finals do not have to be made up of swimmers who swam in the relay heats. However, please note that no movement is permitted between 1st, 2nd and 3rd relay teams etc. – each set of swimmers must remain in their respective relay team for heats and finals, i.e., if you swim in the 1st team for the heats you cannot swim in the 2nd team for the finals and vice versa. If you are unsure, please ask at the BUCS desk. 

Teams failing to correctly submit a form will not be permitted to participate and teams failing to submit a form detailing the correct order of swimmers will be disqualified from the event.

Registration and Technical Briefing

Each institution must collect a ‘Team Pack’ from the BUCS Help Desk by 07:25 on Friday 23 February 2024. The help desk is open on Thursday 22 February from 18:00 – 20:00 to allow teams arriving the night before to resolve any queries and collect their ‘Team Pack’.

A representative from each institution must attend the Technical Briefing at 07:30 on Friday 23 February 2024 in the Diving Officials Room. This representative will need to ensure they have collected their ‘Team Pack’ prior to the briefing, which includes copies of the Relay Declaration Forms (where applicable) and Heats Withdrawal Forms for their institution. 

Team Seating

This event is operating a clear deck policy and asks all teams to sit upstairs on either side of the pool please. Coaches and Team Managers may work poolside as required.
Team-mates may support in the finals session on poolside but should ensure adequate space is left for marshalling and officials.

Warm Ups

Warm Ups are split as per the schedule.

Ponds Forge has strict warm up restrictions. To comply with these, we have a strict warm up schedule which must be complied with.

Diving Pit - The diving pit will be available for training, warm up and swim down as per the schedule from first thing each morning until post finals.

Para Warm Up Lane – Lane 6, the lane closest to the diving boards in the diving pit, is assigned to para swimmers throughout the event and will be clearly marked. If any non compliance is observed please bring this to the attention of the lifeguard on duty and the Meet Director.

No fins or paddles are permitted in the warmups. They may be permitted in the diving pit at quieter times at the discretion of the lifeguards whose instructions MUST be followed.

Reporting for Finals

Finalists must report to the marshal outside the Diving Officials Room, failure to do so may result in a reserve being permitted to swim.

All finalists (including reserves) are expected to either report for their finals or withdraw (within 30 minutes of the result being published) from the event if they do not wish to participate. 

Reserve finalists: Only 2 reserves per final will be called up should there be withdrawals.
withdrawals/reserves will be updated online. If you have any doubt please at the BUCS Help Desk. All reserve finalists should report to the Finals Marshall at the end of the final session warm up who will advise if they are required to swim or stand them down. 

Final fines: If there is an empty lane due to the no-show of a finalist who has not withdrawn then the non-showing finalists will be fined. If a reserve fails to report and has not withdrawn and is required to swim (resulting in an empty lane) then the reserve swimmer will be fined. 

Awards & Ceremonies

BUCS medals will be awarded to the first 3 individuals/teams in each event from A finals only. Trophies will be awarded to:

Top Overall Institution (calculated using Swimming Event Points)
Top Open and Women’s Teams (calculated using Swimming Events Points)
Top Open and Female Performances (calculated using FINA Points)
Top Open and Female Para-Swimming Performances (calculated using British Para-Swimming Points)

Medal Ceremonies will take place en-bloc in event order immediately after each final’s session.

Universities are expected to send a representative if the medallist is unavailable. Ceremonies will proceed with a min of 2 swimmers but where only 1 swimmer attends this will be at the discretion of the swimmer.

Para Swimming Ceremonies and Deaf Swimming Ceremonies where events meet the criteria will take place immediately after the conclusion of the Finals Sessions on Friday and Saturday and ASAP after the conclusion of the Heats Sessions on Sunday.

All medal and award winners are expected to report immediately to the ceremonies area after the conclusion of the finals and be wearing clothing/team kit when receiving awards (minimum of shorts and t-shirts).

Para-Swimming Entrants

The following list (in line with events currently being swum in Great Britain for Para-Swimmers) are recognised events for para-swimmers, as such, eligible entrants in these events can (subject to competitor numbers) earn BUCS Points, BUCS Medals and Swimming Event Points, as part of multi-classification extracted results using British Para-Swimming Points.


Eligible Classification

50m Freestyle


100m Freestyle


200m Freestyle

S1-S5 & S14

400m Freestyle


50m Backstroke


100m Backstroke

S1, S2 & S6-S14

50m Breaststroke


100m Breaststroke

SB4-SB9, SB11-SB14

50m Butterfly


100m Butterfly


200m Individual Medley


A secondary strobe light will be available for athletes with a hearing impairment.

If you have any specific requirements for competing, E.g., Strobe Lights, use of ‘tappers’ etc. please advise us by emailing [email protected].

Any para-swimmers requiring the use of tapping devices, blackened goggles or starting devices MUST have these signed off at the Technical Briefing at 07:30 on Friday 23 February 2024, for them to be used during the Championships.

BUCS will require proof of classification status from the individual. Swimmers MUST bring evidence with them to the Championships and present it to the Lead Referee if requested. Swimmers can download and print the required information from here:

Swim England/Swim Wales Membership Check
Scottish Swimming (SASA) Membership Check
Welsh Swimming Membership Check
World Para Swimming Rules and Regulations  

This event is World Para Swimming approved. However, in line with World Para Swimming Rules and Regulations (Regulation 10.17) any World Record swims will not be recognised.

Para Swimmer Results (Para Swimming Points)

Swimmers in each recognised event listed above shall have their results ranked based on a multi-classification basis using British Para-swimming Points. The following rules shall apply:

  1. There needs to be 2 or more eligible swimmers that participate in a specific event to constitute a race and for BUCS Points, BUCS Medals or Swimming Event Points to be awarded. The 2 or more swimmers participating do NOT need to be of the same classification.
  2. To be eligible you need to have a confirmed classification for para-swimmers and be in recognised event (as listed above)
  3. To win BUCS Points, a BUCS Medal or Swimming Event Points for your institution you must have beaten a swimmer who also has an eligible classification for that recognised event. For example, if only an S4 and an S7 enter the 50m Backstroke, no points or medals can be awarded. If an S4, an S8 an S9 and an S11 enter the 400m Freestyle, points and medals will be awarded for 1st and 2nd place only as the S4 is ineligible for that discipline. 
  4. In each event, only the fastest para-swimmer from each institution can score Swimming Event Points. Additionally, only up to the fastest 2 para-swimmers from the same institution in each event can win a BUCS Medal or BUCS Points. E.g., if 3 para-swimmers from the same institution finished 1st, 2nd and 3rd, only the top 2 would receive BUCS Medals and Points. Points and medals will be awarded regardless of whether a non-disabled athlete from the same institution is awarded in the equivalent event. 

BUCS Points

BUCS points will be awarded to the top 4 swimmers/teams for eligible events, however, please note that only the top 2 swimmers from each institution, or 1 team per institution for relay events, will be eligible for BUCS points. Therefore, if there are not enough eligible swimmers/teams in the top 4 to earn the points, then the remaining points will be awarded to the next best eligible swimmers/teams based on the rest of the A Final results, B Final results and/or the heat results as required.

In the case of HDW events (400m Individual Medley, 400m Freestyle, 800m Freestyle, 1500m Freestyle), institutions can have more than 2 swimmers entered, but would not be able to achieve more than 2 sets of BUCS Points, and only 1 set of Swimming Event Points.

For BUCS Points awarded to para-athletes please see Appendix 1.

Swimming Event Points (Not BUCS Points)

In each event only the fastest individual/team from each institution will score points.
For clarity, where there is more than one A or B finalist from the same institution only the highest ranked swimmer/team will score points.

Individual Events - Individual events will be scored by 1st place being awarded 20 points, 2nd place 19 points, continuing with a decreasing points scale for subsequent ranked placings in the order of 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12 etc. down to 1 point. Points are awarded to the highest ranked swimmers from each different institution based on their finishing position 1-20. 

EG University A’s 1st ranked swimmer wins and they receive 20 points, University A’s 2nd ranked swimmer finishes 2nd, they receive no points, University B’s 1st ranked swimmer finishes 3rd, they receive 18 points and this process continues until the top 20 places have been considered for points.

Relay Events – Relay events will score double points with 1st place being awarded 40 points, 2nd place 38 points, continuing with a decreasing points scale for subsequent ranked placings in the order of 36, 34, 32, 30, 28, etc. down to 2 points for 20th. Points are awarded based on the highest ranked team from each different institution based on their finishing position 1-20. 

EG University A’s 1st ranked team wins and they receive 40 points, University A’s 2nd ranked team finishes 2nd they receive no points, University B’s 1st ranked team finishes 3rd so they receive 36 points and this process continues until the top 20 places have been considered for points.

Travel, Delays and Emergencies

It has been noted that in previous years teams have experienced difficulties in travelling to Sheffield due to heavy pre-weekend traffic on the roads. Please ensure that your team leaves plenty of time to travel to the venue.

Please note that Sheffield have introduced a Clean Air Zone in the city centre and therefore charges may apply when driving to and around Sheffield over the course of the weekend.

If you are delayed, please contact us to arrange any relay declarations and/or withdrawals by phoning 07913419397.


Spectators are permitted to attend the BUCS Long Course Swimming Championships 2024 however capacity is limited. This is a free to attend event, and tickets are not required. A livestream will be available for all days of competition. This can be accessed via the BUCS YouTube and BUCS Facebook pages.

Rules and Regulations

The Championships are held under the BUCS Swimming Regulations, which stipulate that all Swimming Championships are held under BUCS General Regulations, Swim England Laws, World Aquatics Rules of Swimming and World Para Swimming Rules and Regulations.


Live results will be available from the BUCS Long Course Swimming website over the weekend. Full results will be published after the event.


It is the responsibility of all the competing teams to organise their own accommodation requirements.


Parking is available at ‘Q-Park Castlegate’ Car Park (S1 2BQ) which is less than a 5-minute walk to Ponds Forge. The prices are outlined below, but there is a 2.00m height restriction in this car park to make note of for anyone bringing vans or minibuses to the event. 

1 Hour


2 Hours


3 Hours


5 Hours


8 Hours


10 Hours


12 Hours


24 Hours


If you are bringing a larger vehicle, then you may be interested in a couple of the following car parks that have no height restrictions; Sidney Street (S1 4RG) and Matilda Street (S1 4QW), both of which are about a 10-15 minute walk to Ponds Forge.

Food & Drink

There is an on-site café at Ponds Forge which is open at 08:30-19:00 which serves hot and cold food, drinks and snacks. There are also a wide range of local shops and café’s available within a 10 minute walk of the venue.

Media Accreditation

Photographers, videographers and press are allowed to attend BUCS Long Course Swimming Championships and must complete our Nationals Media Accreditation form if you wish to take photos or video at this event. Sign-up will close on Tuesday 20 February and WILL NOT open again, this means there will be no sign-up on the day so please ensure you have signed up beforehand.

Event Partners

BUCS are delighted to announce three supporting partners for Nationals 2024; 

  • New Balance – shop the look and grab your Nationals merchandise online here or at the event 
  • AmeriCamp – offering the opportunity to coach your sport at summer camp in the USA for $2000 
  • Milk Every Moment – campaign showcasing the nutritional value of milk for sport students 

As BUCS’ kit provider, New Balance are giving you as BUCS athletes the chance to access a range of bespoke and personalised Nationals 2024 kit. To purchase this new range, please head to the online shop here or to the merchandise stands based at EIS, Ponds Forge and the Canon Medical Arena during the event.  

AmeriCamp are offering BUCS athletes the summer of a lifetime, providing you with the opportunity to earn a minimum of $2000 working at a summer camp in the USA, using the skills and experiences gained from your sporting background. For the exclusive offer of £50 off your program fees, use the code BUCS50 when securing your place, as well as a placement guarantee as a BUCS athlete. To find out more, please head to the AmeriCamp stands at EIS and Ponds Forge, or head to americamp.co.uk/bucs

Milk Every Moment is a new campaign showcasing milk, the timeless classic in your fridge, it is more than just a beverage, it's a nutritional powerhouse. Loaded with essential nutrients, it's a top-notch source of high-quality protein, all you need to build and repair muscles after a workout. Whether you're gearing up for BUCS Nationals or looking to recover post event, that a look at the website for more information and useful recipes.  

All partners are excited to be here supporting you as you take on a thrilling weekend of sport and competition. You can find them located across EIS, the Canon Medical Arena and Ponds Forge, as shown below, where they'll be offering the opportunity to win some exclusive giveaways and to find out more about what they have to offer.  

Friday 23rd February 2024 




Canon Medical Arena 

New Balance 

10:00 – 17:00 


09:30– 17:00 


10:00 – 17:00 

10:00 – 18:00 



10:00 – 19:00 



Saturday 24th February 2024 

New Balance 

10:00 – 17:00 

09:00 – 18:00 



10:00 – 17:00 

09:00 – 18:00  



09:00 – 17:00 



Sunday 25th February 2024 

New Balance 

10:00 – 17:00 

09:00 – 17:00 



10:00 – 17:00 

09:00 – 17:00 



09:00 – 17:00 




You can also find further information about our partners on the official event webpage. 

Milk Every Moment

Get ready for the event!

To prepare you for the upcoming event, we wanted to share how milk can aid your sporting performance and training.

Take a look at www.milkeverymoment.co.uk for recipes and nutritional information.


The sustainability of our event matters to us and these are the positive steps we are taking to manage our environmental impact: 

  • All staff and volunteers are encouraged to travel to the event via public transport 
  • We have used local suppliers where possible 
  • Event programmes are all online, minimising paper use 
  • We will print on demand merchandise

How can you help at this event? Here’s some ideas:  

  • Be self-sufficient by using refillable bottles and coffee cups to reduce waste 
  • Travel smarter – as a team on a minibus, cycle or use public transport 
  • Go paperless - use your phone for all event information