Galas – Types of Galas and Competitions throughout the Season

Gala Information – Where to find the Necessary Information


How to Enter a Gala

Once an entry has been Submitted

At the Gala – What You Need to Know

Email any Queries to:


Galas are licensed by the ASA as either  a Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 or Level 4 Meet.  All times recorded in a licensed meet will be shown in the National Rankings database (which is open to everyone to see) and are needed to prove a time for entry into a certain Meet. These times can also be found in the Estats section under results. This is particularly important for qualification into Regional or National Events where qualification can only be achieved at certain Levels of Meet e.g. for Regional events only times at Levels 1,2 or 3 Meets are acceptable.
Level  1 and 2 Meets must have a minimum set of qualifying standards. No upper limit time is required. They are aimed the higher level of swimmer such as National and Regional qualifiers and the better County Level swimmers.
Level 3 Meets require Upper limit times and qualifying times and can attract a wide spectrum of swimmers. The qualifying times can vary widely from times which are equivalent to County qualifying times to those which can enable inexperienced swimmers to compete.
Level 4 Meets are intended for either Novice events or Club Championships. Times achieved are eligible for County qualification. 

Meets are either held in a 50m Pool (long course) – all level 1 meets and occasionally level 3 meets – or a 25m Pool (short course) which is relevant to most swimmers below regional standard.
Times achieved in these meets are recorded with a view to reaching one of the following standards, although most swimmers will predominantly focus on improving their personal best times throughout the year.

Qualifying Standards

Middlesex County Championships
The initial standard competitive swimmers seek to achieve. Times achieved at all licensed meets qualify for these championships which are held in a 25m pool. Times are short course (either achieved in a 25m pool or converted from long course times)

Regionals Qualification - London
Held later in the season, these championships take place in a 50m pool and qualifying times are faster than those for the counties. This is the minimum standard for swimmers in the performance squad. Times must be either achieved in a long course pool or converted from short course times.

South Zonal Championships
These championships incorporate swimmers from the London, South West and South East Regions and are again swum in a 50m pool using long course (including converted) times. These have tougher qualifying standards than the Regional Championships

Held towards the end of the season for those reaching the highest standards in the country.

Harrow also sometimes hosts some non licensed meets – i.e. Summer Sprint Meet – in order to give novice swimmers a chance to experience gala conditions. Times cannot however be used to enter other galas

The Milton Keynes Junior League (for swimmers aged 9 – 12) and the National Arena League (for swimmers 9 and over) are Team Competitions in which The Borough of Harrow Swimming Club takes part. Each cycle includes three rounds in a season and these take place in the south east region. Swimmers are selected to take part based on times achieved. Training camps are often set up for swimmers selected for these competitions.

Harrow Galas
Club Championships  – where possible all swimmers should look at entering. There are no qualifying times required.
John Basford  - aimed at swimmers who did not achieve county standard
Xmas Cracker Meet - level 3 meet accepting most swimmers  - Harrow swimmers have priority entry
End of Season Meet - level 3 meet accepting most swimmers – Harrow swimmers have priority entry


The swimmer’s coach should be identifying which galas your child should be targeting and may identify which events they should swim. If you don’t know which galas or events to enter, please ask the coach, or go through the squad rep if necessary.

Once you have identified which gala to enter - Entry is via the website and can be found as follows using the Competitions Tab.

Click on Meets which brings up a listing of current meets – ones recently completed and those coming up.
For each meet click on the appropriate link for the information required.

Click on the Title to obtain a summary of entry information including address, entry fees  and which events/age categories are taking place.

     Date(s) of the Meet

  Closing Date – Note this may change at short notice so do not delay entry

     Click on Entry Info for full details including qualifying times
 If there is a lower qualifying time – the swimmer must have a time faster than this qualifying time
 If there is an upper qualifying time – the swimmer cannot have a time faster than this qualifying time.
 Sometimes there are lower and upper qualifying times.
 Check if NT (No Time) Entries are allowed. If they are not allowed – the swimmer must have a time.

In order to check a swimmers personal best times – Click on Estats / Swimmers PBs

    Direct link to gala payment online


Click on Estats for the following data

Swimmers PBs   Long course and short course times can be viewed
   These are automatically updated following gala results being logged
   Use these times when checking if a swimmer is eligible for a swimming gala

Meet Entries  When an entry has been submitted – check Meet Entries to confirm that this has gone through
   If there is an error with entries, an email will be sent to advise
   However, emails will not be sent out individually to confirm entry.

Note this does not confirm that the entry has been accepted by the gala organiser, just confirms that the entry has been submitted to the gala for consideration.

Meet Results  Once results are confirmed, these can be found here per gala

If any details are not accurate, please advise competition secretary on



A gala online account needs to be opened in order to enter and pay for galas online
In order to create an account you need to go to the online payment section of the website

When entering galas – ensure that the correct events are being entered (check qualifying times)

Note that entries can be made individually per event or click on two or more distances at once

Check the Product Description for any entry details including discounts if available

Paper Entry

Paper entries can be submitted using the entry form – this can be found in the Entry Info Section
Submit paper entries to the competition secretary prior to the deadline


Check Meet Entries to ensure that your entry has been logged by the competition secretary
These entries will be submitted to the gala organiser unless you are advised otherwise

Once a deadline has closed and entries are submitted to the gala organiser – a list of these entries can be found in the meets section

The gala organiser will advise the competition secretary of accepted / rejected entries as soon as possible

Confirmed entries will be posted on the website once known

Emails will be sent to any competitor who has rejected entries
Refunds will be made via credit on online gala accounts

Prior to the gala, an email will be sent out via the website to advise of warm up/session times and other important information including which coach will be attending the meet

It is however important to take responsibility for checking the website for that particular gala to avoid missing any last minute information. Harrow Swimming Club takes no responsibility for swimmers missing races or sessions.

Important information you need to ensure you know prior to the Gala

• Warm Up / Session Start Times

• Coach / Team Manager – contact details so they can be advised if a swimmer cannot attend or is delayed

• Withdrawal procedure

• Is  there is a signing in procedure – if so – what time is the deadline for signing in/posting cards (Barnet meets)

Results from the Gala will be logged onto our database as soon as possible

These can be found in

 Estats Meet Results

 Meets Page on Website


Times are also sent to the ASA Rankings and posted onto the Rankings Database

AT THE GALA – What You Need to Know!

In advance of the gala, check the Warm Up times, Session times and any deadline for signing in.
Swimmers should be poolside ready for the warm up at least 15 minutes prior to the start of the warm up.
Do not be late! If you will be delayed, advise the coach allocated to this meet.
Swimmers can usually go straight in to the changing rooms – only parents and other spectators need to queue and pay.
If wishing to take photos/videos poolside, ensure that the permission document has been signed.

Parking can often be a problem due to the pressure on spaces, especially if you are arriving for a later session. Allow time for parking delays if you are unfamiliar with the venue.

All Borough of Harrow Swimmers should be wearing club kit poolside and, where directed, on the way to/from the gala.
Swimmers need enough towels, dry change of clothing, especially during a 2 or 3 session gala as the day can be long!
There are sometimes lockers available in the changing rooms where spare clothing/wet items can be stored - £1 or 20p coins may be needed for these.
Swimmers should have footwear (eg flip-flops) on poolside as they won’t be allowed to go into the public areas barefoot.

Food can often be purchased at the venue but this is not guaranteed and where possible, ensure the swimmers have sufficient snacks, drinks and meals (eg pasta, sandwiches etc if the gala stretches over more than one session).
Sweets should be only provided for after the gala!

Poolside Personnel
There will always be at least one coach at the gala. In some cases there will also be a team manager.
Report to the coach/team manager on arrival poolside
Do not leave the pool area without telling the coach (or Team Manager if there is one). This is especially important to ensure that swimmers do not miss races. Parents should not ask children to leave poolside during the swim sessions.
Inform the coach if the swimmer needs to withdraw from any (or all) races, and ensure the withdrawal procedure is followed.
Swimmers should report back to the coach at the end of their race for feedback

As a representative of the Borough of Harrow Swimming Club, swimmers behaviour should be of the highest standard at all times.
Harrow swimmers sit together poolside. Stay in this area when not swimming.
Cheer your team mates if possible during their races.
There is often a swim down pool available. Ensure this is used as directed – it is not a play area.

Medals can often be collected on the day. Results are posted on the wall - or there is an awards desk – check these when possible and collect your medal.
If a swimmer is unable to collect a medal due to leaving early, ask someone to get it on their behalf if possible. It is often not possible to collect medals following the end of the gala, and this can be a great disappointment!

See the Frequently Asked Questions on the website for further information -