Colchester Swimming Club

Making licensed competitions possible
Training British Swimming Officials
Colchester Swimming Club has a long and successful competition history made possible by the amazing people who voluntarily train to become British Swimming Officials and the many volunteers within our Club.

To maintain common standards in the education and training of all swimming officials, England, Scotland and Wales use WORLD AQUATICS Technical Rules. As such, trained officials are listed as British Swimming Officials.

As a Club we are constantly arranging and facilitating training sessions for our officials. Should you like to join our team of officials, then please speak with our very own Swimming Competition Promoter and Referee Helen Stephens about our upcoming training courses.

We look forward to having you on our team!

Our Competition Promoter

British Referee
Helen Stephens

Types of Swimming Officials
Everything you need to know

This course is for club members and volunteers who want to help their club deliver events, by becoming a timekeeper.

By becoming a timekeeper and supporting this exciting new virtual event, you will get a glimpse into the vital world of officiating. The course covers what being a timekeeper is all about through an interactive e-learning which will take you between 60 and 90 minutes to complete, followed by a practical timekeeping session. This can be completed at an event.

General Course Info

Who is the course designed for?

To become a timekeeper you need to be at least 14 years of age and a registered member of a Swim England affiliated club or member of the Institute of Swimming.

Once you have completed the online learning you will need to download your e-certificate and contact Helen Stephens, club secretary and referee, who will help arrange your practical session.

Swimming Technical Official

Everything you need to know

The Course


This online learning is the first step to achieving Judge 1 status for swimming technical officiating. It is accessible to anyone who wants to understand the FINA rules relating to swimming and the process of being a Judge Swimming Official and Time Keeper.

Training format

  • E-learning - approx. 6-8 hours
  • You can start this online course as soon as you are booked on and it can be accessed multiple times before completion.

Course Content

This online learning covers the theory element only and needs to be completed prior to taking the practical poolside assessments.


The Judge Level 1 online learning is designed to help you to understand the roles of a:

  • Timekeeper
  • Chief timekeeper
  • Inspector of turns
  • Chief inspector of turns

You will also be introduced to the relevant FINA rules along with video footage which will help you to interpret how those FINA rules are applied in practice.

Following the completion of the online learning, you will need to upload your certificate to your home nations platform. Once this is completed you will be sent your training logbook and further details for your practical assessment. At this point, please make contact with your Officials Coordinator to identify your next steps.

Access to local support is available on request, with a dedicated email address (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) to provide ongoing additional support as we seek to grow our number of qualified officials.

Once your theory training is complete and registered, you will be provided with local contacts to guide you through your practical assessments. The suggested timescales for completing each competence is 11 months. This does not apply whilst Covid-19 restrictions are in place.

Upon completion of all Judge 1 training you will automatically be issued with your first licence, which will be valid for 4 years, which then enable you to apply to volunteer at all events up to and including National level.
Swimming Technical Official

Everything you need to know

This is the second level of qualification. It encompasses the role and duties in relation to all aspects of judging and the theoretical role and duties of Starter.

The minimum age to start training is 16 years and candidates must a have already qualified as Judge Level 1. The training is made up of formal instruction mentored pool side training with a workbook, followed by a practical assessment.

When qualified, candidates will be attributed with the qualification Judge Level 2 on the British Swimming Database.

There is a further module to be completed to qualify as a Starter.

Swimming Technical Official
JUDGE - LEVEL 2S - Starter

Everything you need to know

Candidates wishing to qualify as a Starter will be required hold the Judge Level 2 qualification and have completed a minimum of 20 hours post qualification experience as Judge Level 2.

Training will consist of a prescribed number of practical experiences as a Starter before undertaking a formal practical assessment.

Successful candidates will be attributed with the Starter qualification: Judge Level 2.

Swimming Technical Official

Everything you need to know

The minimum age for training is 19 years providing the candidate is aged 20 years as at 30 November in the year of the theory examination.

This course contains theoretical instruction and specified practical experiences. It is followed by a formal examination in November after which successful candidates take a final poolside practical assessment leading to qualification as a British Swimming Referee.

Several months, approximately 9 to 10, have been allocated between registration and the formal examination the following year to enable candidates to undertake all the practical experience required to complete the course as well as the theoretical instruction.

The new pre-requisites and application process for Referee training are available here: British Swimming Referee Training Process. Please ensure that you have familiarised yourself with them before applying for training.

Would you like to get involved?

If you would like to get involved please contact our Chief Coach or Competition Promoter using our online Contact Form?