Nick is a double Olympic medallist swimmer and former World and Commonwealth Champion. Nick has been European Champion on three successive occasions, rewriting the history books in doing so. At different stages in a distinguished career he has set three World, ten European, nine Commonwealth records and seventeen British records. At the Barcelona Olympics he was the only British swimmer to take a medal, adding to his 1988 silver. He has been European Champion on three consecutive occasions.

Nick represented Great Britain for 13 years and is the current National Record Holder for England. Nick received the M.B.E. during the New Years Honours list 1993 for ‘Services to Swimming’ and is a World Masters Champion and Record Holder for 100 and 200 metres breaststroke.

Nick Gillingham must rank as one of the most consistent championship performers British swimming ever produced. Three consecutive European titles, Commonwealth and World Golds combined with Olympic Silver and Bronze in an amazing six-year run from 1988 to 1994, which also saw him gain numerous other medals and be awarded the MBE. All this marked him out as a great competitor; despite that, Olympic gold sadly eluded him.

Giving back to sport:

After retiring, Nick established a sports communications business focusing on sports marketing, events and development. Since August 2005 he has been Director of Swimming at Tynemouth Amateur Swimming Club, having relocated to the area. Recently, Nick took part in a scheme called Young Ambassadors, promoting youth sport development in Loughborough. Nick recently worked for two years as the Senior Competition Manager for Tyne & Wear developing inter-school competition across 10 School Sport Partnerships. He has his own National Governing Body approved swim academy which remains an integral part of his sports consultancy Sports Communication Group Limited based in the North East of England.

Nick undertakes extensive mentoring work in education as well as the community for the Youth Sport Trust and Creating Excellence. He was recently awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the University of Sunderland for his contribution to sport. Nick is also a School Governor at Swarland First School in Northumberland. He also developed the successful Swim Zone programme, a swimming fitness programme for all ages and abilities, available to the public throughout leisure centres and health clubs throughout the UK.

Competitive record

Olympic Games   

1996       4th                           200m

1992       3rd                           200m

1992       7th, 9th                            100m, Medley Relay

1988       2nd                           200m


Commonwealth Games

1994                 1st, 2nd           200 & 100m

1994                 3rd                  Medley Relay

1990                 2 x 2nd            200 & 100m

1986                 3rd, 9th            200 & 100m


World Championships

2000       3 x Gold                   50, 100 & 200m

1994       4th                           200m

1993       1st, 4th                       200 & 100m

1993       3rd                           Medley Relay

1991       3rd                           200m

1986       18th                         200m


European Championships

2003       2 x 1st                     200 & 100m