The Amateur Athletics Association (of England) Championships or AAAs Championships, were widely considered to be the British Athletics Championships, even though the corporation did not include Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The event was open to all UK athletes and (with the exception of a few years) to overseas athletes as well. The AAAs was founded in 1880, (1922 for women) and incorporated the UK Olympic trials in 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000 and 2004. The 2006 AAAs Championships were the last to be the defacto British Championships, when they were incorporated into the 2006 UK Championships (and trials).
In 1977, a separate event, the UK National Championships was created. The UK Championships was a closed competition limited to British athletes only. The UK Championships incorporated the UK Olympic trials in 1980. The importance of the meeting declined, due to the AAAs Championships remaining the premier domestic event and also because they were usually held in May. In 1993, the event was renamed the British Championships. There was no event in 1994-96. The event was briefly resurrected in 1997 and incorporated the World Championships trials, before being discontinued.
In 1999, the British Athletics Federation was replaced by UK Athletics and since 2006 they have held the UK Championships and trials event, which serves as both the British Championships and selection event for the World Championships and European Championships and incorporated the Olympic trials in 2008 and 2012.