Why Radcliffe Chambers?
Pupillage is important to us. We see the success of our pupils as essential to chambers’ future success. We only offer as many pupillages as we have vacancies for tenancy, and we only recruit pupils who we believe have the potential to become successful members of Radcliffe Chambers.
We are known for being a welcoming set, and aim to provide challenging and rewarding pupillages in an inclusive and supportive environment. We have grown significantly over the past few years and we are committed to ensuring that all our members share in our success.
We work with leading law firms on complex business, property and private wealth disputes. Our members are recognised as leaders across a wide range of commercial and chancery disciplines, including banking and financial services, commercial contracts, pensions, real estate, restructuring and insolvency, and the full spectrum of private client work.
We have won numerous awards, including Diversity and Inclusion Initiative of the Year at the UK Legal Diversity Awards 2018. Alongside this, winning Chambers of the Year at the Legal Cheek Awards 2019 is one of our most important achievements. We are proud of our pupillage and will work hard to make sure it offers you the best possible start to your career.
As well as developing your legal skills, we think pupillage should equip you with the business skills you need to grow your practice.
This means we make sure our pupils gain good experience in a wide range of commercial and chancery work. Each pupil sits with four different supervisors, and has the opportunity to work with a number of other members.
It also means that, in the second six months of their pupillage, pupils are supported in gaining as much advocacy experience as possible and in undertaking cases of their own. They work with our clerking team to start building their independent practices, while continuing to gain experience through working with their pupil supervisor and other members.
Alongside this, we think that people achieve their full potential in a supportive environment, when they feel that they can be themselves. We are known for being a friendly set – we were rated A* for our social life in the 2019 Legal Cheek Junior Barrister Survey – and we do all we can to involve new pupils in the life of chambers. We work hard too and that is why chambers has seen so much growth over the last few years.
What we offer
We offer up to two 12-month pupillages with an award of £60,000, in addition to any earnings generated in the second six months. We are happy to consider any request for part of the pupillage award to be drawn down during the BPTC year.
We fund all training courses required during pupillage including the advocacy courses, the practice management course and the forensic accounting course. Pupils are also encouraged to take part in the training we organise for members, which in the past has included PR skills and fintech.
During their first two years of practice, new tenants are not required to pay rent for their rooms in Chambers. In their third year they only pay half the rent.
What we look for
We only recruit pupils who we believe have the potential to become successful members of chambers. That means demonstrating:
- Intellect – Being a barrister is intellectually challenging, so make sure your application highlights your academic achievements
- Commerciality – We think a deep understanding of the issues affecting our clients is crucial to providing the best possible service
- Persuasiveness – You must have the potential to become an outstanding advocate, as evidenced through strong public speaking experience
- Credibility – We value personal impact and the ability to build long-lasting, collaborative relationships with clients and within chambers
- Commitment – We are looking for pupils who have strong reasons for applying to Radcliffe Chambers, and for wanting to become a chancery/commercial barrister
That’s it. There is no Radcliffe Chambers type. We believe that to provide the best possible service to our clients, we need a team that embraces a wide variety of perspectives and life experiences.
We are committed to inclusion and diversity, and encourage applications from candidates from all backgrounds, regardless of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, marital status, religion or belief, or disability. You can read more about this commitment in our comprehensive Pupillage Policy Statement here. You can read our reasonable adjustments policy here.
How to apply
PLEASE NOTE THAT APPLICATIONS FOR PUPILLAGE STARTING IN 2021 ARE NOW CLOSED. DETAILS OF OUR APPLICATION PROCESS FOR 2022 WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE AUTUMN.
Applications for pupillage at Radcliffe Chambers close at 12 noon on 3 January 2020, and should be made by CV with a covering letter addressed to our pupillage committee, and submitted via our Rare contextual recruitment portal. You will be asked to complete a short questionnaire from Rare, which will be used to provide us with contextual information about our applicants. More information on Rare’s contextual recruitment system is available here.
Your covering letter should be no longer than two sides of A4 in total and should address the criteria set out under “What we look for”. The members of our pupillage committee individually review and mark each application, based on those criteria, in order to determine our initial shortlist.
Candidates who are successful at this stage will be invited to attend a first round interview, taking place in the week commencing 20 January 2020. We usually interview around 20-25 candidates during the first round.
Second round interviews will take place in the week commencing 3 February 2020, and we aim to inform the successful applicants by close of business on 7 February 2020.
We conduct our recruitment process in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Code of Conduct and the Equality and Diversity Code for the Bar.