This blog represents my views and opinions. They are not necessarily those of any other member of my Chambers, none of whom contribute to the blog, or assist me with it.


Now moved to http://pupillageandhowtogetit.wordpress.com/ for reasons of convenience and ease. Come and see.

Tuesday, 31 July 2007


Not that a look left is supposed to make you nervous or anything. Besides, if you aren't nervous by now then you should check your vital signs.

Good luck all of you and I hope that things go the way you want. Please let me know.

If shit happens, please don't despair. Be cross, kick the cat, open a bottle of something, drink it, go to sleep - and then wake up, look out of the window and start planning. Trust me on this - there truly are more important things than your job. And please let me know.

For what it is worth - which I accept may not be much - this blog is thinking of you.


wayne jaggernauth said...

I didn't know where to leave this comment, but here goes.

It occured to me that ALL pupillages are supposed to be advertised on www.pupillages.com. However, some chambers and organizations (eg GLS) have offered pupillages this year but have not advertised on the pupillages website.

Granted, if one is interested in a particular set, then s/he has a duty to check the chambers' website. However, chambers and organizations should be penalized for not advertising on the pupillage website (for example being required to place the ad and extend the deadline for applications).

Debs said...

Thanks, Simon. I didn't get the Park Court pupillage, but I did get another one in Leeds. Problem is I don't really like this other chambers all that much, and I'm about to start the BVC so I'm inclined to turn it down and do another round of applications next year (seen as I only did 3 applications this year and got second rounds at all of them). But I'm worried that might be a really stupid thing to do! So I'm asking everyone I know for advice, and I'll mull it over for a few days. And I'll definitely call Simon Philipps for some feedback!

Sherry said...

Wayne, the BSB page on advertising pupillages says:
"Pupillage Advertising Requirements

All pupillage providers must advertise all pupillage vacancies on the designated website www.pupillages.com. The vacancies are divided into two types: OLPas and non-OLPas. For further information regarding pupillage applications, please visit www.pupillages.com.

The Pupillage Funding & Advertising Panel of the Qualifications Committee has the authority to allow exceptions, which must be applied for on the relevant application form and which are decided on a case-by-case basis."

Maybe the organisations/chambers you speak of have applied for and been granted exceptional status?

Troubled barrister said...



Do you have an e-mail address? I think I am reasonably well placed to give you advice but not a good idea to post about the merits of chambers.


Debs said...

Yes, I thought that too. I'm at debs.smithies@gmail.com, all advice at this stage very much appreciated!

wayne jaggernauth said...

Thanks Sherry... that does clear up a lot.

Wig and Gown said...

I had the awful task of entering the offers and rejections this year. I actually felt an terrible knot in my stomach as I rejected people who came so close.

Good luck to you all. It takes me back to 2002 when I sat up and waited to see if I had any offers. It's still a source of humour in chambers that I accepted within 90 seconds of the clock striking midnight.

Simon - I am about to apply to join the E&T committee of the BSB so we may meet sometime soon.

Anonymous said...

wig and Gown - is it typical for chambers to have sent out their offers and rejections by midnight yesterday? I had a message offering pupillage waiting for me this morning from one set, but haven't heard from my top choice yet.

Is it worth holding out before accepting the first offer I've received?


Anonymous said...

Last year I didn't recieve my offer from my 1st choice chambers until August 18th! I rang them on the 17th and told them I had another offer and they told me I was 3rd reserve. Strangely they offered me the pupillage the following day.

I think its worth ringing your first choice to check if you're on a reserve list, and personally I would let them know you have another offer, it might swing it if you show you're in demand.

Anonymous said...

Thanks anonymous - I've done just that. It appears that I'm fairly high up the reserve list so I may sit tight for the moment. I've told them that they are my first choice and that I have another offer so we'll see what happens.

It would be lovely to be in the position of actually having a choice - but really I'm very pleased indeed with the offer I've already received so no complaints.

Big congratulations to all those who've had good news today!!

Many thanks Simon for your superb blog and for devoting such time and effort to helping us obtain pupillage. I do think that this is a very special thing about the bar - whereas other professionals pull up the ladder behind them - I feel that I have had a phenomenal amount of support and sound advice from my Inn and the likes of your good self.

I shall leave it there. I’m in danger of coming over all pollyanna-ish, which is wholly incompatible with my carefully nurtured air of cynicism. Before long I'll be admitting that I’m actually *enjoying* the BVC if I don't get a grip.


Michael said...

Simon, thank you very much for providing such a valuable resource. I have enjoyed using it very much and it clearly did me no harm as I got some good news this morning.


Wig and Gown said...

The Silk who chairs our pupillage committee rang the two successful candidates and all four reserves this morning.

As one of the 'top division' criminal sets in London, we take the view that our top 3 or 4 will probably be offered a place elsewhere as well as us, therefore we need to get in early and make them feel wanted.

We also pride ourselves on our admin and business structure so it follows that our top choices knew their fate at 23.59!

Other sets are far more lax, in part, because some haven't completed their interview process.