Drystone Opportunities

Pupillage

Drystone Chambers offers up to two 12 month pupillage place via the pupillage gateway process.

Why Drystone Chambers?

Our focus is on providing fearless top quality advocacy to our clients. To continue doing so we think it imperative that we invest in our pupils and their professional development.

We offer a challenging but supportive environment designed to develop a pupil into a tenant and a high proportion of our pupils become tenants.

What to expect

We will allocate you a pupil supervisor in advance of your start date. Throughout your pupillage your pupil supervisor will ensure you receive the support and guidance you need, in addition to members of the pupillage committee who will also support you in pupillage matters or to discuss confidentially any personal matters.

During the first six months of your pupillage you will closely follow your pupillage supervisor, and assist them in research for producing opinions, advices and conferences or seminars. You will accompany them to Court and sit in on client meetings and conferences.

Chambers also runs an in-house training programme aimed at improving both advocacy and research skills.

As a second six month pupil you will be encouraged to appear in Court as often as possible. This is likely to be mainly criminal work but we enjoy a varied caseload, and you will be exposed to more than one area of practise in this period. Typically second-six pupils are in Court every day, so you will soon hone your time management and advocacy skills. You will be exposed to challenging work and a busy case load, which will enable you to develop the skills you need.

If there is an area of practise that you feel more suited to than another, your pupil supervisor will be able to identify and address it in your regular reviews, and where possible put a plan in place to accommodate your wish to spend time in pursuing your chosen area of practise but you will also be expected (as are junior tenants) to assist the clerks in covering work. Chambers is a very large set which covers a wide geographical area and you will be expected to cover work in all of those areas.

The wide geographical spread of Chambers often offers juniors a faster progression through to Crown Court work, but can entail travelling and the costs associated with that. Chambers has catered for this in the pupillage award offered.

Interview Process

Application forms are marked against the following criteria:

• Interpersonal Skills

• Analytical Skill

• Persuasive communicator (verbal)

• Persuasive communicator (written)

• Integrity

• Commitment

Those scoring 80 out of 100 will be invited for a first round interview. We look for excellence, talent and potential. Whilst academic scores are often a guide to that, they are not determinative and we apply the criteria above rather than any criteria based on academic scores.

Depending upon the number of candidates Chambers may operate more than one round of interviews. Interviews usually involve submitting a piece of written work in advance, an oral advocacy exercise and being asked to choose and discuss a current topic.

The interview dates this year will be Saturday 25th February and Saturday 11th March (if there is a need for a second round). Unfortunately due to the sheer number of applicants and the number of members of Chambers required to run interviews, we cannot offer alternative interview dates.

Mini Pupillage 

Chambers will accept two applications by email per calendar month, on a first come first served basis. The week long mini-pupillage will then take place at a mutually convenient date later on in the year. All enquiries in the first instance are to be made to Secretary to the Pupillage Committee, Rebecca Penfold, via email to rebecca.penfold@drystone.com

Application is by way of a CV and covering letter, to be sent by email only to Richard Davies (richard.davies@drystone.com) with the subject ‘Mini Pupillage Application’. Applicants are requested to identify in their covering letter any particular areas of chambers expertise that they wish to shadow: crime (defence), crime (prosecution), extradition, immigration or regulatory. Applicants are also requested to include dates to avoid and to indicate the geographical region they wish to observe in their covering letter. Applicants must be at university level or above.

Unfortunately, due to the sheer volume of applications we are unable to offer any feedback on mini-pupillage applications.