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Guildhall Chambers (Crime) - 12 months - October 2023

AETO information
Name of AETO:
Guildhall Chambers
Head of AETO:
Anna Vigars QC
Address of AETO:
23 Broad Street
AETO's website address:
Main practice area:
Practice areas:
Employment and Industrial Relations; Administrative; Public Law; Clinical Negligence; Commercial; Costs; Employment; Equality and Discrimination; Personal Injury; Property and Land; Professional Regulation; Sports law; Crime; Court of Protection; Insolvency and Restructuring; Regulatory
Specialist services:
Mediation; Public Access Work; Alternative Dispute Resolution (mediation and arbitration)
Number of junior tenancies (in the last three years):
Pupillage vacancy information
Number of pupillages:
Financial support level:
£40,000 - £49,999
Closing date:
9 February 2022 at 2:00 PM
Pupillage start date:
October 2023
Pupillage type:
12 month pupillage
Guildhall Chambers is a standout set on the Western Circuit and one of the UK’s leading multidisciplinary sets with a national reputation for formidable advice, advocacy and client service. We are described in the directories as “an amazing set” offering “first-class” service where “the quality all around is phenomenal.”

Chambers comprises over 80 barristers including 9 silks practising from Bristol. We are ranked by Legal 500 in 15 practice areas and within those we are a top-tier leading set in 12 with 86 individual rankings. Chambers & Partners ranks us as a top-tier leading set in 12 practice areas with 72 individua rankings. We are proud to be ranked so highly in all our core practice areas and this is highlighted by our continued successes in legal awards.

This pupillage is within the Crime team at Guildhall. The team has a mix of barristers ranging from junior members who have recently completed their pupillage to very experienced ‘senior juniors’ and QCs. In their first six months, a pupil can expect to see all areas of criminal defence and prosecution work from murder, serious sexual allegations, slavery, complex drugs conspiracies, and serious fraud, to road traffic cases. In the second six months, the pupil will undertake their own cases at the junior end. Some members of the team also undertake regulatory and professional discipline work and there may be an opportunity to become involved in these areas.

Pupils' progress is monitored closely by the supervisor and the Heads of Pupillage and feedback is given regularly. Pupils are encouraged to spend time with, and do work for, as wide a number of members of the team as possible in order to gain maximum experience of different styles of work and levels of seniority. Members will provide constructive feedback to the pupil on every piece of work undertaken.

A career at the Bar is incredibly rewarding; however, it is also challenging. That is why each pupil has, as well as a supervisor, a mentor who is another member of the team to whom he or she can turn in confidence if necessary. It is of great importance to Chambers that each pupil feels properly supported during what can be an exiting and daunting year. Our objective is to help every pupil fulfil their potential.

Applicants should be able to demonstrate intellectual ability, excellent communication/advocacy skills, and an ability to work under pressure as well as flexibility of thinking, sound judgement, and good interpersonal skills. It is also desirable for candidates to be able to demonstrate an interest in and commitment to a specialist practice within the Crime team.

Our selection process aims to be rigorous and fair, and to comply with the Bar Standards Board Pupillage Handbook and the Fair Recruitment Guide. We select pupils on ability and potential alone, without regard to disability, gender, race, age, and sexual orientation or political affiliation.

Financial level of support: £22,500 grant and £17,500 guaranteed earnings. £7,500 can be drawn down in the professional training year.

Application Questions

The following questions will form the Pupillage Application Questionnaire section of the application form for this pupillage vacancy. These are included here to allow you to prepare in advance.

  1. 1. Why do you believe you will make an exceptional barrister? In your answer, please identify the relevant experience and skills that you believe will help you in your career. (250 words)
  2. 2. Please give an example of a time when you have used advocacy skills in a non-legal and difficult situation to achieve a better outcome. (250 words)
  3. 3. Please give reasons why you are interested in practising in criminal law? (250 words)
  4. 4. Please identify a recent case or development relevant to the field of criminal law which has interested you and explain why you find it interesting. (250 words)
How to apply
To apply, please click on the Apply Online link below and then complete the online application form.