I graduated from the University of Reading in 2015 and studied the BPTC at the University of Law graduating in 2017 with a Very Competent. I am currently undertaking my pupillage at East Anglian Chambers primarily in criminal law.
This week a partner at the law firm Tuckers received a death threat for representing Jack Shephard, dubbed by the media as the ‘speedboat killer’. The letter stated: “Accidents happen, people get stabbed in London, pets get poisoned, children run over” and was signed off “Heil Hitler”.
The BPTC is designed to give people the skills to practise as a barrister. However, before embarking on at least one year of intense study, it is worth giving some thought to whether you are also ready to spend five years applying for pupillages and whether you are likely to obtain one in that time.
Espousing the benefits of legal aid has always been a passion of mine. Legal aid is a topic rarely portrayed in a positive light in the press, but as the Secret Barrister so aptly (as ever) put it “without it, the rule of law collapses”.
The Bar Standards Board recently announced that the minimum salary paid to pupil barristers will be increased to align with the living wage. Despite concerns that some chambers will suffer financially or be priced out of offering pupillages, this increase is likely to make a significant difference to those embarking on their career at the bar.
The criminal courts are pushing for everything to be digitalised and to get as far away as possible from paper-based systems. In principle, and when fully operational, this would mean things are cheaper and more efficient, however, nine times out of 10 such systems are not up to standard.