Applications for pupillage commencing October 2021 at 1MCB Chambers are now open.

About 1MCB Chambers

Founded 40 years ago, 1MCB Chambers promotes access to justice for a diverse range of professional and lay clients and particularly for legally aided and vulnerable clients, in situations which engage their human rights or expose them to discrimination.

Chambers’ expertise across a wide range of areas, our commitment to excellence and to finding solutions for our clients, and our collegiate working environment mean that we are able to share our knowledge between and within areas, to be approachable and to offer the highest standards of representation.

Chambers is guided by its commitment to the communities it serves.  We strive to support our members’ innovative, and often quiet, efforts to use law both to obtain justice for our individual clients and more broadly as a tool for social change.  We owe much of our ethos to the leadership of Len Woodley QC, the first Afro-Caribbean barrister to become a QC, who was head of chambers for the twelve years from 1988 to 2000.  He was involved in some of the most important race trials in the in the 70s and 80s. His dedication to civil liberties and equality of opportunity was not showy but it was radical, and it is this approach that remains evident in Chambers today.

We are a very diverse set of Chambers with a breadth and depth of expertise across a broad range of areas including crime, immigration and asylum, housing and community care, family, employment, actions against the police, public law, international law, animal law and civil litigation.  It is important to us that we continue to not only continue to do legally aided work but try to find ways to share our knowledge and offer support across the sector.  The pressures on legal aid providers, following deep cuts and ongoing funding issues, continue to challenge the sector as well as access to justice.

Chambers supports its members’ strong links with community organisations and charities committed to bringing about structural change and addressing inequality both locally and internationally.  Members regularly provide expert advice and representation for these organisations as well as to representatives and on a direct access basis.

About pupillage

We are looking for exceptional applications from candidates who can demonstrate a firm commitment to our ethos, combined with academic and/or legal excellence and a desire to make a contribution to Chambers.

Applicants with a particular interest and intention to practise in criminal law in the future are particularly invited. All applications will, however, be considered on their merits.

Those who are successful can expect pupillage to be focused on criminal law and to spend most days during second six in the Magistrates’ Court as well as some time in the Crown Court.  You will also to have the opportunity to be exposed to a wide range of practice areas during first six, with scope to tailor some of the content of pupillage further according to preference.  Pupils will be allocated up to two supervisors and a mentor and can expect to find a supportive atmosphere in Chambers.  Pupils will be provided with training materials, in house advocacy training, guidance and a pathway to achieving the competences set out in the Professional Statement

The pupillage award will be awarded in equal parts.  During first six the award is paid monthly and in the second six you will receive monthly guaranteed earnings.  Pupils will receive £20,000 over the course of the pupillage but have the potential to earn more, depending on their areas of interest during second six and when in practice.  Travel is reimbursed, and pupils do not pay rent, or a percentage on their earnings.

Following 12 months of training applications for tenancy will be accepted.  We have a high retention rate following pupillage and as such our recruitment process is rigorous as we recruit with the hope that we will retain you as a tenant.  This is subject to satisfactory completion of the pupillage training.

Pupillage in 2019:

 If you are not familiar with 1MCB Chambers, Geeta Koska who completed pupillage in 2019 provided the following reflection:

“During pupillage I received incredible legal training, and gained exposure to numerous practice areas, with a strong emphasis on legal aid work. I was supported by a generous network of pupil supervisors, mentors, staff and members. The breadth of work which I encountered has positioned me well to assist clients in resolving interdisciplinary legal problems, whilst also achieving a good grounding in the legal principles and procedures peculiar to specialist areas like immigration and housing.

What I valued most was being able to observe members of Chambers applying the law to promote and protect civil, political, economic and social rights…members have furthered my belief that the law is an effective instrument to fight for accountability and justice. Overall, pupillage was a challenging but rewarding experience and all the members of 1MCB Chambers have been critical in sustaining and encouraging me in my development as a barrister.”

Details of how to apply

Download and complete the application form, and an equal opportunities form.  Both can be found here.

Both forms should be returned to julie.clarke@1mcb.com with the subject heading: “[Your full name]: Pupillage Application 2021.”  The documents should be saved as either a Word document or PDF using the following format:

  1. [Your full name] pupillage application; and
  2. E and D form.

We will only accept applications on the template downloaded from our website. Please follow the instructions on the application form carefully.  You do not need to have completed mini-pupillage with us in order to apply for pupillage.

We follow the timetable set out on the Pupillage Gateway.  The deadline for applications is 8th February 2021 at 11am.  You will receive an acknowledgment email after you have submitted your application.  Applications will not be accepted for any reason after this time and as such we suggest that you submit your application well before 11am on 8th February 2020.  We aim to shortlist and make invitations for interview by the end of March 2021.  Unfortunately, we​ will not be able to give feedback if you are unsuccessful in being offered an interview.

First round interviews will take place on 17th April 2021. Second round interviews are to take place on 24th April 2021.  More details will be provided to those who are selected.

Chambers is committed to recruiting pupils on an equal opportunities basis, and so can only accept applications for pupillage (including from those with exemptions) through this route.