We pride ourselves on our investment in our pupils. They are the barristers in whom Chambers' future resides; our selection procedure is rigorous but fair.
The Chambers Student Guide 2013 says of Blackstone Chambers 'Super-slick and smooth as silk - 37 of them to be precise - Blackstone cannot help but impress... And as expected, the practice is as varied as the biscuit selection.' This builds on recent year's comments that “[Chambers] has a ‘gregarious’ atmosphere and, for the benefit of pupils, effort is made to ‘create a relatively relaxed environment during what is a naturally stressful period’…..'The cross section of work on offer lends itself to diversity’ and 'the set is as good as its word in being open-minded as regards to who and what you are, and where you come from’.”
Please note that mini pupillages are a vital part of our applications process. Accordingly, no pupillage will be offered at Blackstone Chambers unless the applicant has undertaken an assessed mini pupillage.
Blackstone Chambers is a member of Pupillage Gateway – the online pupillage application scheme promoted by our professional body, the Bar Council. Any applications for pupillage at Blackstone Chambers must be made to us via Pupillage Gateway.
The Pupillage Gateway applications window for pupillage commencing in 2015 is now closed. The applications window for 2016 applications will open in April 2015.
More information about the application process can be found in our pupillage guide, which can be downloaded from this page. Full details of the Pupillage Gateway scheme can be obtained from the Bar Council website.
Potential applicants who do not fall within the Pupillage Gateway criteria should contact Julia Hornor, our Chambers Director, for further information. In any event any application by such an applicant should follow the format of our mini pupillage application form, which can be downloaded from the mini pupillage section of this site.
Pupillage at Blackstone Chambers
We believe that pupils should be involved in every aspect of their pupil supervisor’s work. We give our pupils a rounded overview of a barrister’s role, and equip them for the legal and practical challenges they will face in practice.
As a pupil at Blackstone Chambers, you will have four pupil supervisors through the year. Pupil supervisors are chosen to ensure that each pupil gets a solid grounding in the three core areas of Chambers’ work – commercial, employment, and public law. Beyond that core, you will experience your supervisors’ particular areas of expertise. In recent years, for example, supervisors have been experts in areas including competition law, immigration law, and financial regulation.
Pupillage at Blackstone Chambers is very much a hands-on experience. From your first day with your supervisor you will get stuck into whatever cases your supervisor is instructed on at that moment. The typical work involves doing first drafts of the documents which your pupil supervisor is working on. You will therefore develop a wide experience of drafting pleadings and other court documents, writing skeleton arguments and compiling written advices. You may also be asked to do a first draft of questions to be used in a cross examination, or to prepare opening or closing submissions.
You will also be involved in every step of the advisory and litigation process. Pupils attend conferences with clients, listen in on phone conversations where appropriate, and are encouraged to discuss the strategic, procedural and ethical elements of cases with their supervisors.
The emphasis which we place on the close working relationship between pupil and supervisor means that pupils do not do any additional work for other members of Chambers. You will be able to focus entirely on the cases which you are involved in on a day-to-day basis.
Because Blackstone pupils are exposed to such a wide range of legal areas, the whole year is non-practising, which means that pupils do not do any of their own work during pupillage. On the other hand, we strongly encourage our pupils to take on pro bono cases with FRU or other charities, and we will provide support and ensure that you have the time you need to dedicate to pro bono work.
We currently offer a pupillage award of £60,000 for pupillage commencing in 2014. Pupils may apply to draw down up to £17,000 during their BPTC year. These figures are not affected if, like many of our pupils, you are successful in obtaining further financial assistance from your Inn.
Law Fairs & Events
Over the past twelve months we have been involved in an exciting range of events. As well as attending law fairs we have increased links with a number of universities and have spoken at careers based events aiming to assist those thinking of a career at the Bar. In addition to this we have supported charities and pro bono groups in various ways, aiming to reach out to those who have more limited access to information regarding the Bar.
Over the next twelve months we are looking to increase awareness about the Bar to people of all ages and backgrounds through participation in a number of events. In addition to this we will maintain relationships with existing organisations and universities.
Cambridge De Smith Moot
BPP Bar Event
UCL Bar Evening
Kings Moot Workshop
Bristol University visit
Exeter students visit Chambers
QM Essay competition and drinks reception
Kaplan Bar Evening
Leeds University visit
UCL Bar Careers Talk
UCL Barristers Cocktail Party
Cambridge Barristers Event
Inner Temple IV
City University Joint Chambers Evening
Kaplan Public Law Evening
Oxford Law Fair
UCL Law Fair
SOAS Networking Evening
LSE Bar & Advocacy Evening
Warwick students visit Chambers
UCLU Law for All
Temple Bar Scholar - host a scholar
City Law Fair
King's 'Alternative Routes to The Bar' evening
Visit to Oxford University
Kings Law Fair
Queen Mary Law Fair
We have produced a general “Pupillage Guide” which will, we hope, provide you with answers to many of the questions you may have about pupillage at Blackstone Chambers. This can be downloaded here.