We are one of the largest and most prestigious sets in the South West, with over 80 barristers and 7 silks.
Who We Are
Described by the Legal 500 as “a Western Circuit Powerhouse”, St John’s offers the perfect chance to build a stellar career at the Bar while enjoying the great opportunities on offer in one of the UK’s most vibrant cities. We are one of the largest and most prestigious sets in the South West, with over 80 barristers and 7 silks. Chambers UK and the Legal 500 list us as a “top-tier” leading set in all of our major practice areas, describing us as a “go-to” and “must instruct” chambers. We have recently won ‘Set of the Year 2022’ (outside London) by The Legal 500. We have been shortlisted ‘Regional Set of the Year’ by Chambers UK Bar Awards 2022 and ‘Chambers of the Year’ by Bristol Law Society, further cementing our position as a standout destination for high-quality applicants who want the very best career without compromising on quality of life.
The pupillage committee and heads of practice groups determine the pupillage requirements for the following year by reference to the BSB’s Professional Statement and any specialist checklists. You can be sure your pupillage will cover all necessary aspects of your specialist area, while giving you exposure to a broad range of styles and approaches so that you can find your own.
What you can expect:
to receive a well structured pupillage;
to carry out research for your pupil supervisor and other members of Chambers;
to prepare pleadings, advices and opinions;
to attend conferences with your pupil supervisor, the instructing solicitor, lay clients and experts;
to accompany your pupil supervisor and other members of Chambers to court in order to gain experience and a working knowledge of the court system;
to receive regular feedback on your work;
in your 2nd Six you will build on the first 6-months’ experience as well as being busy in court.
Successful candidates will typically have strong academic credentials, but we have no preference as to whether your undergraduate degree is in law or whether you have since transferred. We look for high-calibre recruits who can demonstrate certain key competencies: excellence in written and oral advocacy, the ability to analyse complex information quickly, to present arguments succinctly and persuasively, to communicate effectively with all types of people. We look for people who are determined, resilient and motivated. Experience of public speaking and mooting is desirable but not essential. We generally expect our pupils to specialise within one practice group. We take on pupils with an eye to tenancy, so our pupils do not compete with each other. Provided that they successfully complete pupillage, they can normally expect to become tenants.
£50,000 along with the loan (with an option to buy at second-hand rates at the end of the year) of the latest iPad Pro, Smart keyboard and iPen. The award is paid in 12 equal monthly instalments, subject to a claw-back to the extent of any fees actually received during the second six months of pupillage.
We are committed to recruiting new tenants f rom our pupils whenever possible. Accordingly, we offer pupillage to those who we hope and expect will become tenants. Of course there can be no guarantees, but in the majority of cases a successful pupillage will lead to an offer of tenancy.
We currently offer one mini-pupillage per month, and as of this year at least 50 per cent will go to applicants f rom non-traditional state school and BAME backgrounds, with the intention of improving access to the bar. Typically, a mini-pupil’s time will include accompanying members to court, attending conferences involving clients and/or solicitors, and reading and discussing paperwork. Mini-pupils will also have opportunity to ask questions about the profession and about pupillage.
Meet the current pupils at St John's Chambers who share information with you about their route to the BAR, why they chose St John’s Chambers, the selection process and valuable advice to aspiring barristers.
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
St John’s Chambers will ensure that each application is considered on its merits regardless of gender, age, race, religion, sexual orientation or disability.
We ask you to complete the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form to help us to monitor our fair selection and recruitment practice. None of the information contained on the form will form part of our selection process.