Recruitment

We are currently inviting applications to join 5RB from prospective pupils. Please see our pupillage page, and other pages listed in the menu to the left.

Any vacancies for established practitioners or third six pupils will be advertised here.

 

Pupillage

Pupillage

5RB is seeking to recruit pupils for 12-month pupillages commencing October 2020.

5RB is a member of the Pupillage Gateway (www.pupillagegateway.com) and all applications for pupillage must be made to chambers via the Gateway.

Applicants should consult the Pupillage Gateway website for full details of the scheme and the pupillages on offer.

For further information on pupillage, please see our Pupillage Policy

Mini-pupillage

Mini-pupillage

5RB runs three mini-pupillage programmes each year. On these programmes we accept up to 6 mini-pupils for 2 days. During the 2 days you will have the opportunity to attend court hearings involving members of 5RB, to learn about our work, and to meet various members of Chambers.

If you would like further information about our mini-pupillage programme or details of when the next one is scheduled, please contact Chambers by telephone on 020 7242 2902, by email at mini-pupillage@5rb.com, or by letter to 5RB.

Please note that applications for mini-pupillage at 5RB must be made using Chambers’ mini-pupillage application form (here). The next programme will be in July 2019, the closing date for applications being 31 May 2019.

Tenancy

Tenancy

5RB seeks primarily to recruit tenants from our pupils. We are not currently inviting applications for tenancy from other practitioners. 

Pupillage Committee and Pupil Supervisors

The Pupillage Committee

The Pupillage Committee is made up of several members of 5RB intended to represent a spread of seniority across the set. Members of the Committee are responsible for conducting the pupillage interviews in the first instance.

The current members of the Committee are as follows:

Pupil supervisors

Those members who are currently Registered Pupil Supervisors at 5RB are:

Points to note

Recruitment

Data Protection

We comply with the General Data Protection Regulation and Data Protection Act 2018. Information derived from application forms/CVs will be used for recruitment purposes only and will not be passed to any other organisation.

Equal Opportunities

5RB is committed to equal opportunities for all, irrespective of race, colour, creed, ethnic or national origins, gender, marital status, sexuality, disability or age. 5RB is committed to and has implemented the Bar’s Equality Code.

Closing Dates

It is important that you take careful note of any closing date that applies to an application. Save in exceptional circumstances, we will not accept applications received after this date. If you anticipate problems in complying with the deadline, please contact our Administrator before the deadline expires.

Interview Arrangements

If you have any particular requirements in respect of your needs at interview (e.g. sign Interpretation, wheelchair access etc.) or regarding the scheduling of your interview please give details in a covering note with your application. We will do everything we can to accommodate your requests.

Pupillage Gateway: Completing application forms

Pupillage Gateway and other applications:

Completing application forms

When using the Pupillage Gateway, always read the instructions carefully. For example, if it says not to include additional information, don’t; and if it sets a word limit do not exceed it.

Your application is important to us: it provides the only information we have about you upon which to base our decision. Plan what you are going to say. Consider preparing a draft application form before committing yourself to the final version. Sometimes it is helpful to get someone to read it through to check for any spelling/grammar errors.

If applying through the Pupillage Gateway, you MUST use the online application form provided on the Gateway. For those exceptional applications which are entitled to be made outside of the Gateway process, please try and type the form. If you do need to hand write the form, please write legibly in dark ink. Your application is probably one of hundreds and if the person who is short-listing cannot read it, s/he will have difficulty in identifying your skills.

Answer the Pupillage Gateway questions clearly and concisely – do not go off at a tangent and do not ignore the question altogether. When answering the questions remember to provide evidence to support any claims to have the relevant skills or attributes. Please pay particular attention to the 5RB-specific question which is asked on the Gateway application.

Be realistic. We are a specialised chambers and the areas of work in which we practise are limited. You have 12 choices in the Pupillage Gateway. Use them wisely: only apply to us if you are serious about seeking a pupillage here and you have taken some time to find out what we do.

If you have a specific question about any application, please contact Chambers.

Frequently asked questions

Recruitment – FAQs

Is any prior experience of media law required?

No. It is not necessary for you to have a law degree, still less for you to have studied law relevant to our practice areas. However, any relevant experience you can demonstrate will certainly be considered relevant to your application.

Do I need to do a mini-pupillage at 5RB before applying for pupillage?

No, and our mini-pupillage programme is not an assessed one. Again, although one of the factors we consider in the application process is the degree to which an applicant has demonstrated in interest in or aptitude for our areas of work prior to applying to us for pupillage (which can, of course, include having completed a mini-pupillage with us), we do not consider that it is essential for you to have done a mini-pupillage. We do however recommend that you apply for a mini-pupillage if you are thinking about applying for pupillage.

Can I make a deferred application for pupillage?

We do not encourage such applications. It is difficult for us to make decisions about recruitment so far in advance particularly when this decision has necessarily to be made without the benefit of seeing the full range of potential applicants for the relevant places. If you consider that there are special reasons why you need to make a deferred application, we would encourage you to contact us before submitting your application.

Do I need a first or a 2:1?

Competition for pupillages is fierce at 5RB as it is across the whole Bar. Ordinarily we would look for a 2:1 degree or better. However, a candidate’s performance at degree level is just one of the factors that we consider on your application form. Whilst we do not screen out applicants that do not have a 2:1 or first – all applications are considered – we encourage applicants to be realistic about their prospects if they have a poor academic background. The minimum academic qualifications are those required for call to the Bar.

What is pupillage at 5RB like?

You can expect to spend your 12-months broken up into four 3-month periods with one of our pupil supervisors. During those periods it is likely that you will spend most of your time working for your own pupil supervisor, although in the later stages of your pupillage we will encourage you to do work for other members of 5RB. Your work will be reviewed by your pupil supervisor and feedback provided. During your pupillage it is likely that there will be a number of in-house training seminars as well as opportunities for you to spend time in the in-house legal departments of national newspapers and broadcasters. Also see Meet our Pupil to get an idea of what day to day life is like for a pupil at 5RB.

What opportunity will there be for me to get advocacy experience in my 2nd six-months?

Limited. The nature of our work means that advocacy opportunities for pupils would be rare. Indeed, this was one of the reasons why, for many years, we did not offer 2nd six-month pupillages. However, 5RB has strong links with Islington Legal Advice Centre, which can offer pupils in their 2nd-six the opportunity to provide pro bono advocacy. In addition, 5RB actively supports pupils volunteering for FRU.

Meet our pupil

Meet our Pupil

For an insight into pupillage at 5RB, we asked Lily Walker-Parr, our pupil, a few questions:

Where did you go to university and what did you study?
I read law at the University of Bristol before studying the BPTC at the University of Law, London.

Why did you choose 5RB?
5RB is unique in its reputation for defamation and privacy work. Members of chambers are leaders in these fields and it is humbling to learn from both authors of the practitioner textbooks and those who appeared in the seminal cases.

I completed a number of mini pupillages before applying, but 5RB was the only set in which I saw such interesting work coupled with an unfailingly welcoming atmosphere. From then on, I knew that this was where I wanted to start my career at the Bar.

What’s the best thing about pupillage?
5RB covers a wide area of media law and my time in chambers has already been characterised by extreme variety. The cases to which I have been exposed have covered issues of defamation, data protection, vicarious liability, limitation, privacy and family proceedings. There is an unshakeable feeling that the work is at the cutting edge of legal development, and it is often the case that something you are working on one day appears on the front pages of the next day’s newspapers.

What’s the worst?
You get thrown in at the deep end. Within my first two weeks I had completed written exercises and observed a two day trial at the Court of Appeal. Skills and knowledge required in practice are different from anything that I have come across in academia because of the particular idiosyncrasies of this work.

The learning curve is sometimes quite challenging, and made more daunting by the prospect of completing work for people with an encyclopaedic knowledge of the law. Luckily, both my supervisor and other members of chambers are more than willing to take time to explain concepts, review work and direct me to the most useful resources.

Was pupillage what you were expecting?
I was concerned about the challenges which can accompany being the only pupil. Since starting, however, I have been surprised to find that both the clerks and members of all levels of seniority have really taken the time to make sure that I don’t ‘sweat the small stuff’ or feel out of my depth. This really reflects the collegiate ethos of 5RB.

The Pupillage Policy was also useful in outlining the logistics of pupillage, and day to day work has generally fallen within the confines of that document.

What advice would you give to potential applicants?
Even if you haven’t studied media law as a standalone subject, there are many different ways to stay up to date with legal developments. I suggest that you check the 5RB website regularly and subscribe to media law podcasts, daily email updates and blogs which discuss the key issues arising in defamation and privacy law. These will help you to develop a broader understanding of the work that you would be undertaking in pupillage.

If able, I also suggest getting some practical experience, whether through mini pupillages or other work experience in the wider media industry. For example, I undertook work experience at a production company and an internship at a media law charity which gave me a feel for the wider media issues at play.

Finally, as is the case with any pupillage, I recommend dedicating time to your applications so that you can comfortably and convincingly explain why you are the right person for that profession, area of law, and chambers.