Applications for pupillage are via the Pupillage Gateway. Please see our pupillage page.

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




5RB is a member of the Pupillage Gateway ( 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.



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, or by letter to 5RB.

Please note that applications for mini-pupillage at 5RB must be made using Chambers’ mini-pupillage application form (here).  Please email your completed form to

The programme which was due to run in March 2020 has been postponed until further notice. It is likely that the subsequent programme, for which applications are now being accepted, will take place in December 2020. The closing date for applications for the possible December 2020 programme will be 30 October 2020.



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 application process and interviews.

The current members of the Committee are as follows:

Pupil supervisors

Those members who are currently able to act as Pupil Supervisors at 5RB are:

Points to note


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

For an insight into pupillage at 5RB, we asked Luke Browne, our pupil, a few questions:

Where did you go to university and what did you study? I studied law at Trinity College Dublin, and did an MPhil in politics at Cambridge University. I then worked for several years before deciding to come to the Bar.

Why did you choose 5RB?  The area of law I’m most interested in is media law, and 5RB is the leading set in this area. Members of chambers have been involved in practically every important case in recent years; learning from them is an incredible opportunity.

What’s the best thing about pupillage?  It’s practical and hands-on: you learn by doing, asking questions, building up your knowledge, and incorporating what you learn into your work. By the end of my first month I had produced two draft opinions and one draft skeleton argument: I’ve found this a great way to get to grips with the law, and improve my advocacy and drafting skills.

What’s the worst?  Obviously you want to impress, and produce work to a very high standard. If you’re dealing with an unfamiliar area of law this can be tricky. But my pupil supervisor and other members of chambers are very giving of their time in explaining concepts, reviewing my work, and helping me improve.

Was pupillage what you were expecting?  Yes, by and large. Pupillage is in general quite a unique year, but through mini-pupillages and conversations with barristers I had a sense of what to expect. Everyone at 5RB is very friendly and welcoming, which has made it a really enjoyable experience.

What advice would you give to potential applicants?  In general, think about why you feel you’re a strong fit for the profession, for the area of law you’re interested in, and for the particular chambers you’re applying to, and build your application out from there.

In terms of media law specifically, it’s definitely worth keeping an eye on the latest legal developments – particularly if you’re invited to a pupillage interview. The 5RB website is a good place to start, and there are various media law podcasts and blogs that are helpful too.