Bar Council holds second Bar Placement Week in Birmingham

14 July 2014

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, has today launched the second annual Bar Placement Week in Birmingham.

High-achieving Year 12 students (aged 17) from low income backgrounds will take part in the week, which involves a three-and-a-half day placement with a barrister, public speaking training delivered by the Speakers' Trust, and a workshop on how to argue like a barrister led by the Advocacy Training Council.

The week forms part of the Bar Council's ongoing commitment to improving social mobility within the profession.

The Birmingham Bar Placement Week was first launched in 2013 and follows the London Bar Placement Week held earlier this month. Following the success of earlier events in London and Birmingham, two further regional Bar Placement Weeks were launched for the first time in Leeds and Manchester in February 2014.

Nicholas Lavender QC, Chairman of the Bar, said:

"Taking part in the Bar Placement Week not only gives high-achieving young people from low-income backgrounds an opportunity to experience life at the Bar first-hand, it also helps us to demonstrate that a career at the Bar is open to everyone of ability, irrespective of background.

"The Bar Council is committed to ensuring that socio-economic background and living outside the capital are not barriers to a career as a barrister. It is hugely beneficial to give students access to high-quality work experience, which they would otherwise struggle to obtain.

"Regional initiatives are important because access to work experience opportunities is particularly lacking outside the capital. Now that we have shown that Bar Placement Week can flourish outside of the capital, we hope to go on and develop similar initiatives in other locations in England and Wales."

                                                                      ENDS

 Notes to Editors

1. Further information is available from the Bar Council Press Office on 020 7222 2525 and Press@BarCouncil.org.uk.

2. The  Bar Council represents barristers in England and Wales. It promotes: 

  • The Bar's high quality specialist advocacy and advisory services

  • Fair access to justice for all

  • The highest standards of ethics, equality and diversity across the profession, and

  • The development of business opportunities for barristers at home and abroad. 

The General Council of the Bar is the Approved Regulator of the Bar of England and Wales. It discharges its regulatory functions through the independent Bar Standards Board