Bar Council holds eighth annual Bar Placement Week in London

6 July 2015

High achieving Year 12 and 13 students from non-traditional backgrounds will this week take part in the Bar Council's eighth annual Bar Placement Week in London, which is conducted in partnership with the Social Mobility Foundation. 

The week forms part of the Bar Council's ongoing commitment to improving social mobility within the profession and will see more than 60 students from across the capital participate in this year's event. 

The programme includes a three-and-a-half day placement with a barrister, a visit to the Royal Courts of Justice or the Old Bailey, and participation in a mock trial, led by the Advocacy Training Council. Students will be asked to write an essay on their experience at the end of the week, with prizes awarded for the best essays and advocacy skills at a reception on Friday evening. 

The Bar Council organises a series of Bar Placement Weeks each year in London, Birmingham, Leeds, and Manchester, with London being the biggest and most established. 

Alistair MacDonald QC, Chairman of the Bar, said: 

"The Bar Council is committed to ensuring the profession continues to become more diverse and representative of the society it serves. We are proud to organise events like the Bar Placement Week, which provides 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. 

"We value the continuing partnership with the Social Mobility Foundation, which does so much important and influential work in supporting extremely capable A-level students realise their potential. 

"Access to high quality work experience is crucial for students to make informed decisions about further study and eventual career choices. It is hugely beneficial to give students access to high-quality work experience, which they would otherwise struggle to obtain."

                                                                     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's Bar Placement Week initiative, aimed at improving social mobility within the profession, won the Award for Diversity and Inclusion at the Halsbury Legal Awards in September 2014.

3. 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