Bar Council China Training Scheme celebrates 25th anniversary

9 July 2015

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, is this week celebrating the 25th anniversary of its Training Scheme for Chinese Lawyers. 

The scheme provides an opportunity for Chinese lawyers to experience practice at the English Bar and succeeds the Lord Chancellor's Training Scheme, which operated for twenty years. 

Over 300 lawyers from China have participated in the programme since its commencement, with the most recent delegation of Chinese lawyers currently in London for seven weeks. 

Through the scheme, Chinese lawyers are able gain a practical insight and understanding of the English legal system and the way in which the Bar adds value to it, whilst at the same time enhancing the legal skills and knowledge required for their international practices. 

A number of events are being held to celebrate the anniversary, beginning with a reception on Thursday evening and a seminar and networking lunch on Friday, with many former participants in the programme travelling from China to attend these events. 

The events have been kindly supported by 20 Essex Street, Stone Chambers, 39 Essex Chambers, XXIV Old Buildings and Erskine Chambers. 

Alistair MacDonald QC, Chairman of the Bar, said: 

"It is a great pleasure to welcome many previous participants in the scheme back to London, who will be travelling from China with their families, to celebrate this special occasion. 

"We are proud of the scheme's success over the past 25 years, which has helped Chinese lawyers enhance their understanding of the way English barristers operate and how to instruct them, in addition to building their legal skills. 

"The scheme offers a bespoke academic programme, five weeks vocational training in barristers' chambers and a series of visits to key legal institutions, all of which enable participating Chinese lawyers to develop valuable contacts and assists them in building a successful international legal practice. Similarly, the chambers hosting these lawyers gain a unique insight into the Chinese legal market. 

"With the Bar playing an increasingly visible role in an international market place, it is vital that we share our knowledge and ideas with other jurisdictions, whether via exchange programmes, business delegations, or training schemes. 

"Programmes like the Bar Council's Training Scheme helps facilitate the exchange of legal knowledge and skills, and enables valuable links with other jurisdictions to be established and strengthened. We hope that the experience and knowledge obtained and shared by participating lawyers encourages others to take part in the scheme."


Notes to editors:

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

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