Mini-Pupillage at St Ives Chambers

St Ives Chambers is committed to supporting those interested in a career at the Bar. Our Mini-Pupillage Scheme offers an insight into life at the Bar and the areas of law that Chambers specialises in. Unfortunately, Chambers does not offer work experience weeks. Applicants interested in learning more about life as a barrister at St Ives Chambers should apply for a Mini-Pupillage through this scheme.

St Ives offers three-day mini-pupillages in Birmingham. Successful applicants will spend time with members of Chambers across all areas of practice.

How to apply

Applications are considered on a rolling basis and are welcomed at any time throughout the year. Applicants will receive a response no later than 3 months after their application has been submitted, although we hope to provide a response much sooner than that. Applications are encouraged from those who are at undergraduate or post-graduate level.

All applicants should submit a CV and a covering letter explaining why they are applying for a mini-pupillage at St Ives Chambers. Applicants are invited to identify which area(s) of law they are interested in. While not guaranteed, all efforts will be made to ensure that successful applicants spend time in their identified practice area(s).

Written applications will be assessed in accordance with the following criteria:-

·       Academic record and intellectual ability;

·       Resilience, commitment, and motivation to practice at the Bar;

·       Reasons for applying to St Ives Chambers;

·       Public speaking experience (e.g. debating, mooting, etc.); and

·       Written communication skills and presentation of application.

Applications must be sent in hard copy. Electronic applications will not be considered. Applications should be marked FAO Tom Lawal – Mini-Pupillage Co-ordinator and be sent / hand delivered to St Ives Chambers, 1 – 3 Whittall Street, Birmingham, B4 6DH. Applications must include the email address and telephone number of the applicant.

If any further information is required, please write to

Why undertake a Mini-Pupillage at St Ives?

“A mini-pupillage is the perfect opportunity for you to see what it is like to be a barrister and to see if it is a career for you. Be smart about where you do your mini-pupillages and look at the sort of work that a set does.”

“When I was applying for mini’s I would look for a number of features about a set. Firstly, where are they based? If you’ve got no intention of living and working in that area, don’t bother applying. Next look at the type of work chambers undertakes, St Ives is a mixed common law set and will do a variety of work, if you go for a crime only set, that is all you will do. Finally, look at the current members of chambers, do you recognise anyone? Do you recognise any of their cases? Is the work they do interesting to you?”

“There is no ideal number of mini-pupillages, you could do ten and get nothing from them or you could do two and learn a vast amount. Use a mini-pupillage as an opportunity to meet as many members of chambers as possible and start making contacts. The more you know about a set and its members, the more personal you can make your application. If you can stand out on a mini-pupillage you might just be able to stand out in interview. Most importantly, keep in contact with a set, who knows what opportunities may arise.” George Smith, Pupil Barrister 2018/2019