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Mini Pupillage

Unfortunately, it was not possible for Chambers to offer mini-pupillages for many months because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Instead, Francis Taylor Building hosted an online virtual mini-pupillage on 9 April 2021 that consisted of a day of workshops and talks, and Chambers participated in a number of other, mostly virtual, education and outreach events for aspiring barristers interested in learning more about our work. 

We are pleased to announce that Chambers will be re-starting mini-pupillages from October 2021. In addition, following the success of the online virtual mini-pupillage day, Chambers will now look to host that event on an annual basis as well as organise a virtual open day in line with the Pupillage Gateway timetable to enable prospective pupillage applicants to hear from, and speak to, members of Chambers. 

Please see below for further details regarding mini-pupillage and the virtual mini-pupillage day, and how to apply. Further details regarding the virtual mini-pupillage day and virtual open day will be published on the website in due course.

Mini-pupillages are short, funded periods of work experience with Chambers usually lasting for three days, from Tuesday to Thursday. They provide an opportunity for mini-pupils to meet members of Chambers, to be introduced to the type of work we do and to life in Chambers. 

Mini-pupillages involve attending court with members of Chambers, reading papers, carrying out research and drafting. 

Wherever possible mini-pupils will be provided with in-person opportunities to attend court and to meet members of Chambers. However, because of the Covid-19 Pandemic, for the foreseeable future it is expected that mini-pupils will access some of their work experience remotely.

Whilst the norm will continue to be for mini-pupils to attend Chambers in person, we will consider requests for mini-pupils to attend virtual experiences from their home where an applicant is not able to travel to attend an in-person mini-pupillage due, for example, to health reasons.

Chambers will look to offer 20 mini-pupillages per year, split into three periods: January to March, April to July and October to December. Mini-pupillages are not offered on Bank Holidays or during the Christmas, Easter or summer vacations.

Expenses reimbursement
FTB will reimburse mini-pupils for reasonable travel expenses within the UK upon the production of receipts and will cover reasonable subsistence costs. In addition, mini-pupils who reasonably require hotel accommodation in order to complete a mini-pupillage may submit a request for the reimbursement of accommodation expenses within their application (see below).

Virtual mini-pupillage day
During the course of the day, participants will hear from members and staff about pupillage and tenancy in FTB, including the application and interview process and insights from all levels of seniority about practice in FTB’s areas of specialism. There will also be opportunities to take part in interactive advocacy exercises, discuss leading cases Chambers has been involved in and ask any burning questions about FTB, pupillage and the Bar in general.

Prospective pupils are encouraged to undertake a mini-pupillage at Francis Taylor Building and / or to attend the virtual mini-pupillage day. Although we consider both to provide useful opportunities to meet prospective pupils, neither is a pre-requisite for their selection and our mini-pupillages are not assessed.

Applications for mini-pupillage
We are now accepting applications for mini-pupillages during the period 1 November to 21 December and the period January to March 2022. 

We will invite applications for mini-pupillage during April to July 2022 in due course. However, you are welcome when applying to state a willingness to be considered for a mini-pupillage during that period.  

Applications are by cover letter (one page or less) and CV, which should be submitted as attachments to an email to by 30 September 2021. Please state in the subject-line that you are applying for a mini-pupillage and state the period/s you are applying for.

You are advised to use the cover letter to explain why you would like a mini-pupillage at Francis Taylor Building and why you are a suitable candidate, having regard to the marking criteria (see below). The cover letter should state any dates during the period applied for when you are not available.

The cover letter should set out (if appropriate) any request to attend experiences remotely at home, for Chambers to provide access to a laptop and for the funding of accommodation costs. Any request for the funding of accommodation costs should explain why hotel accommodation is reasonably required and confirm that the mini-pupil is not able to meet those costs from their own funds.

Chambers’ mini-pupillages and the virtual mini-pupillage are designed to be most useful to those who are eligible (or who will be shortly eligible) to apply for pupillage.

We therefore require that:

  • Law students must be in at least their second year of a qualifying law degree by the time they undertake a mini-pupillage with us. More information on qualifying law degrees is available here.
  • Non-law students must have at least started the GDL by the time they undertake a mini-pupillage with us.

We welcome applications from candidates who are now in work, having previously obtained a qualifying law degree or the GDL.

If you are unsure whether you are eligible or would like to request an exemption from the above requirements please contact us at the email address above before applying.

Marking criteria
Applications, taken to be your CV and cover letter, are marked according to the following criteria:

  • Academic achievement (10 marks);
  • Intellectual ability (10 marks);
  • Advocacy (10 marks);
  • Interest in Francis Taylor Building (10 marks); and,
  • Extra-Curricular activity (10 marks).
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