Chambers welcomes enquires from established practitioners who would complement the strength and development of our core areas of practice.

Enquires should be made in the first instance to Chambers Senior Clerk and will be treated in the strictest confidence.

As part of the application procedure you are likely to be asked to provide copies of your professional diary and details of your earnings.

Chambers is committed to Equality and Diversity and as such will require prospective applicants to complete the following application form.


Current Pupillage Status:


Magdalen Chambers in Exeter invites applications for up to two pupillages commencing in October 2021. Please note that we are separately advertising for up to two pupillages to start in October 2022. You may apply for both pupillages but they have to be separate applications.

Chambers intends to recruit one family and one civil pupil. Please be clear in your application which is your preferred area of specialism.

Magdalen Chambers is the largest set in the south-west (south of Bristol) with 43 members and is looking to expand further through the recruitment of outstanding pupils with the potential to become tenants. Chambers is a friendly and welcoming set with a reputation for excellence in both family and general civil law, cultivated by members across Chambers who have been consistently recognised by legal directories such as Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500.

Chambers is committed to ensuring that pupils receive training of the highest standard. Chambers has recently undertaken a comprehensive review of its pupillage policies and procedures to ensure that the training provided continues to meet this expectation. Training is designed to ensure that pupils are able to meet the competences in the Professional Statement to the threshold standard by the end of their pupillage. Chambers is equally as committed to the wellbeing of its pupils and has been awarded the Bar Council Certificate of Recognition for the support it provides to members and staff.

Pupils will be allocated one pupil supervisor but will be expected to spend time with other members in order to gain exposure to the different types of work that Chambers undertakes. In your second six, you will start to take on your own cases as well as continuing to undertake work with, or on behalf of, tenants. A junior member will be allocated as a mentor to provide more informal support and advice.

The training for pupillage will include:

  • Regular opportunities for pupils to receive feedback on their progress from their pupil supervisor and the pupillage committee;
  • Formal reviews every three months;
  • Regular advocacy exercises;
  • The opportunity to undertake work with a variety of members specialising in different areas of law;
  • The opportunity to attend court with junior members;
  • Such flexibility as is necessary to take into account pupils’ personal circumstances;
  • Encouraging pupils to reflect critically on their own progress.

The pupillage award will be £16,322pa plus reasonable expenses (including the cost of undertaking mandatory courses). The pupillage award will be made up of Chambers’ grant plus earnings (in the second six). Pupils can reasonably expect their earnings to exceed the minimum award in their second six.

Chambers has a good track record of seeing its pupils successfully obtain tenancy at Chambers. In the last 3 years, 5 out of 5 pupils have been offered (and taken up) tenancy with Chambers.

The timetable for applications is likely to be as follows:

  • Applications to be made by 8h February 2021
  • Invitation for interview by 12th March 2021
  • Interview and advocacy exercise in the weekend of 20th March 2021
  • Offers of pupillage to be made by 7th May 2021
  • Pupillage to commence in October 2021
  • (Chambers reserves the right to make such variations to this timetable and process as are necessary)

Pupils will be able to apply for tenancy from approximately July 2022, to commence at the end of their pupillage.

Application Questions

The following questions will form the Pupillage Application Questionnaire section of the application form for this pupillage vacancy. These are included here to allow you to prepare in advance.

  • With reference to your experiences and achievements, please explain why you would be suited to a career at the bar. (250 words)
  • Please explain why you have want to join Magdalen Chambers (250 words)
  • Please explain whether you are applying for a pupillage in civil or family law and why you are interested in that area. (250 words)
  • What is the greatest challenge you have faced and how have you dealt with it? (250 words)
  • If there is anything else you would like us to know about you, please tell us here (150 words)

How to apply

To apply, please click here and then complete the online application form.
Applications made other than via the portal will not be accepted.


What is Mini-Pupillage?

Chambers prides itself on its commitment to the education of aspiring members of the Bar and welcomes applicants who demonstrate the potential to secure pupillage.  We are able to provide successful applicants with an opportunity to sit with our barristers and to gain useful experience of life in Chambers.

Chambers invites applications from talented and determined individuals pursuing a career at the Bar.  Whilst it is not a prerequisite to pupillage, we recommend that anyone who intends to apply for pupillage with Chambers first completes a mini-pupillage.

Chambers welcomes applications from a broad and diverse range of applicants.  We have signed up to the Western Circuit’s Bar None project meaning that we have committed to aim for at least 50% of mini pupillages to be awarded to those from state school and/or BAME backgrounds.

What does Mini-Pupillage involve?

We aim to provide our mini-pupils with a balanced experience, which generally includes observing a range of court hearings; attending client conferences and negotiations; and undertaking written work and research.

Application procedure

Chambers considers applications for mini-pupillage from talented individuals who have commenced study for a qualifying law degree or who have studied or are studying on the GDL/CPE, BVC or BPTC courses.

Applicants should apply using the application form, which should be completed in type and emailed to minipupillage@magdalenchambers.co.uk, marked for the attention of Charles Shwenn, Secretary to the Pupillage and Membership Committee.  Applicants should please note that no documents other than the application form will be considered when assessing applications, so there is no need to attach CVs, references or detailed cover letters.

Chambers considers all applications for mini-pupillage on a fair and objective basis and is committed to ensuring compliance with Chambers’ Equality and Diversity Policy.  In particular, when considering applications, Chambers does not consider such factors as age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, race, religion or belief, sex or political stance.

For further information pertaining to the mini-pupillage process, please feel free to contact Chambers’ clerking team. Applications will be considered within two months of receipt

Mini-Pupillages during COVID-19

Please note that Chambers are not currently able to accommodate in person mini-pupillages owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.  However, applicants are still welcome to apply and be put on a waiting list for when in person mini-pupillages are available again.  We recognise that this will be disappointing to potential applicants.  Therefore, we have decided to offer successful mini-pupillage applicants a one-to-one telephone/video call with a member of Chambers to discuss life as a barrister, specific practice areas and any other questions applicants may have about the profession.  When submitting their application, applicants should indicate in their covering email whether or not they wish to take up this opportunity or be put on the waiting list for an in person mini-pupillage in the future.  We will advise successful applicants on the waiting list when we are taking bookings for in person mini-pupillages again.

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