Life at the Bar

Final Speech

Getting a pupillage is hard. On the other hand, I went on a dire mini-pupillage where everyone moaned on and on about how the job was buggered. It was so depressing that I swore I would never do that.

Whatever the financial risks and downsides, if you are the sort of person who cannot envisage working for anyone else; who likes risk; who would rather back their own judgement than do what someone else dictates; who wants the glory of success and is prepared to be the fan when things fail; who wants to go to bed at 4am if they want and rise at 11 if they want, just providing it gets done; who looks at the sharp end as being something they thrust in, rather than something that hits their back: if you are that sort of person then let me make it clear that this is a WONDERFUL job and well worth going for.

In which case, just do it right. And, borrowing a suggestion from The Hitch Hikers Guide –

Good Luck
(actually that’s wrong as I have just realised – but I mean it anyway – and it should be replaced with)

Don’t Panic

10 thoughts on “Final Speech

  1. Wow- thank you very much for providing this very interesting and informative advice. It’s great. I shall be grateful if you could please advise me further in relation to the prospect of the criminal bar?

    Thank you.


  2. Ani,

    I don’t have a problem devoting further posts to particular specialities – providing I can sensibly say something about them – but what exactly are you wanting? I think a bit more guidance would help me…

  3. Hi Simon,

    Well I am interested in becoming a criminal barrister and would like some advice as to the work involved? the pros and cons of prosecution and defence barristers? and mainly whether there is likely to be a salary increase in the criminal bar as it appears, at present it is a very low paid.

    I hope this helps.

    Thank you.


  4. Hi simon,

    I was wondering whether you could please enlighten me on the below question:

    Is it advisable for someone to become a solicitor first? does this make the individual stand a better chance at the bar?

    Thank you.


  5. Hello.
    I am in the early stages of thinking of a career at the Bar, and your blog is proving very useful.
    I wonder if, at some point, you would be able to post a list of books that you recommend for potential criminal practitioners in particular?
    Please continue to post, it is not often that one reads such lucid and well-considered advice.

  6. I have already recommended some books on the post All Beginnings are Difficult. The Glanville Williams book will provide you with a good start.

    I also think the legal history textbook is interesting (though that just make it clear how sad I actually am) and helpful to an understanding of how the criminal law developed. If I think of anything else I’ll amend the All Beginnings post.

    Thank you for the compliment. I’m blushing.

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