The pupillage experience is supplemented and enhanced with weekly advocacy sessions held in chambers. The members of chambers who contribute to the programme are available to assist all pupils with preparation for the first days on their feet during their first six, and then into second six with developing advocacy towards Crown Court hearings.
The programme is based around advocacy exercises focusing on hearings in the Magistrates and Youth Courts allowing experience to be gained in a safe environment as to practice, procedure and advocacy style itself. There is the opportunity for regular and ongoing feedback from a group of members of chambers who will provide consistency in support and development of the pupils own advocacy style.
The sessions also cover ethic queries, GDPR and legal updates. There is input from more senior pupils. In second six we focus on PTPH hearings, preparing defence statements, use a mock Crown Court trial exercise allowing for targeted work on witness handling, half-time submissions, speeches and the sentencing process.
The programme aims to establish an environment for learning without fear of asking a ‘silly question’ so that our pupils can indeed be the best they can be on their feet, and continue to develop those skills throughout pupillage.