This year we are offering three funded pupillages, one commencing in September 2017 and two in September 2018.

£20,000 will be paid to pupils for their first six, payments are staggered over 7 months. £17,500 in earnings is guaranteed over the second six period of the pupillage and is automatically paid to the pupil on a monthly basis.

We also provide a bursary to all of our pupils of £200 to contribute towards the cost of their gown and wig, this is a legacy from Jean Southworth QC, once a member of chambers and one of the first women ‘silks’ at the Bar.

At QEB Hollis Whiteman, pupillage is split into a ‘first six’ of six months, followed by an extended ‘second six’ of ten months, with the decision whether to take on a pupil as a tenant taken in January/February each year.

Pupils spend their first six months entirely in the company of their pupil supervisor.

The Bar is a stressful profession. In working closely with their pupil supervisor, the pupil will be involved in the problem solving, decision-making and advocacy that make up a barrister’s daily working life.

They will also be asked to give assistance to other barristers in chambers.  Not only does this help them but it enables the pupil to have their work seen by a wide selection of tenants.

Pupils will probably be at court almost every day during their first six.   As they approach their second six and their first brief, we ensure that pupils go to court with our most junior tenants, this allows them to watch the type of work that the pupil will soon be doing.

Throughout the first six, (having had a few weeks to settle in) we run an in-house course of advocacy classes for first six pupils, which are attended by barristers of all levels of seniority, including the Head of Chambers. These courses lead to a mock trial at the Old Bailey in March each year in front of Old Bailey Judges.  By the time this moment comes our pupils are fully prepared to take on anything!

The extended ‘second six’ at QEB Hollis Whiteman, from March to February of the following year, allows us to get to know pupils as well as possible and allows them the opportunity of building their practice before the decision as to whether their future lies within QEB Hollis Whiteman is taken.

Each successive generation of pupils provides valuable help and encouragement to their successors during the five months that their careers overlap.

Once pupils start their second six months they start fully to justify all the training they have done. They will be in court very soon and, if our recent pupils are an accurate guide, they are likely to be appearing in court four or five times a week.

The initial work they do will be in Magistrates’ Courts, then mentions and applications in the Crown Court. We would not allow our pupils to do a jury trial until very late into their training, and then only once their pupil supervisor certifies that they are ready and competent to do such a case.

Our pupils are always busy, however they should be aware that we cannot guarantee a level of work during this time. The Bar is a market profession, we depend on solicitors to send us work. They expect us to give them and their clients the highest quality of service. Our reputation within the Criminal Bar depends on our ability to do just that.

Before the start of pupillage we provide all our new pupils with our pupillage handbook which gives detailed information about life and pupillage at QEBHW.  New pupils are also invited for drinks with our current pupils for a ‘behind the scenes’ and realistic explanation.


This year we are recruiting outside the Pupillage Gateway.  

Click HERE to go to our application page.


  • 21 November - 2016 - The application form will be available via a link on the Pupil Application page.
  • 22 January - 2017 (Midnight) - Applications close. Applications received after this point will not be considered.
  • 11th and 18th March - 2017 - 1st round interviews
  • 8 April - 2017 - 2nd round interviews
  • Offers for Pupillage by 15 April - 2017.

Guide for applicants

As a general rule we offer four pupillages each year. At QEB Hollis Whiteman every application is assessed on its own merits. We do not place special emphasis on academic achievement. It is an important factor, but so are verbal communication and good judgement.

We do not normally offer ‘third six’ pupillages to new applicants, since we have found that they dilute the work opportunities available to second six pupils.

Applications for pupillage

Click here to go to our application page