Become a Trainee Solicitor - Law Training Contracts in Bristol

We understand that choosing where to undertake your training as a Solicitor is a huge decision. That’s why it’s so important that you consider your options and think carefully about the type of firm you want to train with, alongside the areas of law that interest you the most.

Applications for 2022 training contracts are now closed.

Why choose Barcan+Kirby for your training contract?

In line with our aim to nurture and ‘grow our own’ talent, we are looking for trainees who will fit with the culture and values of our firm, and who will strive to develop and remain with us long term.

You’ll be actively encouraged to participate in marketing and business development activities, and we provide structured training and development opportunities, such as our Associates Academy and Staff Development Programme.

Achieving a healthy work-life balance is also important, so you’ll have the chance to get involved in activities outside of your day job, such as fundraising for our designated charity or joining one of our committees.

We’re committed to making Barcan+Kirby a positive and inclusive place to work.


What can Barcan+Kirby offer me?

When you join us, we can offer you hands-on legal experience across four different seats, as well as an inclusive and supportive environment where you can really thrive.

We also offer Trainees a range of benefits, including:

  • A minimum of 25 days’ holiday per year
  • Holiday purchase scheme
  • Employer pension contribution of 4.5%
  • Discretionary bonuses
  • Access to a 24/7 GP, counselling, second medical opinions and treatment sourcing through our Employee Assistance Programme
  • Discounted legal services
  • Flexible/agile working
  • Hybrid working
  • Summer and Christmas socials
  • Access to the firm’s bespoke Management Training Programme

Read more about the benefits of joining us here.

Hear from our past and present Trainee Solicitors

Want to know a bit more about what it’s like to train as a Solicitor with us? Read some of our Trainee Solicitor stories, or watch the video below for an insight into life as a trainee at Barcan+Kirby.

What are we looking for in our Trainee Solicitors?

At Barcan+Kirby, our Trainee Solicitors are an important part of our future. We see our trainees as possible future Partners in the firm. We look for qualities of intelligence, ability to think laterally and objectively, resilience, ability to get things done, to get on with people, and have great teamwork skills.

While academic ability is important, it is not the be all and end all, and experience is equally important. Generally, we will look for people with the right type of experience in the right type of firm.

Many of our successful Trainee Solicitors will usually have had some months or years of paralegal experience behind them so they can hit the ground running, but this is not essential.

To become a Trainee Solicitor, we require you to have:

  • A degree (in Law, or another subject plus GDL)
  • Successfully completed the Legal Practice Course (LPC)

Start your training contract application now

If you don’t yet have the above qualifications, it’s worth checking out our Summer Vacation and Work Experience programmes.

What can I expect during my law training contract?

Each year, the firm offers a small number of candidates (up to four) the role of Trainee Solicitor. Trainees are supported and supervised by experienced lawyers throughout the contract, many of whom are leading practitioners in their field.

Trainees are given an advanced level of responsibility from day one, and we consider our trainees to be integral members of our teams, undertaking real work for real clients from the outset.

Four training seats

Our training contracts consist of four seats, rotating every six months. We will discuss your interests and preferences and, where possible, we will do our best to accommodate this alongside the needs of the business.

A training contract at Barcan+Kirby will include seats in the following areas of law:

Throughout the training contract, trainees complete a weekly training record and undertake regular meetings with their trainee supervisor. At the end of each year, trainees meet with the Training Principal to discuss their experiences of the training programme and provide their feedback.

In addition, trainees are provided with the opportunity to join the firm-wide mentoring programme to assist with the development of more defined skills such as networking or presentation skills.

As part of the Trainee Solicitor programme with Barcan+Kirby, trainees are expected to take responsibility for the arrangement and completion of the Professional Skills Course (PSC). The PSC is to be undertaken and completed prior to the end date of your training contract.

Upon the successful completion of the two-year programme, the firm will assist with your application for admission to the role of Solicitor.

Blog | Training as a solicitor during a pandemic

The Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE)

The Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE) was introduced in September 2021 and is the new route to qualifying as a Solicitor.

How does the SQE affect Trainee Solicitors?

It is likely that our first intake of trainees who have completed the SQE will join us in September 2024. We will update the application process for our training programme to meet the new standards in due course.

The new programme is being designed for candidates who have completed their Solicitor Qualifying Examination 1 (SQE 1) and want to progress to become a fully qualified Solicitor.

The SQE Trainee Solicitor Programme will last for two years and provide immediate, direct exposure to a range of live cases. It will allow budding solicitors to gain invaluable experience in a number of departments and you will complete the required Qualifying Work Experience (QWE), whilst sitting the Solicitors Qualifying Exam 2 (SQE 2).

Throughout the programme, trainees will be assisted and trained in a wide variety of practice areas. Each Trainee Solicitor will have one-to-one mentoring from senior colleagues and a supportive team in each department.

Upon the successful completion of the Solicitors Qualification Programme, we hope to place the trainee in a qualified role. All available positions are advertised internally prior to the completion of the two years’ qualifying experience.

How to apply for a training contract

Applications for 2022 training contracts are now closed. We will announce details and dates for our 2023 Trainee Solicitor programme here and on our social media pages.

Further information

Not found the answer to your question? You can find more information on our Training Contract FAQs page. Alternatively, you can call us on 0117 325 2929 or fill out our online enquiry form.

To find out more about what life at Barcan+Kirby is really like, watch our short video.