9SJS Access Award

Becoming a barrister can be tough, even more so if there are aspects of your life that make you feel that you cannot dedicate significant time and resources to your CV. We understand that mini pupillages and judicial marshalling can be expensive and time consuming. If you have a full-time job or caring responsibilities they are not easy to complete. The Bar can seem like a closed shop, especially if you do not know any barristers or even anyone in the legal profession.

A commitment to promoting equality and diversity at the Bar as well as taking pro-active steps to support and encourage social mobility are incredibly important to us. We want to encourage as many people as possible, from a variety of different backgrounds, to consider the Bar as a viable career choice. To that end, we are delighted to be able to launch the 9SJS Access Award.

Applications for our Access Award closed on 31st January 2021.

Chambers has been overwhelmed by the response to the 9SJS Access Award. We would like to thank each and every candidate who applied. We were incredibly impressed by the exceptionally high standard of applications we received which made the shortlisting process very difficult. We have shortlisted ten candidates for interview and would ask all applicants to check their email inboxes (and spam/junk folders). Chambers hopes to be able to offer the Award again later this year. Keep your eyes on our social media and website for future announcements.

We hope to offer another Access Award later in the year, details of which will be announced on our website and social media platforms.


9SJS Access Award Flyer


9SJS Access Award Advert


9SJS Access Award Diversity Questionnaire


The 9SJS Access Award gives the successful candidate the following opportunities:

  • A mini-pupillage with Chambers at date to suit the candidate (between 2-5 days) with reasonable travel expenses covered;
  • Shadowing a Judge with reasonable travel expenses covered;
  • A 121 advocacy coaching session with a Barrister;
  • A CV and application clinic with a Barrister (not to include specific tips on our pupillage application process);
  • A conversation with a Senior Clerk
  • A conversation with a Queens Counsel (QC); and
  • A dedicated mentor from our Chambers for a year ( this will not include assistance with applying to our Chambers for pupillage).

In honour of our colleague and valued member of Chambers, Mr Simon Temple, successful candidates will also receive the Memorial Temple Bursary of £250.00.

Winners of the Award will be able to select which opportunities they would like to participate in.

Wherever possible, the above opportunities will be offered remotely.

For the mini-pupillage and judicial shadowing, reasonable travel expenses will be covered.

Applications for the 9SJS Access Award are open to anyone who, at the date of their application, are aged 16 and over.

If you have a pupillage offer and/or have started pupillage at the time of the deadline for applications (31st January 2021) you will be ineligible to participate in the scheme.

To apply, we would like you to answer the following questions in no more than 500 words:

1. Is diversity important to the Bar?
2. Why should you be the recipient of the 9SJS Access Award?

It is up to you how you split the word count. However, you must state on your application the number of words you have used. Applications which exceed the 500 word limit will be instantly disqualified.

We are able to receive applications by email, or by verbal or video recording.

Please send your application including your name and age to access@9sjs.com by 5pm on 31st January 2021.

  • Answers to the questions in no more than 500 words total
  • Your word count
  • Your full name
  • Your age
  • Your email address
  • A contact telephone number
  • If you would like to, we would also invite you to complete and return our Equality & Diversity Questionnaire.

We are able to receive applications before the deadline to access@9sjs.com by:

  • Written email
  • Verbal recording
  • Video recording

Your application will be marked against the following criteria:

  • Focus/relevance: has the question been answered (10)
  • Persuasiveness (30)
  • Personal relevance (can the candidate draw from personal experience to explain/justify their answer) (40)
  • Style (20)

After the deadline, applications will be reviewed and scored by members of our Chambers.

A shortlist of ten candidates will be invited to an online interview.

The winner will be notified by email as soon as possible after the last interview has taken place.

The deadline for applications is 5pm on 31st January 2021.

Regrettably we will not be able to provide any feedback on applications or online interviews.

We are asking applicants to complete an Equality & Diversity Questionnaire. This is optional and will remain anonymous. The data collected will not form any part of scoring the applications. By returning the Questionnaire you are consenting to us using your data in accordance with our Data Protection Policy which you can find here.

If we can offer any reasonable adjustments to the application process please just let us know by email to amy.smith@9sjs.com at least 5 clear working days before the deadline of 31st January 2021.

All ten candidates who are invited to the online interviews will be asked in advance to confirm any reasonable adjustments which we could make.

Similarly, we will endeavour to accommodate any reasonable adjustments for the winner to fulfil all of the available opportunities.

Wherever possible the opportunities available will be offered remotely.

We understand not everybody will be able to attend in person or travel at this time. We are committed to working collaboratively and pro-actively with our Access Award winners to ensure they get as much out of the Award as is possible.