5 Essex Court currently has 38 members, including seven silks and is a specialist civil chambers. It is ranked in Chambers and Partners as a leader in police law. Members of chambers appear in the great majority of significant cases and public inquiries and inquests concerning police forces.
In addition, chambers has a highly successful Public Law Team and thriving Employment, Personal Injury and Licensing Teams. Individual members have successful practices in a variety of other areas including immigration, insolvency, commercial, professional negligence, and landlord and tenant. A high proportion of members of chambers are Treasury Counsel.
Recent notable inquiries and inquests in which our barristers have been involved include the Leveson Inquiry, the Rodney Inquiry, the Billy Wright Inquiry, the Rosemary Nelson Inquiry, the Baha Mousa Inquiry, the Hutton Inquiry, and the inquests into the death of Princess Diana and the 7/7 bombing victims. Recent notable cases include the Royal Wedding protests, the extraditions of Babar Ahmad and Abu Hamza and others, the MPs expenses cases, and cases concerning stop and search and the retention of DNA, photographs and other material by the police. Members of chambers are currently involved in litigation flowing from the Hillsborough disaster, the murder of Lynette White, and the murder of Daniel Morgan. Pupils are involved in these sorts of cases from the very beginning of their pupillages and often go on to be instructed as juniors when they are on their feet.
Chambers offers a well-established pupillage programme which aims to develop the key skills required to succeed at the Bar. This commitment to our pupils is reflected both in the structure of pupillage and in the excellent retention rate of our pupils as tenants. Chambers also prides itself on providing pupils with a safe, friendly and constructive environment in which to learn and begin their practices. This is reflected in Chambers’ in-house advocacy training and a unique weekly talks programme designed to introduce pupils to our areas of work as well as life at the Bar.
5 Essex Court looks to recruit up to two pupils each year of outstanding calibre. Applicants should be able to demonstrate good intellectual ability as well as a commitment to our core practice areas. Our pupils receive a minimum of £40,000 during their pupillage year, comprising a £25,000 award and £15,000 guaranteed earnings.
Chambers aims to recruit members from its pupils, and is not therefore currently recruiting third six pupils (and has not done so for many years).