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Three North West UK law firms to offer articled apprenticeships

Scheme has been developed to enable solicitors to 'earn while they learn'

22 June 2015

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A pioneering legal apprenticeship programme has been adopted by three law firms in the North West of England and North Wales.

The scheme, which aims to open up the profession to a greater number of talented candidates, has been developed by the University of Law (ULaw).

The programme aims to provide an alternative route to qualification as a solicitor for those who want to 'earn while they learn'.

"We expect the scheme to appeal to school leavers who do not wish to rack up student debt while at university, but also to people considering a change of career who can make the transition while still earning a salary," said Carol Draycott, centre director at ULaw.

"The big issue in the legal profession is employability because there is such strong competition to secure training contracts with firms. This programme provides successful candidates with a period of recognised training as well as study."

Successful candidates will be employed by the firms throughout the six-year apprenticeship, while studying ULaw's part-time LLB course in Chester, a qualifying law degree approved by the Bar Standards Board and Solicitors Regulation Authority.

"The traditional full-time university route is not for everyone and this pioneering scheme offers a fantastic alternative route to becoming a solicitor," said Richard Burnett, a partner at Hillyer McKeown.

Hillyer McKeown, which has offices in Chester, Wirral and North Wales, was the first firm to adopt the new articled apprenticeship scheme. It has now been joined by two other firms in the region, Rowlinsons and Gamlins Law.

Manju Manglani is editor of Managing Partner

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