Wedlake Bell is a great place to work. Our reputation attracts blue chip clients, household names and international brands. Our size ensures a friendly working environment with room to be noticed.
People thrive here because they work with great clients alongside bright people who genuinely take pleasure in what they do.
- believe in the importance of enjoying what you do
- cultivate a friendly, supportive and nurturing environment
- are committed to a healthy work-life balance
If you are interested in applying to Wedlake Bell LLP, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wedlake Bell is a “data controller” in respect of the personal data it collects and holds about you as part of the recruitment process. As a data controller, we are responsible for deciding (i) what data we collect; (ii) how we use it; (iii) how we store it; and (iv) when we delete it. Under GDPR, we are required to notify you of (i) to (iv). We have strict policies in place to prevent the loss, accidental destruction, misuse or disclosure of your personal data. For further information on the firm’s privacy notice, please click here.
Our approach is to recruit a small number of trainees so that each individual receives exceptionally high-quality training. Our aim is to ensure that, by the end of your training contract, you will be competent and confident newly qualified solicitors with a genuine enthusiasm for your work.
We are quick to recognise your talents and will provide you with an environment in which those talents can be utilised to their maximum potential. The effectiveness of our training scheme is demonstrated by the fact that a significant number of our current partners completed their training contracts at Wedlake Bell and have remained with us for the duration of their careers.
We are currently recruiting for an intake of eight trainees each year.
We recruit two years in advance of the commencement of the training contract.
How do I apply?
Applications for our 2025 Training Contracts will open on 1 November 2022. The deadline to submit your application is 23:59 on Wednesday 31 May 2023.
All applicants must have achieved (or expect to achieve) at least an upper class second for their undergraduate degree course.
To apply, you will need to:
- Complete the online application form – access the online application form and apply here.
- You will be asked to include a covering letter as part of the application.
For any questions and queries, please email email@example.com. Please contact Annabel Hale, Graduate Recruitment & Development Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have anything you would like to discuss.
Why Wedlake Bell?
As a medium-sized firm with an intake of eight trainees, Wedlake Bell offers trainees a supportive environment where they can thrive during their training.
Wedlake Bell trainees attend the firm’s ‘Foundation’ training programme which has been specifically developed for trainee solicitors to support their development during the first two years of the Training Contract.
‘Wedlake Bell stands out for the breadth and depth of matters you are entrusted with. The Partners and trainee supervisors are genuinely invested in supporting your development, whilst promoting an inclusive and supportive culture which ensures everyone has a healthy work-life balance.’
Zahra Shah, Trainee Solicitor
- Your Training Contract: Trainees complete four 6-month seats during their Training Contracts which will enable them to experience a large variety of work and explore different areas of Law. Wedlake Bell trainees attend the firm’s ‘Foundation’ training programme which has been specifically developed for trainee solicitors to support their development during the first two years of their career at the firm. Trainees are in regular contact with the HR team and Training Principal to discuss their progress and career development.
- Support: Trainees are paired up with a mentor and a Trainee Buddy to act as an additional support during their training contract and help them settle in. For each seat, trainees are allocated a dedicated supervisor who will oversee the trainee’s workload and provide feedback. Trainees complete a mid-seat and end of seat review to further their development during the seat. Before trainees join the firm, they take part in a Future Trainee series of events to prepare them for life at the firm.
- Benefits: The firm offers a range of benefits such as private healthcare and dental cover, a cycle to work scheme, wellbeing resources, annual travelcard, discounted gym memberships, 25 days of annual leave and a birthday day off. Wedlake Bell is very sociable and regular events such as mini-golf, theatre trips, an annual walking trip and ski trips are organised – the trainees are encouraged to make the most of firm life!
What is the selection process?
All applications are reviewed and selected candidates are invited to a first interview. The next stage includes some short written assessments, a networking lunch and a final interview.
The first-stage interviews will be conducted virtually in July. We plan to host the final stage interviews in person at our offices in London.
The graduate recruitment team will let you know whether you have been successful as soon as possible following each stage.
The interviews for Training Contracts will be held in July 2023. If you are selected for an interview, the graduate recruitment team will be in contact to confirm the details.
All offers for training contracts are subject to you passing the Legal Practice Course or SQE examinations at the first attempt.
Do you accept CVs in place of the application form?
No, all applications must be made by completing our online application form. Applications which are made by any other method will not be considered.
What is the closing date for applications?
The deadline to submit your application for 2025 Training Contracts is 23:59 on Wednesday 31 May 2023.
If you wish to add supplementary information to your application:
If you have submitted an application for this application round, you can’t change the application after submitting, however you do have access to a ‘Supplementary information’ section on your homepage where you can add additional details at any time after submission (academic and also work experience).
If you submitted an application last year, you may submit a new application for this year’s position.
Will my application be acknowledged?
Yes, we acknowledge receipt of all validly completed applications received by us on or before the application deadline. If your application has not been acknowledged within two weeks, please contact us at email@example.com.
If I am selected to attend an interview, will my travel costs be reimbursed?
Yes, Wedlake Bell will reimburse travelling expenses from within the UK and Ireland. A copy of your receipt is required and reimbursement will be paid by payment transfer. Unfortunately, we are unable to reimburse any expenses incurred if you travel back from a holiday to attend an interview.
Will I get paid?
We pay our trainees in accordance with current market rates in London. These are reviewed annually.
Will my LPC fees be paid?
LPC funding may be available subject to the terms of your offer. Wedlake Bell offers a £7000 maintenance grant for those who are yet to start or are currently completing the LPC. However, for 2025 Training Contracts, if you have not already begun the LPC, you will be asked to complete the SQE. Further details are below.
Solicitor’s Qualifying Exam (SQE)
The SQE was introduced by the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority (SRA) in September 2021 and will mean that all aspiring solicitors must pass two standardised exams as part of the new route to qualification. This has been introduced to ensure consistency and high standards across the legal industry.
Wedlake Bell will continue to support and offer high-quality training to our trainees throughout this transition.
The SQE is split in to two assessments; SQE 1 and SQE 2. SQE 1 focuses on functioning legal knowledge and SQE on practical legal skills and knowledge.
In addition to the assessments, you will also need to have an undergraduate degree, complete two years’ qualifying work experience and meet the SRA’s character and suitability requirements.
Further details on the SQE route can be found on the SRA’s website and we would recommend all candidates review this: https://sqe.sra.org.uk/
Will I need to sit the SQE?
If you started, accepted an offer or completed the LPC or (P)GDL before 1 September 2021 you are eligible to follow the transitional arrangements and qualify under the LPC route. This is also the case if you accepted an offer for a qualifying law degree by 21 September 2021.
Please note, the firm you choose to complete your training with may require you to follow the new SQE route to qualification from a set date.
The SRA have full details of the transitional arrangements on their website.
I’m a non-law student, what will the SQE route mean for me?
If you have already completed the (P)GDL you will be eligible to continue the LPC route to qualification or you can choose to complete the SQE.
If you are a non-law student and did not start the (P)GDL before 1 September 2021 you will need to complete the SQE route to qualification.
Non-law students should review the SRA’s transitional guidance.
What will Wedlake Bell’s approach for the SQE be?
Applicants for the 2025 training contract should bear in mind that they may be asked to complete the SQE qualification route. Wedlake Bell will offer financial support for the new qualification route, we will cover the costs of the preparation courses, exams and provide a maintenance grant of £7000. Alongside preparing you for the SQE exams, our course with the University of Law also includes an LLM qualification and will prepare you for life as a Trainee Solicitor at a City firm.
Wedlake Bell will be partnering with the University of Law for our SQE preparation courses. Future trainees will be able to select which campus they complete their studies at.
Wedlake Bell will be asking non-law students to complete the (P)GDL/PGDIP before beginning an SQE preparation course – funding and maintenance grants will be provided.
If you have already completed the LPC you will not need to take the SQE.
Wedlake Bell is committed to providing equal opportunities in employment. This means that all applicants will receive equal treatment regardless of the race, ethnic origins, religious beliefs, age, sex, marital status or sexual orientation of the applicant.