The Bar Council has extended the pupillage application deadline for a second time after disastrous new website Pupillage Gateway stopped working again today...
The deadline is now Thursday 9 May at 5pm. Earlier this week, the deadline was extended for the first time due to the same technical problems.
The Bar Council has issued the following statement:
"The Bar Council has extended the deadline for submission of pupillage applications via the Pupillage Gateway to 17:00 on Thursday 9 May.
"We are aware that the performance of the Pupillage Gateway in recent days has been wholly unacceptable. Following investigation by the Bar Council and its supplier, it is clear that the system has been unable to cope with the volume of users. The slow responsiveness of the site has not been remedied to a satisfactory level, despite a server upgrade earlier this week.
"Our supplier has been working non-stop to resolve these issues. Whilst many have successfully submitted their applications, others have experienced difficulties. We are further extending the deadline because we are determined that no applicants will be adversely affected as a result of the system's shortcomings.
"Applicants should use all of the extended period to work on and submit applications rather than leave submission entirely to the end of the extended period."
The news will be a relief to wannabe barristers, who this afternoon became understandably rather anxious...
There are more angry comments about today's problems on our previous Pupillage Gateway post.
This isn't, of course, the first time that there have been problems with the pupillage application system. Pupillage Gateway's hopeless predecessor, Pupillage Portal, went into meltdown in the run up to application day in three out of four of its miserable years of existence. Going back a bit further, New Statesman legal correspondent David Allen Green (aka Jack of Kent) recalls similar chaos 15 years ago.
When you set your standards as low as Pupillage Portal (the recently-retired pupillage application website), it doesn't take much to come up with an improvement. Sadly, this seems to be the philosophy guiding the development of its replacement, Pupillage Gateway.
OK, it's not quite that bad. But it's bad...
Hopefully the highly unimpressive-looking – and error riddled – temporary version of Pupillage Gateway that is currently online will be improved upon considerably when it is launched in "February 2012" (I think the Bar Council means February 2013). But I wouldn't hold your breath.
Last night’s speech by incoming Bar Council chair Maura McGowan QC was full of diplomatic turns of phrase. But make no mistake, it contains some strong warning messages to rookie barristers hopeful of pursuing careers in publicly-funded areas...
Error-prone pupillage application website Pupillage Portal is to be put out of its misery – and replaced with a new site called 'Pupillage Gateway' from March next year.
Released: Bar Barometer, trends in the profile of the Bar [Bar Council]
Internet access is a right, judges rule [The Telegraph]
But...internet access is not a 'human right' – for perverts or anyone else [The Telegraph]
Fantastic spoof lawyer website [bobduljohnsonattorneyatlaw.biz]
Man who put cat in tumble drier jailed [The Independent]
Intern just happens to be beautiful 22-year-old woman [The Onion]
Female genital mutilation: time for a prosecution [The Guardian]
DLA Piper puts 251 in consultation across UK as firm mulls Glasgow closure [The Lawyer]
Unpopular Twitter accounts could escape prosecution for 'grossly offensive' tweets [The Telegraph]
Amid the mutual back-slapping at Saturday's 27th annual Bar conference, there was gossip, intrigue and subversive humour – much of which was relayed to the world via Twitter by the hordes of smartphone-bearing attendees...
Legal Cheek has obtained records that show the names of 15 law firms which have failed to pay a junior criminal barrister a combined £4,931.82 in fees.
The barrister in question has been chasing the money for four years. So we decided to see if the threat of being named and shamed on Legal Cheek would focus the firms’ minds. This is what happened...
A story has been doing the rounds on Twitter and in the Blogosphere over the weekend about an award apparently given to law student suicide bomber Hanadi Jaradat by the Palestine Committee of the Arab Lawyers Union.
Jaradat (pictured) killed 21 people and injured 51 when she blew herself up in the Israeli city of Haifa in 2003 weeks before she was due to qualify as a lawyer.
If correct, the story – first reported in detail on Thursday on the website of Israel-based NGO Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) – could prompt responses from the Law Society and The Bar Council, which share membership of a number of international legal organisations with the Arab Lawyers Union (ALU).
There was widespread disbelief earlier this year when, for the first time in its three-year history, Pupillage Portal didn’t go down in the run up to the April 26 pupillage application deadline.
And there was more shock today when the site – which is rumoured to have been designed by Lord Neuberger during an introduction to the internet class – kept working as chambers made their pupillage offers.
But in facilitating this impressive outcome, the elite team of operatives responsible for maintaining Pupillage Portal let a couple of other things slip...
Last month Kearns Solicitors placed an advert in Counsel magazine seeking LPC and BPTC graduates to work as "court advocates". Applicants who got through the CV and cover letter sift were invited to complete a gruelling four-page test – available here – within seven days.
When a Bar graduate (who contacted me anonymously last week) completed the test – and passed – she got this response...