Why is nobody talking about this Friday’s Inns of Court scholarship deadline?

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£5 million in cash and rent-free flats in central London up for grabs, but publicity is minimal


There are just five days left for students to apply for a slice of a massive £5 million pot to sponsor the cost of becoming a barrister — but nobody is talking about this incredible giveaway.

Once again, the publicity given by the bar to the annual Inns of Court scholarship scheme has been minimal, with not so much as a press release issued by the Bar Council, the Bar Standards Board or the Inns of Court themselves.

Most of the Inns have at least posted tweets about the scholarships — which cover Bar Profession Training Course (BPTC) fees and living expenses — with Gray’s Inn the most prolific. BPP Law School has also flagged up the deadline on Twitter. But that’s about it. Which is pretty incredible when you think about how much money is up for grabs.

What other profession would allow such a crucial part of its supposedly pro-diversity entry system to go so under-publicised?

In such an environment of poor communication it is no surprise that Inner Temple awarded its top scholarship last year to the daughter of one of its benchers. And it is similarly unsurprising that diversity at the bar is so awful, with 79% of new tenants at the top 50 chambers having attended Oxbridge.

Why isn’t the message about Inns scholarships going beyond lawyers’ families and Oxford and Cambridge uni careers’ services?

Inns of Court scholarships are awarded by Inner Temple, Middle Temple, Gray’s Inn and Lincoln’s Inn. You can apply here, here, here and here.

The former duo take into account need as well as merit as they allocate some of their funds, while the latter judge on merit only. It’s also worth noting that Inner and Middle interview all candidates who apply.

Students may also be interested to know that some Gray’s Inn and Lincoln’s Inn’s scholarships include rent free flats for the year in the heart of legal London.

Finally, you do not have to be a member of an Inn to apply for a scholarship. Many undergraduates don’t realise this. You only have to join an Inn before starting the BPTC. So if you fancy a career at the bar, it’s definitely worth putting in an application.

There is more information about the scholarships in ‘8 things you need to know before applying for an Inns of Court scholarship’, which has been updated for 2015.



If you don’t know about them already, I’m afraid you probably don’t deserve one.


Roger the Dodger

What a lot of rot!



Another article dropping in the diversity clang.

Cue Not Amused to pop up in T minus 10…9….8….


Not Amused

This is why we need Legal Cheek.



This is completely wrong. I am non-Oxbridge and not from a dynasty of lawyers, yet I still knew about scholarships. If you do you research and go to your university’s Bar Society meetings, or speak to careers advisors at law schools (which I did when I started the GDL), they are all very aware of the importance of Inn scholarships.



People want everything done for them, and they want some one else to foot the bill. Welcome to 2015.



Agreed. Don’t forget they want everything instantly with minimal effort. Plus any failure is due to unfairness in the system.



“it is no surprise that Inner Temple awarded its top scholarship last year to the daughter of one of its benchers”

Oh lay off it, Alex. She earned the award fair and square through an honest selection system that her father played no part in.

If you have evidence that suggests otherwise, then present it.

Otherwise, shut up!


Knob Amused

This is why we don’t need Legal Cheek.



To be honest I read this the other day so it’s not like there’s nobody at all talking about it…



Nobody is talking about it because those applying for it want to keep it silent. The more publicity about it will increase the competition.



It is up to the relevant University Careers service to circulate the emails etc. Often they’re just as lazy as the students. Frankly, as a prospective BPTC student one really ought to be doing the research and coming across this information.

Secondly, what is with the constant Oxbridge line from Alex? Chip on shoulder much?


A grateful barrister

I bagged one of Gray’s top scholarships after someone at my (non-Oxbridge) Uni casually mentioned that the deadline was in 2 days time and I applied ‘on the offchance’, getting an interview shortly thereafter.

It paid for my whole BVC with cash left over and saved me having to take out a whopping big loan (no family dosh here!)

I was told, anecdotally, on a mini pupillage that a top scholarship is more or less a ‘ticket to pupillage’- and it was.

They weren’t very well publicised then and probably aren’t now.

All credit to LC for lifting the lid.



Can you apply for an Inns Scholarship before taking any action with regards to applying for a BPTC place, or does part of the application already require this to be lodged?



To my knowledge, there’s no need to have a place on the BPTC at the time you apply. May be different by the time you come round to interview.


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