Trowers joins firms upping junior lawyer pay in the regions

By on

£60k base salary

Trowers & Hamlins has increased pay for its newly qualified (NQ) lawyers working in the Birmingham, Exeter and Manchester offices to £60,000. This an increase of £10,000, or 20%, from £50,000.

The firm’s London NQ rates are also on the up, £77,500 to £80,000.

Paul Marco, joint managing partner and head of dispute resolution at Trowers, commented: “In all our locations we strive to ensure that we’re on-market for our people. Other firms have also been pushing salaries up, and we have now landed in the right place for our NQs.”

Applications are open for the Legal Cheek September UK Virtual Law Fair 2022

The firm last increased pay at the beginning of the year which brought NQ rates in the regions and London to £50,000 and £77,500.

This is the latest rise as the NQ pay war has extended to the regions. Recently DLA Piper, Addleshaw Goddard and Shoosmiths have all seen rises to around the £60k mark, whilst Hogan Lovells currently tops the tables offering its Birmingham NQs £70,000.

Regional rises: how things stand…

Firm Trainee pay (Year 1) Trainee pay (Year 2) NQ base rate
Addleshaw Goddard Leeds and Manchester: £29,500; Scotland: £25,000 Leeds and Manchester: £32,000; Scotland: £28,000 Leeds and Manchester: £62,000; Scotland: £56,000
BCLP Manchester: £30,000 Manchester: £35,000 Manchester: £51,000
CMS Bristol: £41,500; Manchester and Sheffield: £30,000; Edinburgh and Glasgow: £26,775 Bristol: £42,525; Manchester and Sheffield: £33,075; Edinburgh and Glasgow: £29,925 Bristol: £61,000; Manchester and Sheffield: £51,750; Edinburgh and Glasgow: £51,750
DLA Piper All regional offices: £30,000 All regional offices: £33,000 All regional offices: £65,000
Eversheds Sutherland All regional offices: £28,500 All regional offices: £31,000 All regional offices: £62,000
Gowling WLG Birmingham: £29,000 Birmingham: £32,000 Birmingham: £52,000
Hogan Lovells Birmingham: £32,000 Birmingham: £35,000 Birmingham: £70,000
Pinsent Masons All regional offices: £27,000 All regional offices: £30,000 All regional offices: £61,000
RPC Bristol: £35,000 Bristol: £36,000 Bristol: £56,000
Shoosmiths Regions: £28,500; Edinburgh: £26,500 Regions: £29,500; Edinburgh: £27,500 Regions: £58,000; Scotland: £54,500; Thames Valley: £63,800
Simmons & Simmons Bristol: £40,500 Bristol: £42,500 Bristol: £68,000
Squire Patton Boggs All regional offices: £30,000 All regional offices: £33,000 All regional offices: £65,000
Trowers & Hamlins All regional offices: £30,000 All regional offices: £32,000 All regional offices: £60,000


Not bad

Trowers is, in my view, one of those under the radar firms. It’s not silver circle or magic circle but it’s not trying to be. I think 80k is good whack for the comfortable hours you’ll do here – I imagine it’s like a 9-6 gig. Also, looking at their alumni, especially in finance / corporate / projects, NQs/Juniors have moved to pretty reputable firms. Seems like a good stepping stone. Not saying getting a TC here is easier, but if you want to end up in the silver circle / US you can train here and aim to move post qualification – seems perfectly doable.


Regional Pay War Observer

Shoosmiths trainee pay is wrong.

They have increased to £31,000 (first year) and £33,000 (second year).

On another note, I imagine CMS will increase to at least 60k in the regions soon.


CMS insider

They have increased to 57k and refused to match rivals.





US Associate

Don’t understand why would you stay regional when you can make £100k more in London with much better experience. Hours in these kinda reputable regional firms aren’t light.



I live in Manchester City centre in a high rise apartment.

I pay 600 PCM and my apartment building has a gym, swimming pool, 2 cinema rooms, roof terrace and is a 5 minute walk from the office.
Granted, I live with my partner and so the total rent PCM is £1200.

Even NQs on 170k will not be living in apartments with those amenities which are a stones throw away from the office in London.

The hours are still significantly better than a US firm and I have my weekends.

Bottom line – 65k will give you a much better quality of life in a region than 100k in London.



Manchester swimming pool guy – so dependable!



So let’s get this straight, you live in the regions and yet still share a small 1 bed apartment with your partner? And are touting this as some kind of benefit? If you happened to live in a country house surrounded by acres of land you might have had us



I am a Bristol associate in one of the reputable firms (paying on the highest end of the Bristol market, for example). I have calculated and, post tax and pension, I’d be coming out with a decent amount more in London but I would also be paying far more in rent and would most likely also need to factor in a tube commute. I would also be working far more hours.

Right now I live 5 minutes walk from work, pay £690 sharing a city centre 1 bed with my partner (this is extremely expensive in Bristol) which has a gym and coworking space. I basically work 9 – 5/9 – 6, and have never had to cancel evening plans. I would never get that work life balance in London at a £100k+ firm.

All in all it is a move I am considering, but I’d have to put a lot of thought into it when considering the amount of hours worked and the living costs in London. At the end of the day, it isn’t just take home you need to consider – on a higher salary you can also pay off a student loan far more quickly and boost your pension significantly. Personally I’m mostly considering the move for the experience as there is definitely a boost in quality of work in London which I can’t deny. I have also noticed that Bristol firms (including my own) are now really struggling to attract and retain talent due to the fact that London firms pay far more now.


Diff view

I left Bristol to join a £100k+ London firm. Hours are the same (in fact they’re much more chill about billable targets), my commute is a 10-minute walk and my rent is £800/month for a nice place. Very good move for me personally.



Does it ever cross your mind that maybe people don’t spend their entire lives chasing every last penny? I mean, by your logic nobody should bother to be a City lawyer when you can make much more in IB.


Interested onlooker

What are BS, OC and TLT paying these days?



I’m at BS – BS NQ is £60,000, no rise as of yet from last year. There are a lot of grumblings within the firm and people are considering leaving if there isn’t an increase. Its good for regional, but BS touts itself as one of the top firms outside London and the firm is ultimately struggling to retain talent.

I have heard OC has risen, but nothing confirmed.


She Eh mEss (CMS)

Things at CMS couldn’t get any worse

juniors are not happy working donkey hours for crap pay.

Huge respect to Trowes for being sensible, 60k is the sweet spot.



I worked at CMS Glasgow – the team I was in got absolutely beasted, it was unbelievable. You were basically working London hours for Scottish pay.



I’ve just accepted a role at a firm paying just shy of £100k in London, with 2-3 days per week in the office so I can still live in Leeds (by staying over in London 1-2 nights per week)! I get a London salary that’s £30k higher than regions, for similar hours to a top firm in the regions, without moving house.



Assuming your firm isn’t paying your travel and accommodation, have you worked out how much of your post-tax take home you will end up spending on trains and hotels?

I did the maths when considering accepting a 2 days per week London role from Manchester, and it just didn’t make sense. And now, the current state of the trains makes it even less appealing.


Fellow Northerner

Agreed – assuming the London firm is not paying trains or accommodation in London it really begs the question whether it is worth it.

I could more than double my salary with a move to a London firm, but, the prospect of all the travel and costs, plus extra working hours, makes the extra take home not worth it for me.


NQ Curious

What are the NQ rates like down south? about to qualify and cannot even contemplate living anywhere near London!!!!!!!


Banker not a lawyer

Shut up and read this website if you want to know nq salaries Tom


Comments are closed.

Related Stories