The Legal Cheek View

After a difficult 2016, which saw profit per equity partner (PEP) plunge by almost 20% and revenue fall 10%, Ashurst appears to be back on track. This year the firm announced a return to form, with PEP recovering by nearly 12% to hit £672,000 while revenue rose 7% to £541 million. There’s a newfound buzz around the place, heightened by excitement at the firm’s forthcoming to move into a fancy new office in the Spitalfields area of the City of London in 2019. “I've heard great things about the new building!” one trainee tells us.

Although Ashurst now sits within the global megafirm bracket following its 2012 merger with Australian outfit Blake Dawson – which has given it a major presence in Asia – in London its ‘silver circle’ roots remain. To translate the jargon: Ashurst has a strong finance speciality built around a slightly gentler culture to a magic circle firm.

That helps to support A-grade training and, once you are ready to handle it, desirable work. Trainees report being “rarely given dogsbody work” and often being “given a high level of responsibility”. But also note that “ironically, in the more technical departments the work can be less stimulating”. The firm’s Glasgow office is on hand, though, to do much of the volume work.

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Key Info

Training contracts 45
Latest trainee retention rate 95%
Offices 25
Countries 15
Minimum A-level requirement AAB
Minimum degree requirement 2:1

Insider Scorecard

Quality of work
Peer support
Partner approach-ability
Work/life balance
Social life

Insider Scorecard Grades range from A* to D and are derived from the Legal Cheek Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey 2017-18 of over 2,000 trainees and junior associates at the leading law firms in the UK.


Average arrival time 9:11am
Average leave time 7:39pm
Annual target hours 1,600
Annual leave 27 days


First year trainee salary £42,000
Second year trainee salary £46,000
Newly qualified salary £72,000
Profit per equity partner £672,000
GDL grant £8,000
LPC grant £8,000


UK female associates 52%
UK female partners 19%
UK BME associates Undisclosed
UK BME partners Undisclosed

Universities Current Trainees Attended

The Firm In Its Own Words