I commenced my training contract at Blake Morgan in September 2018, prior to this I was a paralegal at the firm. During my training contract, I undertook seats in Real Estate, Commercial and Corporate.
My experience was generally a really positive one. I felt very lucky as I was given three seats that were all different to each other but gave a great overview of the key commercial practices at the firm and complimented the skills bases I had developed in the previous seats. In the Cardiff office, we were particularly lucky as there were always more seats available than there were trainees and the other trainees tended to always want differing seats, which worked great for me! Preference is given to second year trainees’ choices, as they have less time to qualification, which works well and is generally considered a fair approach.
Whilst the change of seats can often feel daunting, in each of my transitions my supervisor, as well as the junior lawyers in the team, were very accommodating in helping me prepare – which often meant telling me not to prepare too much and not to worry.
Throughout my seats I received a good quality of work and lots of great client contact. During my Real Estate seat, I worked with Canary Wharf plc in relation to their retail portfolio and assisted on various developments both in Cardiff and on a national level. In my Commercial seat, I regularly provided advice to various public sector bodies and assisted on various large-scale procurements. In my Corporate seat, I spent the majority of my time working on various merger and acquisition transactions, in particular one which was the sale of Health and Safety company in the tourism sector that contained a number of cross-border issues.
The firm has a wide formal support network including the trainee regional partner, mentoring scheme and trainee supervisors. However, there is lots of informal support around you as well from your colleagues, including partners in the office, who are all interested in making sure you get the best experience possible in each seat and in your training contract as a whole.