The Ashfords Training Contract

Ashfords is recognised nationally as a leading provider of legal and related professional services. We deliver commercially focused advice to our clients across a range of industries and sectors. Our aim is straightforward – to help our clients get the results that they want. Our commitment to excellence is reflected by the quality of our staff and partners, our client testimonials and industry awards. We are also delighted to have been voted a Guardian UK 300 employer by students and graduates in the UK for the third year running.

Our three core divisions – commercial services, real estate and infrastructure and private client – cover a wide range of practice areas, including corporate, commercial property, dispute resolution, projects, local government, employment, intellectual property, information technology, trusts and estates, family, residential property and equity release. We have a wealth of experience in the specific sector areas of technology, waste, energy and resource management, local government, and bulk commodity services and, through our ADVOC network of independent law firms, we have experts in more than 60 countries across the world.

Who should apply?

There is no magic recipe for the perfect Trainee; however, at Ashfords there are characteristics that we value. We are looking for individuals who have ambition, are business savvy and who are never afraid to put forward innovative ideas. We need excellent communicators who are adaptable and ready to accept the variety of challenges that a career in law can throw at you.

At Ashfords, we are committed to a 'recruit to retain' policy which is demonstrated by our consistently high retention rates. We want our Trainees to be our Partners of the future.

Your Training Contract

You will experience four areas of law during your training contract, spending six months getting to grips with each department. You have a choice of either a Bristol-based or a South West-based training contract. Our South West trainees will have the opportunity to work across our Exeter, Taunton and Plymouth offices. We also offer flexibility for trainees to complete a seat in another office if the opportunity arises, including London.

As an Ashfords trainee, you will experience first-hand the work of a commercial law firm. We offer the opportunity of hands-on experience, early responsibility and client involvement. To make sure that everything is on track you will meet with your supervisor during each seat to monitor your development. You will also have a mentor to provide personalised support and give you the opportunity to discuss all those burning questions. Our trainees also play an integral role in our CSR programme and business development and marketing events, which provide exposure to our diverse client base. 

In addition to a comprehensive induction to the firm, the dedicated Learning and Development Team will support you through your mandatory PSC training, as well as providing a variety of client focused and soft skills courses, underpinning and complementing your on-the-job training. It is not all work though… You will have the chance to get involved in a number of social activities ranging from the annual ball, to sports clubs and charity fundraising events. Our Trainees know that if there is not already a club or activity available, all they need to do is take the initiative to create one! As an example, Ashfords' Trainees set up XYBC (Exeter Young Business Club) to encourage inter-profession social and networking activities across the local young professional community.

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