Mooting Skills students visit Manchester

For the second year running, fifty law undergraduates studying the Legal Skills module have visited Manchester's Civil Justice Centre, Crown Court and Magistrate Court as part of their Mooting Skills tuition.

Co-ordinated by Stephen Clear, Bangor Law School's Mooting Skills Coordinator, the purpose of the trip was to give first year students the opportunity to gain a practical insight into the advocacy skills of real-life barristers and solicitors. The trip was once again sponsored by BPP Law School, making the event free-of-charge to all first year students. Bangor Law students with their BPP Certificates of Commercial AwarenessBangor Law students with their BPP Certificates of Commercial Awareness

Accompanied by Dr Marie Parker, Part-Time Lecturer in Law, and Law Librarian Mairwen Owen, the group were firstly welcomed at Manchester and Salford's Magistrates Court by Kate Spencer, Head Usher. The group were given a tour of the facilities and afforded the opportunity to have a Q&A session with the Court Clerks, Ushers and Justices of the Peace. Students were thereafter invited to sit in on cases relating to assault, sexual offences, domestic violence, fracking protests and burglary.

At the Civil Justice Centre, the group were given a guided tour by Rose Shaw, Queens Bench Listing Officer. Students again had a chance to ask questions relating to the work of the Civil Justice Centre. Here the group were able to sit in on a case relating to contract law, and were given a private briefing in advance of the hearing with Northern Circuit Judge Nigel Bird, formerly of Kings Chambers.  

At Manchester Crown Court, the group were met by Court Manager Nicki Ryan's team and given an overview of the work of the Court. The Court Ushers gave students a tour of the facilities and each participant received information packs pertaining to Court services in the United Kingdom, details of criminal proceedings, as well as information relating to the history of the criminal justice system.

"The purpose of this visit was to afford students the opportunity to experience real life advocacy and courtroom etiquette first-hand. Students are then able to consider how they can adopt such insights into their submissions for their moot assessments", said Stephen Clear, commenting on the success of the visit. "This year, the addition of the Magistrates Court gave attendees the opportunity to see first-hand a more complete spectrum of advocacy styles", he added.

Later that afternoon, the group travelled to BPP's Law School on Oxford Road to complete the final stage of the Certificate of Commercial Awareness. Daniel Lister, Associate Solicitor at Weightmans LLP, and Caroline McCarron, Solicitor and Business Development Officer at JMW Solicitors LLP, delivered master-classes in commercial awareness, and gave students an insight into what their firms were looking for in terms of graduates of the future.

The visit concluded with all 50 students being awarded Certificates of Commercial Awareness by BPP Law School, and attending a networking reception with high street Solicitors, recent LPC and BPTC graduates and BPP Careers Advisors. 

Publication date: 26 February 2014