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First barrister pupillage for Birmingham's council legal team.

Birmingham City Council has announced the appointment of its first pupil barrister.

Patrick Keith's 12-month pupillage, which is believed to be the only one currently being undertaken in local government, will be led by the city's legal head.

The first nine months of the pupillage will be undertaken within the Legal Services Department and will cover the whole spectrum of the legal work undertaken by the largest local authority legal department in the UK, and possibly Europe, with over 220 staff.

The final three months of the pupillage will be undertaken within St Philips Chambers, in Birmingham, which is an award winning multi-disciplinary set of chambers consisting of over 150 barristers and widely recognised as one of the most innovative and forward-looking chambers in the UK.

James Burbidge, the head of St Philips Chambers, said:"We are delighted to have been asked to assist Birmingham City Council in their innovative stance of offering a pupillage in local authority law by inviting Patrick to spend the final three months of his pupillage with us at St Philips.

"It enables us to share our training expertise with Birmingham City Council in this unique arrangement that recognises the special links between the City Council and St Philips Chambers."

Barrister and council legal chief Mirza Ahmad will be leading the pupillage. He said: "Following a national advertisement, Patrick competed against a very strong field of candidates with first or 2:I degrees, including many who had obtained 'very competent' grades in the Bar Vocational Course. I am sure, therefore, that Birmingham's pupillage will be an excellent one for him and, more importantly, a success for local government."

Patrick Keith said: "I am looking forward to commencing my pupillage and will do my level best to make this a success for Birmingham."
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 7, 2010
Words:297
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