East London Business Alliance [ELBA] mentees take part in Old Bailey Mock Trial

August 11, 2022

ELBA mentees participated in a mock trial at the Old Bailey in June 2022 where members of RLC volunteered as jurors and witnesses with the Recorder of London, HHJ Mark Lucraft QC presiding as Judge.

First Launched in October of 2019, the RLC/ELBA programme has seen monthly mentoring sessions with aspiring law students from universities in East London. The latest programme which began at the end of 2021 saw the inclusion of the first visually impaired student. Sessions have taken place following a syllabus which included practical experience of advocacy, personal confidence and communication skills training as well as regular 1-2-1 feedback from mentors. In addition, sessions allowed mentees to ask any questions they might have regarding journeys to the Bar and what the role of a practising barrister could entail.

The programme culminated with a Mock Trial at the Old Bailey where mentees were given the opportunity to showcase essential skills such as public speaking, critical thinking and the art of forming a persuasive, cohesive argument.

Ananya Mukherjee, aspiring Law student said:

“On 28th of July, I got the opportunity to role play as a barrister at the Old Bailey, thanks to East London Business Alliance and Red Lion Chambers. It was an exhilarating experience. I was nervous at first but got quite comfortable at one point of time. I now have a better understanding of how cases are heard in court. The case we prepared for was an exciting one albeit a bit hard to convince the jury as each and every student present there with me (in person and virtually) were absolutely marvellous doing their bits.

Most of all, I am grateful for my mentors Ms. Zoë Chapman and Ms. Hannah Willcocks QC and the knowledge they have imparted on me. The sessions with them have not only enlightened me on how to be a barrister, how much work they do, how busy they are and of course, how important they are but also how to be a better student, be more creative and prepare for the industry where I will soon find myself to be.

Not to forget, my partner through it all Abhishek Dhol who motivated and uplifted me through times when I was distressed. He has been no less an inspiration than our mentors and this experience have been!”

RLC members taking part in the Mock Trial included Michelle Nelson QC, Serena Gates, Zoë Chapman, Tim Kiely, Letitia Egan, Emily Matin (probationary tenant) with pupil barrister Grace Khaile and Joint Head of Chambers Tony Shaw QC.

ELBA mentees who took part include Ananya Mukherjee, Alexa Buathier-Philips, Zsofia Dara, Dana Altunisi (via CVP), Sofia Neves Silva, Sabah Salim Jetha, Abhishek Dhol (via CVP) and Muskaan Hiran (via CVP).

ELBA has been supporting the social and economic regeneration of East London for over 30 years. The charity works in partnership with business and the local community, including universities and schools, to build the capacity of local organisations and the community, harnessing the time, skills and expertise of volunteers.

RLC are the first Chambers to partner with ELBA, with a focus on education and employment. Mentors for the year long programme included Michelle Nelson QC, Alistair Fell, Aneurin Brewer, Tim Kiely, Michael Goodwin QC, Tom Davies, Anita Clifford, Nick Hall, Hannah Willcocks QC, Zoë Chapman, Riel Karmy–Jones QC, Caroline Baker, Gillian Jones QC, Sophie Quinton-Carter, Ed Renvoize and Francesca Kirby.

For more information on ELBA please see here: [ELBA]