Westminster Legal Policy Forum

The future for the legal education and training framework

Morning, Thursday, 8th November 2018

Central London


This seminar will focus on the future for legal education and training.

It is scheduled as the Solicitors Regulation Authority moves forward with the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE), and will bring together key regulators with industry stakeholders to consider the next steps for development of the examination, looking in particular at the remaining challenges for testing and implementing a fully operational test by 2020. It also comes as the Bar Standards Board looks at enforcing new regulations for the Future Bar Training and the authorisation framework for future ways to qualify as a barrister from Autumn 2018.

Sessions are expected to focus on the implications for access to the profession - including the future development and use of alternative routes to qualification - as well as what more the framework can do to meet the skills needs of an evolving legal services market and next steps needed to further improve diversity in the legal sector. Other areas for discussion include the impact of technology on the delivery and scope of legal training, and of Brexit on the number of foreign students and practitioners in England and Wales.

This conference is expected to bring together policymakers, law firms, chambers and legal businesses, universities and training providers, advocacy groups, academics, and commentators, along with reporters from national and trade media.

Guest of Honour

Julie Brannan

Director of Education and Training, Solicitors Regulation Authority

Guest of Honour

Julie Brannan

Director of Education and Training, Solicitors Regulation Authority

Keynote Speakers

Chris Nichols

Head of Regulatory Performance, Legal Services Board

Professor Elwen Evans QC

Head of the College of Law, Swansea University


Vanessa Davies

Director General, Bar Standards Board

Vicky Purtill

Director of Authorisation and Supervision, CILEx Regulation

Professor Andrea Nollent

Vice Chancellor, The University of Law

Robert Bourns

Chair, Law Society Board, The Law Society

Senior speaker confirmed from Allen & Overy

Benjamin Burns

Policy Analyst, Education and Training, Bar Council

Catherine Baksi

Freelance Legal Affairs Journalist and Author, Legal Hackette’s Brief

Mary Bonsor

Co-Founder, F-LEX

Charlotte Hart

Learning and Development Manager, Mayer Brown

Caroline Newman

Chief Executive Officer, LawdaCity and Founder, African Women Lawyers’ Association