I have thoroughly enjoyed my week at Matrix and have learnt so much more than I expected to. The week started off fast-paced and on Tuesday, we went to Westminster’s Magistrates Court with Mark Summers QC to watch a hearing regarding an extradition case in which we were able to see a brief summary from both the prosecution and defence, which was helpful as it enabled us to follow an otherwise complicated case. The following day, we headed down to the Royal Courts of Justice to oversee a sentencing with Sara Mansoori in a defamation case in which the judge was deciding the amount of damages to be awarded to the claimant. On Thursday, we went down to the Old Bailey and managed to watch a high-profile attempted murder trial and were able to see the prosecution presenting their case. This involved watching CCTV footage and evidence and his questioning of a witness. On Friday, we were back at Westminster to watch another extradition case involving Aaron Watkins and were able to sit in on a meeting he had with his client. During the week, we were also given the opportunity to sit down and talk with Aidan Wills, a trainee and Angeline Welsh, who until recently worked as a solicitor and so was the perfect person to question about the two different routes into law. It has been a pleasant surprise to see just how approachable and helpful all the barristers I have met this week have been and how willing they have been to answer all our questions and give us advice on joining the legal sector.
Another thing I have learnt during my week is that chambers is much more than an office full of barristers, something made evident by the time I got to spend with the different teams in Matrix. We talked to Sara on Marketing, Eric from Fees and Finance, Amy from Team M, Sandra from Facilities and Aoife who works as part of the Legal Support team and were able to learn so much more about their individual roles and how they contribute to the overall business. Throughout the week, we were set varying tasks from the different teams and received very helpful feedback. We also spent a lot of time with the hilarious Katrina, who was lovely enough to escort us around to the different courts/get lost with during the week.
This whole week has been very interesting and educational and there has not been a single day when I have been left bored with nothing to do. This experience has answered many questions I had regarding a career in law and has also given me a first-hand glimpse into all the work that happens behind the scenes of a big court trial. I would not hesitate to recommend Matrix as the perfect place to apply for some work experience, as everyone was so friendly and our whole week was so well-organised by Natalie and Rachel who ensured that we got to see as many different aspects to working at Matrix as possible.