Katie Ayres has been named as the winner of this year’s Gray’s Inn Moot Competition and the Three Raymond Buildings Du Cann Memorial Prize for Excellence in Advocacy.
Richard Du Cann QC was one of the foremost advocates of his generation, a student and later a Master of the Bench of Gray’s Inn. He practised from these Chambers for 40 years. He died in August 1994 and an award was set up in his honour.
For the first 10 years, the prize of £1,500 was known as the Du Cann Memorial Prize for Excellence in Advocacy. It was administered by the ICSL and awarded annually to the student obtaining the highest aggregate mark in the Advocacy Assessments on the Bar Vocational Course.
Since 2008, Three Raymond Buildings has associated its award with the Gray’s Inn Moot Competition.
Hugo Keith QC, also a Master of the Bench of Gray’s Inn, presented Ayres with the annual prize of a cheque for £1,500 plus a copy of Richard Du Cann’s book, The Art of the Advocate.
Ayres graduated from Worcester College, Oxford, in 2009 with a degree in philosophy, psychology and physiology. After a year of travel, she worked as an investment banking analyst at NM Rothschild & Sons in the City. She converted to law at BPP in Manchester last year, where she achieved a distinction in the GDL. She was awarded a major GDL scholarship and the Denise Pannick Award for the BPTC, and this year Gray’s Inn also awarded her an internship scholarship to enable a team of six Inn students to participate in the Willem C Vis International Arbitration Moot in Vienna.
Ayres is currently studying the BPTC and is due to commence pupillage at Exchange Chambers in Manchester in October 2014.