Firms join forces to teach new skills course

FIVE London law firms have formed a consortium with Churchill College, Cambridge, in a joint venture designed to provide teaching for the new Professional Skills Course.

The consortium, which includes Penningtons, Clyde & Co, Davies Arnold Cooper, Frere Cholmely Bischoff and Sinclair Roche & Temperley, was validated by the Law Society to run course modules from September.

The 67 trainees taken on by the firms in September will study the course's five modules – accounts, investment business, personal work management, professional conduct and advocacy and oral communication skills – at Churchill's Moller Centre.

Penningtons director of studies Jane Barham Carter says trainees will spend 20 days during the two-year contract studying the Professional Skills Course, with half of it completed through residential weekend study at Moller.

“We all wanted to have a very specific course which is designed for the sort of firms that we are and we were keen to do it in an environment that was conducive to study,” says Barham Carter.