An Interview with Arthur Sutton – The President of Essex Bar Society!

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a final year law student, with a keen passion for advocacy and litigation. After winning the Mooting Competition at the Supreme Court last year, followed by the creation of the Bar Society, I have chosen a career in the Bar and hope to become a barrister in the future. My love for litigation comes from my work experience at a law firm in Kuala Lumpur, where I had the opportunity to work with and watch barristers speak in the Court of Appeal and Federal Court. I personally wish to specialise in Criminal litigation.

Arthur at the Supreme Court, March 2020.

How did you get involved in the Bar Society?
I established the Bar Society this year to accommodate students with an interest in the Bar. After being elected Vice-President of the Law Society, I felt there also needed to be a Bar Society to balance the level of support given to aspiring solicitors with support for aspiring barristers. During my first 2 years at Essex there was little to no support afforded to students interested in the Bar which, I feel, pushed a lot of students down the solicitor route. The Bar has become an alien concept to many students, therefore with the creation of this new Bar Society I am hoping that students will be equipped with as much knowledge about the Bar as possible before choosing their career path.

What do you enjoy/ or what are you looking forward to the most about being the President of Essex Bar Society?
I am looking forward to holding events that will connect barristers, bar students and professionals in the field of law to Essex students and bridge a pathway for students to use when they pursue a career in the law. I also hope to inspire many law students who have a love for advocacy and litigation to pursue a career as a barrister!

Tell us about a funny experience with the Bar Society
In our first event of the year, which I was hosting on zoom, in the middle of my opening speech, my internet crashed, and I was logged out of zoom. Thinking I had sabotaged the whole call, I ran down and told all my flatmates to switch their wifi off immediately. My internet was down for a good 10 minutes before I was finally able to log back on and re-join the call. Luckily, my secretary had took control as host and continued the event as normal.

What is your favourite thing about the School of Law?
My favourite thing about the School of Law is the amount of extracurricular activities you can get involved with as a law student. These include Client Interviewing, Negotiation, and a Mooting competition where I had the opportunity to speak in front of Lord Justice Wilson of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom. There is also a fantastic Law Clinic, which I have recently become a member of, that conducts many outreach programmes to deliver justice to the people that need it the most.

What do you hope to do once you graduate?
I hope to embark a Bar Course with a scholarship from an Inn of Court and in a few years, gain a pupillage at a Criminal Set.

How can Students get involved with the Bar Society?
Simply go on the Essex Student Union website and look for the Bar Society where you can get your membership completely free of cost. If you get in contact with me personally (as17565@essex.ac.uk, I can also add you to our WhatsApp group and link you to our Facebook and Instagram pages.

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