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Investment in your future is important to us, because you are the key to ours.

At Ward Hadaway, we are committed to developing our trainees as tomorrow’s future lawyers and Partners. We’ve made that possible by creating a stimulating, supportive and rewarding environment across all three of our offices. This allows our trainee solicitors to maximise their real potential.

In addition to our top six reasons to begin your legal career with us, here’s what else you should know about our training contract:

Four seats

During your two-year training contract with us you will have the opportunity to complete four placements (known as seats) of six months each. These will take place within four of our eight departments: Corporate, Commercial, Commercial Dispute Resolution, Private Client, Employment, Health & Regulatory, Housing and Real Estate. Your seat choices are extremely important and we work with our trainees to ensure they get a broad experience of the firm, while also catering for your own personal ambitions and areas of interest.

You might also have an opportunity to work with one of our clients on a secondment basis. These are typically with our larger clients as part of their in-house legal team .

Training and support

The training contract begins with a two-week induction programme to introduce you to the firm, your first team, your fellow trainee solicitors and our systems and processes. This ensures you are fully prepared when you undertake your first seat.

Trainee/NQ buddy system

During the induction process you will be assigned a ‘buddy’, who will be a NQ solicitor. As someone who has recently completed their training contract, they will be ideally placed to offer support and guidance and answer any questions you may have. Once in your seat, you will work through a structured programme, perform real work and your mentor will oversee your development over the next six months. All the while, you will be provided with feedback through our regular reviews.

Ongoing training and development

Throughout the two-year training contract you will also receive a multitude of training and the opportunity to attend regular legislation update seminars, as well as soft skills development training.

Reward & benefits

Alongside a competitive salary our trainees receive:

  • 25 days holiday plus statutory holidays and the ability to buy up to an additional 5 days
  • Group personal pension plan with employer contributions
  • Flexible benefits package including health and dental cover, insurance and discounted shopping
  • Life assurance package
  • Subsidised parking and interest-free season ticket loan for travel
  • Postgraduate course sponsorship including tuition fees and maintenance grants

How and when to apply

Before applying, take a look at our Join Us section.  Here you will find out how you can discover more about the firm and our people before deciding whether to apply.

Applications to our Vacation Scheme are now closed, but you can still make an application to our Training Contract by 31st May 2024, which will run in the Spring. –  Click here to apply

We are currently supporting both the SQE and LPC routes to qualification as part of our training contract as follows:

  • For any applicants who have not yet completed or commenced an LPC course, our training contract offer will include sponsorship of the SQE.
  • We are still accepting applications from individuals who have already commenced or completed an LPC course, and these candidates will not need to complete the SQE as part of our training contract

You can also read more about us in and the Chambers student guide.

Come and meet us

Each Autumn we have a presence at various law and careers fairs in the North of England, whether they are held in person or online. More information on where we will be attending in 2024 will be available in the September.

Read our top tips on attending a legal career fair to make sure you are get the most out of attending – click here

If you want to ask us a question about our training contract, apprenticeships or other opportunities, please emails us at

Social Networking

You can follow our Emerging Talent Emerging Talent LinkedIn find out more about our activities in relations to early talent recruitment. For our firm wide news and insight please follow the Ward Hadaway LinkedIn and Twitter.


What's it like to train at Ward Hadaway?

Hosted by our training principal, Matthew Cormack, this webinar recording takes a deeper look into Ward Hadaway, our culture, our service, our contract, our place.

Top tips for applicants

Managing Associate Joe Kelley gives his top tips when applying for a training contract.

Our selection process

It is critical that we recruit motivated, skilled and forward-thinking individuals with the right mix of competency, skills, attitude and motivation. We therefore ensure our recruitment process is multi-dimensional as this gives you the best opportunity to show us what you are made of.

If you are successful at the application stage for our vacation scheme or training contract, we will invite you to complete an online critical thinking test. We will also invite you to attend one of our assessment centres which involves a range of activities, as well as the chance to meet some of our current trainees and trainee supervisors.

At every stage you will be assessed against our training contract competency criteria and the firm’s behaviours and values.

We recognise some of this may be daunting. So if your initial application is successful we’ll always provide you with more information telling you exactly what to expect at each stage of our recruitment process.