Pemberton Greenish

Pemberton Greenish

Address: 45 Cadogan Gardens, London, SW3 2AQ




Survey results


The lowdown (in their own words...)

Why did you choose this firm over any others? 
 '‘Excellence in property and private wealth’; ‘good work/life balance’; ‘the practice areas were perfect for me’; ‘location’; ‘reputation’
Best thing about the firm? 
 '‘Location’; ‘work/life balance’; ‘friendliness’; ‘supportiveness of staff’
Worst thing about the firm? 
 '‘No secondment opportunities’; ‘three out of five seats are only four months long – it would be nice to have the full six months in each department’
Best moment? 
 '‘A client meeting in which I was given the go-ahead by a partner to take an actively vocal role and to lead the questioning’
Worst moment?
 '‘Probably the first day of a new seat’; ‘taking ten days out to complete the PSC exams’'

If the firm were a fictional character it would be...

George Smiley (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) – amiable, intelligent, trustworthy

The Verdict

The firm

Pemberton Greenish focuses on the three core areas of corporate, private wealth and real estate, carving out an enviable reputation in these areas for over 200 years. Clients include real estate businesses, domestic and international private individuals and charitable foundations and trusts. 

The star performers

Commercial property: general; Commercial property: investment; Property litigation.

The deals

Pemberton Greenish advises clients on a range of investment and development mandates, and is the firm of choice for conflict work from many larger practices.

The clients

Birchall Properties; Helical Bar; Native Land.

The Verdict

Pemberton Greenish is commended by trainees for its ‘excellence in property and private wealth’. Survey respondents enthuse about the ‘level of responsibility’ they are given, and a training contract highlight for one member of the cohort was ‘a client meeting in which I was given the go-ahead by a partner to take an actively vocal role and to lead the questioning’. Sloane Square is considered a ‘perfect location’ to work in, and the firm’s links with the nearby Saatchi Gallery are great news for one ‘art-loving’ trainee. There are complaints about a ‘lack of secondments’, and of ‘some seats being four months long as it would be nice to have the full six months in each department’, particularly with one trainee finding ‘the first day of a new seat’ to be a daunting moment. There is ‘less fierce competition between trainees’ at this ‘friendly firm’, and the ‘supportiveness of staff’ is equally appreciated. ‘Taking ten days out to complete the PSC exams’ wasn’t fun, yet Pemberton Greenish takes care to ensure trainees enjoy a ‘good work/life balance’, which leads to Lex 100 Winner medals in the stress-free and work/life balance categories. Aside from the regular caseload, trainees are encouraged to undertake pro bono work, and for one respondent this led to ‘a project which was very interesting and very different to other work I have undertaken here’. To train at a small London firm with a ‘superb reputation’ and clear areas of specialism, take a closer look at Pemberton Greenish.

 A day in the life of...

Rebecca Day first-year trainee, Pemberton Greenish LLP 
Departments to date:  Corporate, private wealth and residential real estate
Degree:LLB Law 

9.00am:  I sit down at my desk after an early-morning gym workout. I eat my breakfast at my desk while I review my emails and prioritise my task list for the day ahead.

9.30am:  This morning I am reviewing a new matter which I am taking over from one of my colleagues. I spend some time reviewing the file. Trainees have the opportunity to run their own files, as well as assisting other fee-earners, in the residential real estate team. This really helps to improve my communication, drafting and research skills. On this particular matter the client has asked us to draft a deed of variation to vary his lease. Once I have finished drafting the document, my supervisor gives me helpful feedback and explains the next stage of the process so I can take the matter forward.

11.30am:  I receive a memo from a partner in the team asking me to submit Land Registry applications to tidy up the register of the property he is working on. I ask one of my colleagues for assistance where I am not sure but I am otherwise able to complete and submit these applications on my own. I make a diary note to check the progress of the application in two weeks.

1.00pm:  At lunch I have a fundraising and events committee (FAEC) meeting. The FAEC arranges social events for staff and fundraises for the firm’s chosen charity. Previous events have included a staff quiz, Bake-Off competition and Just-A-Minute game show! Trainees are involved with organising events throughout their training contract and chair the committee in their second year of training. Trainees are also responsible for arranging the staff Christmas party, which is a brilliant opportunity to interact and socialise with people from across all departments.

2.00pm:  In the afternoon I accompany a partner to a meeting at the client’s address. Trainees in residential real estate often get the opportunity to attend meetings, conferences with counsel and hearings at court or the tribunal. Afterwards I draft an attendance note of the meeting for the file and discuss the next steps with my supervisor. The client has asked us to prepare a note of our formal legal advice and to draft several documents.

3.30pm:  Before I can make a start on drafting, I have a telephone call from a solicitor on another matter. We have been in negotiations over a licence for alterations to a flat which has finally been agreed. He informs me that he would like to complete the licence today. Once off the phone, I review the file and contact my client to take instructions on completion. My client agrees and I telephone the solicitor back to complete the licence. Afterwards I arrange for the necessary documents to be sent to the other side.

4.00pm:  I pick up where I left off following my meeting this afternoon. Drafting the advice memo involves carrying out research and reviewing the deeds packets. My first draft takes an hour and a half. Once I have completed it I give it to the partner to review.

5.30pm:  I receive an email from the Land Registry informing me that registration of a property I am dealing with has now been completed. I print the necessary documents and update the file. I also inform the matter partner of the progress and draft a letter to the client to inform them that their property has now been registered.

6.00pm:  I meet my colleagues in the local pub for a drink before heading home.

About the firm

Address:45 Cadogan Gardens, London, SW3 2AQ

Telephone: 020 7591 3333

Fax:020 7591 3300

Senior partner : Robert Barham

CEO : Robert Graham-Campbell

Who we are: We are a central London law firm with over 200 years’ experience specialising in the property, private wealth and SME sectors. We provide our clients with ‘big firm’ expertise, but with an individual approach and personal service which only specialist firms can provide.

What we do: Our core practice areas are real estate, private wealth and corporate. Our clients include domestic and international private individuals, real estate and entrepreneurial businesses, and charitable foundations and trusts.

What we are looking for: We look for candidates who are bright and able to think commercially and practically. We want a team player and someone who will actively contribute to the firm’s social activities. We are also looking for candidates with a genuine interest in the firm’s practice areas who are looking to develop their careers at the firm.

What you'll do:Trainees will rotate through five seats during a two-year period: residential real estate, commercial real estate, private wealth, corporate and real estate disputes. Trainees will handle ‘real work’ with early responsibility and will receive legal and skills-based training, and ongoing support and feedback.

Perks: 25 days’ holiday, pension scheme, season ticket loan.

Sponsorship:Details upon application.


Facts and figures

Trainee places available for 2019: Up to 3


First year: £31,750 (September 2017)

Second year: £33,250

Total partners: 19

Other fee-earners:36

Total trainees:5

 Application process


How: Online only.

When to Apply:By 30 June 2017 for 2019 contracts.