Three new apprenticeships for aspiring solicitors as Hudgells continues to provide diverse opportunities for new legal careers

As a sign of continued investment in developing its own in-house legal talent, Hudgell Solicitors has announced the appointment of three new trainee solicitors commencing apprenticeships in September 2023.

The appointments are a measure of the firm’s success in diversifying its access routes into supported qualification roles beyond traditional training contracts and its continued investment in aspiring solicitors through the firm’s work experience and early careers programmes.

Hudgell Solicitors new trainees Phoebe Wigglesworth, Tema Thomas and Beth Stanhope

One of the new trainees is a former work experience placement student who later became a new claims advisor, another is commencing a solicitor apprenticeship following completion of a paralegal apprenticeship and the third is an existing paralegal who has been with the firm since September 2020.

Two of the individuals will be undertaking the 2.5 year graduate solicitor apprenticeship and the third transferring from the paralegal apprenticeship will be completing the 4 year non-graduate solicitor apprenticeship.

The three new appointments are from the firm’s successful early careers programme which is aimed at developing existing internal staff members and also individuals that have completed the firm’s work experience placement programme for future trainee solicitor positions.

The three trainee solicitors commencing roles this September are:

Telma Thomas

Telma completed a work experience placement with Hudgell Solicitors in its Hull office in autumn 2021 and, after graduating with a law degree from Hull University in 2022, Telma successfully secured a graduate solicitor apprenticeship with Hudgell Solicitors. For the last 12 months, Telma has worked in the firm’s New Claims Department learning key skills and getting valuable experience for her future career. In September 2023, Telma will commence her 2.5 year graduate solicitor apprenticeship which will see her complete her BPP course studies and SQE assessments around working for the firm in a trainee role to accrue qualifying work experience. Telma will initially be joining the firm’s Clinical Negligence academy under the expert guidance of Principal Solicitor Elizabeth Maliakal.

Beth Stanhope

Beth joined Hudgell Solicitors in September 2020 as a New Claims Advisor following completion of a Philosophy degree at Durham University and completion of a Masters in Law, incorporating the GDL course. In the summer of 2022, Beth then moved from the Hudgell’s Hull office to the Manchester office and commenced a paralegal role with the firm’s travel litigation department. Beth was also successful at the same time in applying for a graduate solicitor apprenticeship with the firm which like Telma, Beth will commence with BPP in September 2023 which will see her complete her BPP studies and the SQE assessments alongside working for the firm in a trainee role to accrue qualifying work experience. Beth will initially be working in the firm’s travel litigation department under the expert guidance of Paul McClorry, the firm’s Head of Travel Litigation and Serious Injury.

Pheobe Phoebe Wigglesworth

Phoebe joined Hudgell Solicitors in September 2021 as the firm’s very first legal apprentice. Phoebe joined the firm as a school-leaver and over the last two years has completed a 2-year paralegal apprenticeship with BPP alongside working for the firm. Following successful completion of this initial apprenticeship, Phoebe will begin a 4-year solicitor apprenticeship which will incorporate a LLB degree and also the SQE course. Phoebe will initially be working for the firm’s Civil Liberties department under the guidance of Head of Department,Victoria Richardson and will be assisting the team on a range of high profile inquest and inquiry instructions.

Continued investment in aspiring solicitors

Hudgell Solicitors’ Head of Corporate Services, John Cuss, who oversees all of the firm’s trainees in his role as the SRA approved Training Principal said “It is hugely rewarding to see three new ambitious aspiring solicitors starting trainee roles this autumn. It is particularly rewarding that all three of these positions are in the form of apprenticeships, with Telma and Beth undertaking the 2.5-year graduate solicitor apprenticeship and Phoebe completing the 4-year non-graduate solicitor apprenticeship.”

“As a firm we are committed to widening the access routes into our supported qualification journeys and apprenticeships are a big part of that strategy.”

“Beth, Telma and Phoebe will be joining the firm’s existing five trainee solicitors who are all completing the LPC based training contract route to qualification.”

John added: “Our new flexible early careers programme supports candidates wishing to undertake the traditional LPC – training contract qualification route under the SRA’s transitional provisions, or those individuals wishing to complete an apprenticeship – whether as a school leaver or as a graduate. This is very important for increasing the diversity of our qualification routes and so ensuring we attract the very best talent.”

The firm is now also supporting a number of internal paralegals with obtaining Qualifying Work Experience alongside independent qualification journeys with part time SQE courses. John explained: “This is again a sign of our commitment to supporting the development of our own internal talent in particular and widening access routes to our future qualified lawyer positions.”

John who was recently recognised for his mentoring with the PIBA 2023 Mentor of the Year Award, added “This is a very exciting time for Telma, Beth and Phoebe, I look forward to watching their continued development over the coming years and supporting them with their qualification journeys.”


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