Richard Ive

Country: United Kingdom
Sector: Law
Job title: Barrister
Subject of study: History and Politics / Political Thought
Year of graduation: 2015
Type/Level of study: Postgraduate Taught, Undergraduate

Current Employer/Organisation Name

Farrar’s Building

What have you been doing since leaving Exeter, and what are you doing now?

After leaving Exeter in September 2016, I moved to London to commence the law conversion course – the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL). I completed this in June 2017. In September 2017, I commenced the BPTC – the Bar Course. I completed this in June 2018. I was Called to the Bar in October 2018, and then went on to undertake pupillage. After pupillage, I moved to Farrar’s Building Chambers. I have been a tenant at Farrar’s since April 2022. As a tenant at Farrar’s, I work full time as a barrister in London.

Why did you choose this career? And what do you enjoy most about your work?

I was drawn to becoming a barrister for several reasons. First, the intellectual challenge and stimulation of the work. Second, the oral advocacy opportunities. And, third, the independence – professional and personal. It is difficult to say what I most enjoy because I enjoy so many things about being a barrister. I relish the variety, but I also very much enjoy meeting people from so many different walks of life.

Please tell us if you were a member of any societies, groups or sports clubs?

I had a very happy four years at Exeter. Academically, I enjoyed a varied time. Away from my studies, I was a member of several different clubs – (i) the Climbing Club, (ii) the Expedition Society, (iii) the Sailing Club, and (iv) the Debating Society. I enjoyed spending my weekends exploring the South West, with many happy days spent on Dartmoor.

What did you enjoy most about your programme and what was the biggest highlight?

The variety. I wrote essays on a wide range of topics – monasteries as places of learning in the twelfth century, the Spanish Civil War, and Rousseau’s notion of freedom, to name just a few. Over the course of my four years at Exeter, I had to give eight academic presentations as part of my studies. I always immensely enjoyed these, so I would say that those presentations were the highlight of my respective programmes.

What did you enjoy most about studying here?

The adventures – outdoor adventures and intellectual ones.

Why did you choose to study at Exeter?

I remember visiting Exeter when I was in sixth-form. It was a beautiful, June day. There was not a cloud in sight. I remember being at the top of Forum Hill and feeling enchanted by the surrounding hills. And I was struck by how green the University was. From that day onwards, I was set on studying at Exeter. But there were two things that really drew me to Exeter. First, the course – I was impressed by the History and Politics BA programme. Second, the location – easy access to Dartmoor, rural Devon, and Cornwall, and the sea.

What skills and experiences have been most useful for your career?

First, communication skills. Second, Interpersonal skills. Third, presentation/ advocacy skills. At Exeter, I developed experience of arguing clearly and persuasively. That experience has proven invaluable in my career. Also, while at Exeter, I gained experience of juggling lots of different competing interests and deadlines. That experience has been very useful in the early stages of my career.

What advice would you give to a current student who wishes to pursue your career?

First, focus on your degree. Aim for – and, ideally, graduate with – a First. Second, hone your presentation and advocacy skills. Gain debating and/or mooting experience. Third, gain legal experience. Undertake mini pupillages in a variety of Chambers.

What are your plans for the future?

To continue to build my practice. I am excited to be instructed on new, interesting – and increasingly complex – cases.


Similar Alumni

Jasmine Murphy

Gatehouse Chambers. After leaving Exeter in 1998 I undertook Bar School part time while working part time in London as a receptionist. In 2002 I obtained a pupillage at Hardwicke Building, following which I was offered a tenancy. I have practiced there (although we changed our name to Gatehouse Chambers in 2021) ever since and specialise in personal injury and professional negligence work.

Ken Chia

CNPLaw LLP. I am a partner in a top-10 Singapore law firm (with around 50 lawyers) and I am the head of the Corporate Advisory team (comprising around 10 lawyers) at the firm. I am also a part-owner of the firm.