I recently took part in the Landmark Chambers Property Moot 2015-16 and managed to reach the final, which took place on 3rd March this year.
It was an amazing experience and if I could do it all again I would, but unfortunately it’s almost time for me to make my way into actual adulthood, and so these opportunities will very rarely present themselves again! As a result, I thought it would be helpful and fun to compile a list of dos and don’ts for every wannabe mooter taking part in an external competition like Landmark.
Apply for these competitions as early on in your legal career as possible!
Even if you don’t want to be a barrister, you should take advantage of Jan Steele’s expert emailing capabilities and jump at the opportunities she will no doubt be telling you about! If there’s one thing I wish I did, that’s that I’d done the competition earlier and not waited until the third year of a law degree to balance a dissertation, essays and a competition (as well as trying to retain some semblance of a home life).
In our first round we went up against Exeter University and the usual university stigma prevailed in making us think there was absolutely no way we would get through to the next round, let alone the final! Southampton is actually a great law school, so use them to get the most out of your years here. The staff were invaluable to our success and they want to see you do well, so don’t underestimate yourself or the support that you will receive!
Take advantage of travelling.
It’s not as extravagant as it sounds – for us, the travel aspect was only to Landmark Chambers in London and then the Royal Courts of Justice in the final round, but there are tons of external competitions which take place all over the world! Recently MootSoc sent teams to Ireland, and our alumni came back to talk to potential students about the Hong Kong moots. Again, even if you don’t want your day in court, please try and have it just for the travel if anything else!
Take criticism too harshly.
The things you will be told throughout the progress of every competition will no doubt contradict depending on who is judging you. BUT be that as it may, these are professionals who work 7 days a week (most likely) and are giving up their time to help YOU. So while somebody may rip apart your skeleton argument that you spent 3 weeks preparing, at the end of the day it will improve your advocacy skills tremendously, both in the written and oral sense. Just try not to get too upset that the fruits of your labours are under someone else’s scrutiny!