Mock employment tribunal launches new Poole HR Forum

Courtroom drama: Kate Brooks, Partner & Head of Employment/HR at Ellis Jones (left) with (left to right) Sam Marshall and Joanna Wharton of Rubicon Recruitment Group; 3PB barrister Craig Ludlow; Amy Edwards, Ellis Jones HR Coordinator, and Marion Atherton of Bournemouth & Poole College.

Courtroom drama came to Dorset when a mock employment tribunal was staged at Bournemouth & Poole College.

Ellis Jones Solicitors organised the ‘trial’ as part of a new Poole HR (Human Resources) Forum with Rubicon Recruitment Group.

The mock tribunal centred on an imaginary case and featured specialist barristers from 3PB, one of the UK’s oldest and fourth largest chambers.

It aimed to give a practical insight into the tribunal process and the law surrounding unfair dismissal.

The audience included several HR management students from the college as well as HR professionals and also representatives from Ellis Jones and Rubicon.

Kate Brooks, Partner, Solicitor and Head of Employment/HR Services at Ellis Jones, conducted the mock tribunal together with a specialist barrister.

Kate said: “It allowed us to show examples of the documents that you can expect to see in a real-life tribunal as well as describe the steps needed to prepare for tribunal. It also gave an insight into how an employment tribunal is conducted, including the cross examination of a witness.

“Mock events like this are a great way for people to see at first-hand the workings of an employment tribunal without actually being involved in the real thing.”

Amy Edwards, a college HR student who works for Ellis Jones, acted as the claimant bringing the case for unfair dismissal.

She said: “It was really insightful to see the correct process of a tribunal and how the barristers interpreted the case and tried to convince the judge of their argument with in-depth questions.

“The mock tribunal highlighted how not to conduct a disciplinary procedure and what happens if an employer gets their process wrong.”

College lecturer Marion Atherton, who oversaw the event and teaches Human Resource management, said: “We were delighted that Ellis Jones were able to visit the College and share their vast experience with our students.

“Employment law is a vital part of our HR courses. This event represented an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about how unfair dismissal cases play out in the courtroom.”

The new Poole HR Forum will meet every quarter and allow HR professionals to explore and discuss topics of interest.

Each session will showcase a guest speaker discussing a topical HR, business or recruitment issue followed by the opportunity to network with peers and share advice and best practice.

For more information or details of future events then please contact Sam Marshall at, telephone 01202 680311.


Note to journalists:

Ellis Jones is a regional law firm with more than 160 staff including 14 partners.

It has six offices across the south coast in Bournemouth, Canford Cliffs (Poole), Christchurch, Ringwood, Swanage and Wimborne – as well as London – and offers a wide range of services to individuals and businesses.

Ellis Jones was named ‘Law Firm of the Year’ at the 2018 Dorset Legal Awards.

For more details, please contact: Andrew Diprose, Director, Deep South Media Ltd, on 01202 534487.