Our training contract in Aberdeen is a great opportunity to work on multimillion deals and assist some of our major clients across a wide range of industries in the UK and internationally. During your training contract you will build long-lasting relationships with Pinsent Masons colleagues and our clients, whilst having a chance to explore beautiful Scottish countryside.
These, and more, are the things that Lauren experienced during her secondment. We asked her how she found the move from busy London to picturesque Aberdeenshire and what her highlights of working in the Granite City are.
After completing a Vacation Placement in 2015, I secured a Training Contract at Pinsent Masons London office. However, a month before starting I found out that I would be spending my first six months in Aberdeen in Finance and Projects. My seat was specifically focused on Energy which in Aberdeen means a lot of Oil & Gas work. Having never been to Aberdeen (or anywhere further north in the UK than Edinburgh!), it was a great opportunity to experience a totally different part of the UK.
I moved up with another London trainee after a week-long induction that all Pinsent Masons trainees undertake in Glasgow. It’s worth mentioning that Pinsent Masons provided serviced accommodation and a removal service, as well as covering the costs of transport to Aberdeen which made things much easier for me.
What were your first impressions of the Aberdeen office and the city in general?
A lot of googling ‘Aberdeen’, ‘things to do in Aberdeen’, ‘day trips from Aberdeen’ etc. hadn’t given too much away. My pre-conceptions were shaped by constant online references to ‘The Grey/Granite City’ which I soon learned were in no way indicative of the city’s vibrant culture, beautifully intricate old buildings and stunning surrounding countryside.
Pinsent Masons’ office in Aberdeen is situated in a beautiful converted Victorian granite villa, with two working floors and a converted attic with a kitchen and sofas. It’s about as different from Crown Place in London as possibly imaginable but didn’t take long to settle in.
My team and the office were incredibly welcoming, and it was a steep learning curve into both the Oil & Gas industry and the legal and political framework around it. I was given a lot of responsibility from an early stage. During my six months I was involved in some really interesting work, including a £228 million deal for the transfer of multiple UKCS oil fields.
The work was transactional so I helped to draft contracts (including part of a Non-Disclosure Agreement) and Parent Company Guarantees. Undertaking research for different members of the team was also a large part of my role. The interesting topics I worked on included Health and Safety Regulations for offshore installations, and options for expert determination under a Decommissioning Security Agreement.
As part of the wider Energy team, I did renewable energy work for colleagues in the Edinburgh office. I also worked closely with colleagues in Singapore and Glasgow on O&G specific parts of corporate deals and diligence exercises.
Hiking trip to Loch Muick
It was great to grow close to the other trainees; drinks at the Malmaison down the road from the office were a Friday night staple (£6 cocktails and free tapas platters!) and Aberdeen colleagues provided an immediate support network. We celebrated Burns Night together in true Scottish fashion, complete with haggis, neeps and tatties, and of course, bagpipes.
During my six months, I also became a Mentor for the University of Aberdeen Mentoring Scheme; a rewarding and useful exercise for both my Mentee and me. Outside the office, I joined a local triathlon club with another trainee and spent most weekends out in Royal Deeside and the Cairngorm National Park climbing hills and Munros.
I would recommend the Aberdeen office in any capacity, from one six-month seat to an entire Training Contract. It is supportive, friendly and does incredibly high-calibre and international work with multiple other Pinsent Masons offices across the world.
You can find out more about our Aberdeen office here.
Just as the second lockdown struck, so approached application deadlines for vacation placements. So, here’s an overview of how I got to know Pinsent Masons virtually.
Read about Taylor's experience of our Virtual Vacation Scheme
Anne Sammon is an Employment & Reward Partner in London. Anne has significant experience in tribunal and high-court litigation in areas including discrimination, unfair dismissal and whistleblowing.