From the archives: 1990 – Freshfields promises “exotic pleasures” to trainees

We love an old law firm graduate recruitment advert at Lawyer 2B, largely because so many of them are utterly bonkers.

The latest trawl of our archives has unearthed this offering from 1990, an effort by Freshfields (in the days before they had Bruckhaus Derringer attached).

It’s hard to decide what the best thing about this advert is. Is it the implication that trainees will get to ride around on a Freshfields-branded elephant?

Freshfields elephant

Or is it the dress code of bowler hat, umbrella and colonial spear?

Freshfields dress code

However, we think the undoubtedly excellent illustration (by famed absurdist artist Glen Baxter, which explains a lot) is beaten by the ad’s text.

This promises trainees that their career prospects will be “polished to a lustre” – but hints that their training will be fitted in around the “exotic pleasures well outside the law” that take up most of the day at Freshfields. Fortunately, these only extend to “cultural and sporting delights” suitable for a clean living young lawyer, such as seven-a-side rugby and the “hurly-burly of Brahms at the Barbican.”

Freshfields blurb

The tone of the entire advert suggests it was meant to be tongue in cheek, but after 25 years it’s hard to tell. Lawyers who lived the dream at Freshfields in the early 90s are welcome to get in touch. Meanwhile, the full ad can be viewed below.

Freshfields advert
Click to enlarge