Dan Forshaw



Travers Smith fast facts:

Name: Daniel Forshaw

University: Bristol

Degree and subject: Law and French (with study in Bordeaux)

Current department: Corporate

Previous departments: Dispute Resolution, Real Estate, Tax

Daniel Forshaw is in the final seat of his training contract at Travers Smith. Here, he looks back on his typical day and how the Firm supported his development during the pandemic.

"I initially applied to Travers Smith because I thought the combination of training quality and personable and supportive culture was the ideal mix for my development. My experience on the vacation scheme confirmed that the work and the training would be of high quality and that (more importantly) Travers Smith’s people are incredibly genuine and fun to be around.

The tailored training and support you receive from the team are fantastic. If you express an interest in a particular type of work or field, your senior colleagues will make a sincere effort to give you exposure to that area. Similarly, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in non-fee-earning work such as pro-bono and CSR initiatives and you will be supported if you have a particular passion or initiative idea.

My Typical Day

I cycle in after going to the gym in the morning, shower at work, get breakfast in the café, then get set up at my desk. I check my to-do list and get started with work, which is interspersed with chatting to people, calls etc. I then have lunch with other trainees before cracking on with whatever I have left on my to-do list and dealing with new tasks. I typically cycle home around 7-8pm and cook tea but might log back on if I have any outstanding matters to sort. Responsibilities vary widely depending on which department I am sat in and what work I have at any given time.

Pro Bono work is enormously important to Travers Smith, and the Firm's Head of Pro bono Sam Cottman does a fantastic job at leading these initiatives. I helped two other lawyers win a Non-Molestation Order for a pro-bono client who was a victim of domestic violence. It was very rewarding and is one of the best examples of when my skills in this profession have been used to improve an individual’s life directly and measurably.

The pandemic posed a particular challenge during my training contract. As a trainee you do not necessarily have a settled home life or an established network in the Firm. Travers Smith set up regular room calls to help you build your network and trainees were included in client calls. I have friends at other firms, and by comparison, Travers Smith has been unrivalled with its support for its people during the pandemic. The Firm stood out in its material support, offering whatever we need to make our home set-ups more comfortable, and the softer side such as communication and policy decisions.

Outside of work, I enjoy watching and playing football, cycling, going to the gym, climbing, eating out, reading, walking in the countryside, gigs, and seeing new places.

My Top Tips for Applicants

  • Be yourself (and genuine – do not hold back).

  • Do not be afraid to make mistakes.

  • Be curious and ask questions (even/especially the obvious ones)."

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