Ellie describes a typical day in the life of a trainee solicitor at Russell-Cooke. Ellie is currently at the start of her first seat in the real estate department in the Bedford Row office in central London.

8.30am: I start my day by going for a walk in my local park. I have no need to commute but it always feels good to get some fresh air and steps in before sitting down to start my day. I have also just moved to London and even though we are currently in a full national lockdown it is a great time to explore my new local area (I do still get slightly lost though!).

9.15am: Once I arrive back home, I make a coffee and carry it five flights of stairs back up to my desk. I then log on to my computer, load up my emails and check MS Teams.

Starting a training contract virtually can be a daunting experience but I feel very lucky to be part of such a friendly team. We have a trainee WhatsApp and an MS Teams Group Chat where you can check in with the other trainees whenever you need to. I am of course looking forward to meeting everyone in person as soon as we are able to.

9.30am: I check my emails to see what has come in overnight and find I have an email from my mentor asking if I have any capacity to help her with a matter today so I give her a call on MS Teams. In the real estate team I have a supervisor and a mentor. I have informal weekly catch ups with my mentor and we discuss all the matters I am currently working on. 

10.30am: I have to make a call to the other side's solicitors to chase a probate application on behalf of one of our clients. I then report back any updates from my call to my supervisor and our client and update my list of tasks accordingly. 

11.30am: I have been asked to draft a lease for one of our clients so I make a start on that, starting by opening a new matter, drafting a letter of engagement and reading through the agreed heads of terms of the lease that have been sent through by the prospective tenant's solicitor. 

12.30pm: We have a team meeting weekly on MS Teams, which is a great way to understand what everyone in the team is working on and for the team to check in with each other whilst everyone is working remotely.

1.30pm: I try to get outside at lunchtime and another walk is on the cards for today. This time with my flatmate who is also working from home. We decide to walk past our local GAIL's and pick up a takeaway coffee, wearing our masks of course.

2.30pm: I return to my desk and continue work on drafting the lease. I have received another email over my lunch break about drafting a licence to alter. This is an agreement between the landlord and the tenant for the tenant to carry out alterations to the property. In the real estate team in Bedford Row we often act for landlords and I will be drafting this licence to alter on behalf of one of our landlord clients.

4.30pm: My supervisor calls me on MS Teams and asks if I could draft two mortgage discharge (DS1) forms for a client who owns two flats. The client has paid off the mortgages on both and would like the land registry to record the release of both charges. I do a quick search and find the correct forms, download and fill them in and send them off to the Land Registry.

17.45pm: I update my matters list with the new tasks that I have been asked to do that day, jot down any tasks that I will pick up next week and rewrite my to-do list ready for the following week.

6.00pm: This evening we have a virtual trainee social. We haven't all been able to meet each other in person yet, but we have had a few virtual socials where we've been able to chat and get to know each other. I grab my drink of choice and join the call.

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