The Magistrates’ Court Mock Trial Competition has been running since 1994 and annually involves over 4,000 students from over 270 schools and 1,700 legal professional volunteers across over 40 magistrates’ courts in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The Magistrates’ Court Mock Trial Competition is part of the Young Citizens ‘citizenship experiences’ and helps to improve young people’s life skills, their understanding of the justice system and the legal system, and helps them to understand that the law touches every aspect of their lives.
Students from non-fee-paying schools, they must be in years 8-9 in England and Wales or years 9-10 in Northern Ireland.
The students take on the various roles in a trial and try a case against another school with the assistance of real life magistrates, legal advisers, court staff and other legal professionals.
Across the UK at one of the 40+ Magistrates’ Courts involved in the competition. For a list of all the confirmed local heats, please see our FAQ’s
The competition introduces the legal system to young people in an exciting way that has a lasting impact on all those involved, while developing student’s soft skills that will be of use throughout their lives.
- March – Local Heats
- May – Regional Heats
- June – The National Final
Please note: In most cases, the competition takes place on Saturdays when the courts are not in use.
Please see the terms and conditions for further details.
Student participant, Witness, Ranelagh School:
‘I was a witness and I really enjoyed learning my script to be asked questions about it by the opposite half of our team’s lawyer. She was very good at being intimidating and thinking on her feet so I had to really up my game to match her skills. I think I rose to the challenge and I think that this experience has been great for my public speaking and my confidence as I am not naturally a particularly outgoing person but the others on the team are. Overall, this has been great fun and I have thoroughly enjoyed it.’