It is easy to forget that just 12 months ago the U.K. legal industry was still in the grip of an intense pay war. Salaries had jumped a huge amount since things escalated a year before and every few weeks seemed to bring a new announcement.

Widespread relief across the industry only arrived in June 2022 when Allen & Overy made what it called the “prudent” decision to hold salaries at £107,500, then it was joined by Linklaters, which told its associates in an email that the firm was in no rush to raise salaries.