RollOnFriday has asked the top 20 firms in the City to confirm the number of women that have entered partnership recently. And the figures are generally pretty dismal.

Firms were asked for the number of promotions (including lateral hires) made over the last three years, to balance out any anomalies. Some of them have yet to announce 2011 rounds, so we'll update the figures over the next few weeks. But as things stand, Ashurst is comfortably at the bottom of the pile with just two women entering its partnership over the last three years - that's 6% of the 33 partners made up in total. A spokeswoman refused to comment on these figures, so it's not clear whether they're down to sexism or because intelligent woman don't want to be forced to record at least ten hours every day.

    Ashurst's partnership manual 

At the other end of the table is Herbert Smith which has welcomed 13 women out of 31 new partners (in 2009 and 2010), a rate of 42%. Still not proportionate with the number of women joining the firm as trainees, but a serious step in the right direction and miles ahead of the competition.

Allen & Overy and Linklaters are the pick of the Magic Circle with 22% each (13/59 and 14/64 respectively). This compares favourably with Freshfields (14%, 9/66) and Slaughter and May (11%, 1/9) - although S&M pointed out that three out of the four partners entering its partnership in 2008 were women. Clifford Chance doesn't have its 2011 figures yet, but made up ten women out of 60 partners over the last two years, a rate of 17%.

The table currently looks as follows:

Total new partners '09-'11
Of whom female
Herbert Smith  31  13 42% 
Norton Rose  38 10 26% 
Addleshaw Goddard  27  6 22% 
Allen & Overy  59  13
DLA Piper  147  32
Linklaters 64 14
Hogan Lovells*
Pinsent Masons 41 7
Clifford Chance 60 10
Freshfields  66  9
Slaughter and May  1
Ashurst  33  2

* Figures a combination of Hogan Lovells partners and legacy Lovells partners
Tip Off ROF

Please note that comments are subject to moderation.