Cllr David Walters has attacked the move.
THE former mayor of Cowes, Cllr David Walters, has condemned Cowes Week Ltd (CWL) for 'arrogance’ after the world famous regatta won the right to trademark 'Cowes Week’.
A trademark application lodged with the Intellectual Property Office in January 2012 by CWL, a private company owned by the town’s yacht clubs, has been successful, it emerged this week.
A list obtained by the County Press shows hundreds of items, including clothing, jewellery, household and kitchen utensils and even parties during the regatta, could be trademarked.
Michelle Warner, CWL’s sales and marketing director, admitted the list could apply to all traders in Cowes but strenuously denied a fee would be charged to local traders who wanted to sell Cowes Week goods. She said individuals who wanted to stage Cowes Week themed events would be able to continue to do so without interference.
Cowes Business Association is to hold an urgent meeting with CWL to raise any concerns traders have about the regatta organisation owning the trademark.
Cllr Walters told the County Press: "I am absolutely astounded at their arrogance. They have hijacked the town’s name. They run the risk of creating such bad feeling."
Cllr Lynn Hammond added: "What gives them the right to decide who can use the 'Cowes Week’ brand?"
Maddy Dobson, chairman of the business association, said: "People are worried but it is difficult to say what will happen until I sit down with CWL and get the full picture."
Ms Warner said CWL’s intention when it applied for the trademark had been to protect the world famous regatta’s name and to ensure it was not taken or used in an inappropriate way. She said Island businesses would be consulted about the new trademark.
She said: "The move is a positive step towards providing added protection for this flagship event."
The issue was due to be raised at a public meeting being staged by Cowes Town Council last night (Thursday).