Brands: Registering street names as trade marks

United Kingdom
Savile Row spectacles

Hardie Amies Limited of Savile Row succeeded in an opposition to a trade mark application for SAVILE ROW for spectacles on the grounds that the public would assume that goods marked SAVILE ROW came from that area. The practice of the Trade Marks Registry was to allow street names to be registered as trade marks only if the name of the street was not connected with the goods in any way. Savile Row obviously enjoyed a particular reputation for tailoring and the Registrar decided that the reputation for tailoring would "spill over" into sunglasses since a number of fashion houses also make and sell sunglasses. Not only would the proposed mark be deceptive to the public, but it was incapable of distinguishing the applicant's goods.