Whiskey distillery fails to prevent hotel developer from using Tomatin village name

A whiskey distillery has failed in its bid to prevent a hotel developer from using the name of a Highlands village in its company branding. The matter began when Tomatin Distillery, the producer of Tomatin single malt, tried to oppose The Tomatin Trading Company from using the name of the village by arguing that it amounted to trade mark infringement.

In the Ouster House, it was decided by Lady Wolffe that the public would be able to tell the difference between the two companies by stating that “The relevant public, who will be consumers of Scotch whisky, will appreciate that the defender’s sign (Tomatin Trading) is used in relation to different goods and services than those offered by the pursuer (the distillery).”

The hotel developer owns a plot of land close to the distillery and was granted permission for development back in 2018. The following year, the company filed a trade mark application with the UK Intellectual Property Office which included the name Tomatin, catching the attention of the whiskey distillery, resulting in the start of the trade mark dispute.

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