NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

National Trust for Scotland backs down in 'Glencoe' trademark row

Dave Shand and Mark Bishop Image copyright NAtional Trust for Scotland
Image caption The NTS has reached agreement with clothing firm boss Dave Shand (L) over the Glencoe trademark

The National Trust for Scotland has backed down in a dispute over the name of jacket sold by an Aberdeenshire clothing firm.

The charity has admitted it "got it wrong" when its lawyers wrote to Hilltrek Outdoor Clothing demanding they stop selling their Glencoe jacket.

NTS owns Glencoe and holds the trademark for its name.

However, NTS said there would be no restriction on Hilltreck using the name for its product.

The trust's director of customer and cause, Mark Bishop, said they did not want the trademark to affect established businesses with local products.

"On this occasion, we got it wrong," he said.

"If we had done our homework on Hilltrek before our lawyers contacted them, it would have been clear that this was a Scottish company which has been manufacturing this product with this name for a number of years.

"Our first response would then have been to come to a mutual agreement over the issue, which is what we have now achieved.

"I am pleased to say that there will be no restriction on Hilltrek continuing to use Glencoe as before as the name of this product line.

"There is much we have in common as we both appeal to people who love Scotland's magnificent wild lands and this is something we want to focus on together."

Image copyright Hilltrek Outdoor Clothing
Image caption The letter demanded the clothing firm stop selling the Glencoe jacket

Dave Shand, who owns Aboyne-based Hilltrek, had described the letter he received from NTS lawyers as "bullying and threatening".

But he has now shaken hands with Mr Bishop on an agreement with the NTS.

Mr Shand said: "I am delighted that we were able to come to an agreement so quickly and that Hilltrek will continue to sell our high-quality Glencoe jackets.

"As I have said before, the National Trust for Scotland does a lot of good work protecting and caring for the places our customers enjoy.

"I urge people to go on supporting the charity and the work they do."

The NTS said it felt it had no option but to trademark place names, when it emerged that a third party could trademark their properties.

Mr Bishop added: "This means that anyone from any nation may be able to trademark our properties, quite possibly in connection with a product we don't want to be associated with.

"If the authorities across the UK and Europe, and the politicians they answer to, want to review the decision to allow place-names to be trademarked, we would wholeheartedly support this."

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