Market trader selling unofficial poppy brooches admits trademark offences

Poppy Appeal

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

A market trader who was selling unofficial poppy brooches has admitted trademark offences.

Sixty-four-year-old Barry Downs was selling the brooches for £2.99 each at a market in County Durham in the run up to Remembrance Day last year, despite having no link to the Royal British Legion.

The trader was found to have 287 of the broocheson his stall, and a further 182 in his car.

Mr Downs is believed to have purchased some of the poppies from a wholesaler in Manchester, and swapped others with an unknown man.



After receiving complaints about the trader, Trading Standards visited the market in November 2017 and seized the items.

Mr Downs admitted seven offences under the Trademark Act at Newton Aycliffe Magistrates' Court.


'Shape of the poppies' breached copyright

Bill Davison, who defended Mr Downs, said none of the poppies had Royal British Legion markings on them, adding: "It is the shape of the poppies which is the breach of copyright.

"Yes it is an infringement, yes it is unfortunate that it is poppies in particular which is a worthwhile charitable fund, but this is a man who has not gone out of his way to commit these offences."

Bench chairman Aileen Little said the case warranted a community order and she stood the case down to allow for a probation report.