Copyright and the Wolf of Wolverhampton
Premier League football club Wolverhampton Wanderers is facing allegations copyright infringement from Peter Davies, who claims he drew the head of the wolf used on the player’s shirts. Mr Davies claim has been issued in the High Court.
Mr Davies, who is now in his 70s, claims he drew the wolf’s head logo when he was at school in the early 1960s for an art gallery competition. The sketch was drawn after a teacher asked him to illustrate his understanding of Pascal’s hexagrammum mysticum theorem.
He wrote to the club in 1979 when he first recognised the use of his illustration on Wolves’ new kit. For reasons that have not yet been disclosed, when he did not receive a response from the club he took no further action and did not issue proceedings at the time.
The executives at Wolves argue Mr Davies has no original artwork and has waited too long to pursue proceedings. They argue that these factors, though particularly the unusually long wait, should weigh against him. The club have said the Wolves logo was designed by graphic designer Ian Jackson in 1979 and modernised by Jonathan Russell in 2002.
The trial will be heard by Mr Justice Nugee who will analyse evidence and legal argument over four days. The judge has already heard that Mr Davies applied to register the wolf head as a design in 2016.
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