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Vogue Magazine Threatens To Sue UK Pub

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Vogue Magazine Threatens To Sue UK Pub

Fashion magazine Vogue has sent a cease-and-desist letter to a pub in the hamlet of Vogue in Cornwall

The Star Inn at Vogue has been a pub for more than 200 years, but it seems that Vogue's publisher, Condé Nast, has only just got wind of it, and has now sent a letter in which it claims that members of the public may make an incorrect ‘connection’ between the decades-old boozer and the high-end fashion mag. 

Publicans Mark and Rachel Graham told CornwallLive they initially thought it was a wind-up when they got the letter through the post, but have since discovered it's the real deal. 

The Star Inn at Vogue in Cornwall. Credit: BPM Media
The Star Inn at Vogue in Cornwall. Credit: BPM Media
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Sent from Condé Nast’s Chief Operating Officer Sabine Vandenbroucke, it reads in part: “Our company is the proprietor of the Vogue mark, not only for its world-famous magazine first published in November 1916 but in respect of other goods and services offered to the public by our company.

“We are concerned that the name which you are using is going to cause problems because as far as the general public is concerned a connection between your business and ours is likely to be inferred.”

The letter then adds: “Please reply within seven days or we will take remedial action.”

Speaking to CornwallLive, Mark said: “When I opened the letter I thought some bugger in the village was having me on. 

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Publican Mark Graham initially thought the letter was a wind-up. Credit: BPM Media
Publican Mark Graham initially thought the letter was a wind-up. Credit: BPM Media

“Surely these people can’t be serious. In this modern day and age someone couldn’t be bothered to go onto Google and see that Vogue is a Cornish hamlet that’s been here for hundreds of years. It seems common sense has taken a backseat on this one.”

However, he did reply to the letter and also sent a selection of photos of both the pub and several streets in Vogue, which also bear its name. 

Mark, 60, wrote back: “Whilst I found your letter interesting on the one hand, I also found it hilariously funny. I presume your magazine bases its name on the dictionary term for being in fashion which is uncapitalised as used in the Oxford English Dictionary.

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“If a member of your staff had taken the time to investigate they would have discovered that our company, the Star Inn, is in the small village of Vogue, near St Day, Cornwall. Yes, that’s right, Vogue is the name of our village, which has been in existence for hundreds of years and in fact is a Cornish word, not English.

Mark sent his own letter back telling the publisher he wouldn't be changing the pub's name. Credit: BPM Media
Mark sent his own letter back telling the publisher he wouldn't be changing the pub's name. Credit: BPM Media

“I note in your letter that you have only been in existence since 1916 and I presume that at the time when you chose the name Vogue in the capitalised version you didn’t seek permission from the villagers of the real Vogue. I also presume that Madonna did not seek your permission to use the word Vogue (again the capitalised version) for her 1990s song of the same name.

"You are both at liberty to use the uncapitalised version without our permission. As a side note she didn’t seek our permission either.”

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He ended his letter: “In answer to your question whether we would change our name, it is a categorical NO.”

Featured Image Credit: BPM Media

Topics: UK News, Food And Drink

Claire Reid
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