Pytram v Models (Leicester) Ltd: ChD 1930

A model of a wolf-cub’s head was produced from a papier-mache mould in order to be used as a totem by the Boy Scouts Association. They had failed to register it as a design under the 1907 Act and sued for infringement of their copyright under the 1911 Act.
Held: The item was not protected by copyright, but was an artistic work under the 1911 Act and also fell within the definition of a ‘design’ under the 1907 Act as amended by the 1919 Act, since it was intended to be reproduced more than fifty times: ‘The whole point in the preparation of this model was to enable the plaintiffs to supply totem poles in large quantities.’ As a consequence of the amended definition of ‘design’, it was excluded from protection under the 1911 Act and no protection existed for it under the 1907 Act without registration.
Clauson J
[1930] 1 Ch 639
Patents and Designs Act 1907, Patents and Designs Act 1919, Copyright Act 1911
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedLucasfilm Ltd and Others v Ainsworth and Another CA 16-Dec-2009
The claimants had made several Star Wars films for which the defendants had designed various props items. The parties disputed ownership of the rights in the designs, and in articular of a stormtrooper helmet. The issues came down to whether the . .
CitedLucasfilm Ltd and Others v Ainsworth and Another SC 27-Jul-2011
The claimant had produced the Star War films which made use of props, in particular a ‘Stormtrooper’ helmet designed by the defendant. The defendant had then himself distributed models of the designs he had created. The appellant obtained judgment . .

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Updated: 19 March 2021; Ref: scu.384432