Branding London’s Electric Charging Points

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One of the hidden gems of e-Government is the Intellectual Property Office website. The IP Office have the responsibilities their name implies – they are the government body responsible for Intellectual Property rights (such as patents, trademarks and copyright) within the UK.

Rather nicely, the IP Office website lets you search their database of registered Trademarks, and thus with TfL and the Mayor’s office beginning to increase the rhetoric on electic vehicles, it seems an apt time to see what activity there has been on this front at the IP Office in recent months. As Oyster demonstrated, branding can be important, and play a crucial part in the image that a scheme conveys.

The end of January, it seems, bought a flurry of activity in this area from TfL. Four different trademark applications were made, each of which they indicated would need to cover the various categories that together would make up a complete electronic vehicular charging system.

Those trademarks were Source, E-Source, EV-London and Zoom.

The EV-London request has since been withdrawn, whilst the others have been examined (the checking and consultation process that the IP Office go through with Trademark requests) so – unless withdrawn – will likely be confirmed by the IP Office shortly.

Obviously these trademarks may ultimately bear no relation to the final branding of London’s charging points, but they do give an interesting insight into the current thinking – with two of those brands being relatively similar, it certainly seem’s that the word “Source” is on many people’s minds.


Thanks to Alex4D for the spot.

ADDENDUM: For those interested in the specific areas of coverage requested for each trademark they were as follows:

Class 09

Vehicle battery charging apparatus and equipment; electric apparatus for charging vehicle batteries; charging systems for electric powered vehicles; encoded or magnetic charge cards, including such cards for use in relation to the payment of electricity for vehicles; parts and fittings for all the aforesaid goods.

Class 12

Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land; electrically powered vehicles; parts and fittings for all the aforesaid goods.

Class 36

Issuing of tokens of value; the issuing of pre-paid and stored value cards; the issuing of vouchers relating to electricity; electronic payment services relating to power for vehicles.

Class 37

Servicing, maintenance and repair services; servicing, maintenance and repair of electric vehicles; servicing, maintenance and repair of vehicle battery charging systems for electric powered vehicles.

Class 39

Electricity storage; electricity distribution; electricity supply services; storage, distribution and supply of power for recharging electric vehicles.

Written by John Bull
John Bull is the Editor of London Reconnections. A transport journalist and historian, his writing often focuses on the political or strategic challenges facing London's transport network and beyond.