Psychics Claire Stone and Alexandra Wenman are due to appear in the High Court following a dispute to the rights to teach ‘Archangel Alchemy’ courses.
Stone, of Merseyside, boasts a career as ‘psychic to the stars’, having appeared on television providing readings to celebrities including reality TV star Dani Dyer, as well as lending her skills to writing best-selling spiritual book ‘The Female Archangels’. In July, she began teaching online ‘metaphysical education’ courses under the brand name Archangel Alchemy, aiming to connect customers with their ‘own guardian angel’. Consequently, she filed to trade mark the brand name in October.
However, shortly after Stones trade mark application, Wenman, former magazine journalist, began marketing and offering a new, similar service under the same name. Wenman claims she has operated under the name Archangel Alchemy for over ten years, offering spiritual training and workshops since 2010. Furthermore, Wenman sought help of a brand consultant and agent in 2019 to pursue book publication under the disputed name.
Upon release of Wenman’s new course, Stone has claimed in the High Court that Wenman has infringed her business title. Wenman’s barrister, Chris Hall, has defended her by offering proof of her longstanding career trading under the name and accusing Stone of trying to pass herself off as being linked to Wenman’s established career. Additionally, Hall argued that the trade mark is invalid as ‘Archangel Alchemy’ is a common term used in the psychic community. Stone seeks to claim damages and stop Wenman trading under the brand name. On the other hand, Wenman argues to have herself ‘sustained loss and damages’.
The case came to court in the week commencing the 16th of November for a pre-trial hearing. Pre-trial court documents comment that an average consumer is likely to be confused as to who is providing any ‘Archangel Alchemy’ course they seek to participate in, due to their similarity in name and nature. Alternatively, they could assume there is a commercial link between the courses provided by each woman. Judge Richard Hacon said that ultimately the dispute would come down to ‘who got there first’.
The case is set to reappear before the High Court at a forthcoming date.
By Ellie King, student for Southampton Solent University