CITY residents have been ‘concerned’ by Oxford University’s bid to trademark the word ‘Oxford’, councillors will be told tonight.

Green Party councillors could bring a motion to the city council meeting’s tonight, asking colleagues to oppose Oxford University’s bid to register ‘Oxford’ for a ‘very wide range of activities’.

The application was made by Oxford University Press (OUP), on behalf of the university.

OUP said it submitted the application as a ‘precautionary step’ in response to ‘ongoing uncertainty around Brexit’.

Dick Wolff, Green Party councillor, will say those including the ‘provision of training, downloadable or printed documents, sporting and cultural activities and so on’.

He will warn the council that ‘its own activities, and those of its trading companies, could be impacted should the application be successful’.

The council’s housing company is called Oxford City Housing Group and its trading company is operated under the name Oxford Direct Services.

Rev Wolff will say: “This council notes the concern of residents and businesses that registering the word ‘Oxford’ could negatively impact on the freedom of other organisations to utilise the word and associated ‘brand’ in its own products and services without risking challenge or incurring a fee.”

The deadline for objections to the application closed in December.

The university has said it will only pursue a claim if it ‘believes its rights are being infringed’.

It is understood the exclusive rights over the ‘Oxford’ name was lodged in March 2018 but it was later filed online after a change to the application.

The products that OUP has sought to trademark include maps, tickets, newspapers and journals.

The bid was unpopular with residents, with a poll recording that 83 per cent of readers were opposed to it.

The trade mark would not necessarily mean any difference for people using ‘Oxford’ in print or on products.

If a legal case was brought by OUP, it would be decided whether there was a confusion with the owner of the trademark.

Officially, the applicant is ‘The Chancellor Masters and Scholars of the University of Oxford, trading as Oxford University Press’.

It already owns four other registered trademarks.

They include images of shields, registered in 1982, which states, in Latin, ‘Dominus Iluminatio Mea’ (‘The Lord is my light’).

A trademark is different to copyright, because the latter is a automatically given to people who have created something.

The city council’s meeting will be held at Oxford Town Hall tonight from 5pm.

Councillors’ motions have been submitted ahead of the meeting; Rev Wolff’s is the fifth on a list of six.