CUSTOMERS, retailers and publicans were confused by the use of the Yorkshire white rose on a North Yorkshire brewery’s bottles, they told the High Court today.

Samuel Smith's Brewery, from Tadcaster, is locked in dispute with microbrewery Cropton, from near Pickering, which uses the Yorkshire Regiment's white rose on labels for its Yorkshire Warrior ale, which raises cash for badly wounded soldiers.

Cropton claims the rose is the symbol of Yorkshire and there is no reason why it should not use it, but Samuel Smith’s claims it is an infringement of its trademark and confusingly similar to its rose which it has used since the 1960s.

A steady stream of witnesses for the Tadcaster brewer gave evidence in the London court today about their confusion when they saw the Warrior Ale and its white rose emblem.

Nicholas Taylor, manager of Sinclair's Oyster Bar, a Sam Smith's-run bar in Manchester, said: "When I was shown a photograph of the other product, my initial reaction was that it was a Sam Smith's product.”

Sam Smith's fan Graham Davidson, a musician from Bere Regis, in Dorset, said he immediately jumped to the wrong conclusion about its origin when he saw a photograph of Warrior ale, assuming it was a new Samuel Smith’s product.

The case has been adjourned until Friday.