Rebekah Vardy trademarks 'Wagatha Christie' phrase despite losing court case

The latest plot twist in the high profile legal battle between Rebekah Vardy and Coleen Rooney could mean the former has the last laugh, as Ian Woods reports

Rebekah Vardy has trademarked the phrase "Wagatha Christie" in a new twist in the footballers' wives saga.

Mrs Vardy, who is married to Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy, lost a high-profile High Court libel battle against Coleen Rooney last year - famously dubbed the 'Wagatha Christie' trial.

The case had been brought against Mrs Rooney, the wife of former Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney, after she posted a self-described “sting operation” on social media to prove Mrs Vardy had been leaking stories about her to the press.

On Wednesday, Saphia Maxamed, owner of London Entertainment, confirmed that her firm has registered “Wagatha Christie” as a trademark on behalf of its client Mrs Vardy.

The move means anyone wishing to use the phrase for commercial purposes will have to get Mrs Vardy's permission - and pay her for it if she agrees.

Rebekah Vardy leaving the Royal Courts Of Justice Credit: Victoria Jones/PA

The trademark covers broadcasting, clothing, non-alcoholic beverages, education and beauty.

In a viral social media post in October 2019, Mrs Rooney, 36, accused Mrs Vardy, 41, of leaking “false stories” about her private life to the press.

The case quickly became nicknamed the 'Wagatha Christie' trial, in reference to the slang term wag – short for ‘wives and girlfriends’, commonly used to describe footballers’ partners – and the name of detective writer Agatha Christie, because of the steps Mrs Rooney took to probe the source of the leaks.

The high-profile court case has already been secured for several dramatisations, including a Channel 4 two-part film titled Vardy v Rooney: A Courtroom Drama, and even a show at London's West End.

The producers of the stage play based on and named after the trial, have insisted that the show will go on – despite Mrs Vardy's trademark of the term.

Vardy v Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial, a “verbatim production” using High Court transcripts from the libel battle, is on at the Ambassadors Theatre in the West End and is set to tour the UK and Ireland next month.

Court artist sketch of Coleen Rooney giving evidence as Rebekah Vardy looks on Credit: Elizabeth Cook/PA

In their statement, the producers used asterisks to alter the play’s name in an apparent reference to the trademark – and the idea they may no longer be able to legally use the term.

The producers statement said: “This story continues to have more twists and turns than an Agatha Christie thriller and this morning’s news that Rebekah Vardy has trademarked the term ‘Wag*tha Chr*stie’ is the latest plot development.

“Performances of Vardy v Rooney: The Wag*tha Chr*stie Trial continue as planned in the West End and on tour and we would be delighted for Mrs Vardy to come and see the show.”

ITV News has contacted representatives for Rebekah Vardy for comment.

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