Michael Forbes (farmer)
|Known for||refusal to sell his land to Donald Trump|
Michael Forbes (born circa 1952) is a farmer, part-time salmon fisherman and quarry worker from near Balmedie in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, who became known after his refusal to sell his land to billionaire Donald Trump, who was planning to build an extensive luxury golf course complex in the area with assistance from the governing SNP Alex Salmond. Forbes's farm, which is said by Trump to be in a state of disrepair, has the words "NO GOLF COURSE" painted on a shed.
He attracted media attention in the United States for standing up to Trump. Forbes has insisted that he will "never sell" his land to Trump despite being offered a payment of £450,000 in addition to a salary of £50,000 per year for an unspecified job. The plans to build the golf complex were rejected in late November 2007 by Aberdeenshire Council but were later called in by the Scottish Government, who gave approval in November 2008. He has been compared to the beachcomber character in the film Local Hero.
In August 2011, contractors hired by Trump fenced off a piece of land belonging to Forbes despite Forbes having the title deeds.
The Trump Organization at one point threatened to try to use a compulsory purchase order to forcibly remove him and his family from their land, as well as other nearby residents. Trump claimed that Forbes' property was a slum that would spoil the view from his new hotel. Forbes retorted that Trump can "take his money and shove it up his arse." The Tripping Up Trump Campaign was formed to challenge the Trump organization on the issue. Hundreds of people bought small interests in Forbes' property and became co-owners, with the intention of making it more difficult to transfer the title to the land.
Forbes and his struggle with Trump features in the award-winning documentary You've Been Trumped, directed by Anthony Baxter and produced by Richard Phinney. His portrait by Alicia Bruce with his wife, Sheila, is held in the National Galleries of Scotland collection. In 2012, Forbes won the 'Top Scot' award at the Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Awards, provoking Trump to criticise Glenfiddich, calling it a "terrible embarrassment to Scotland".
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