Donald Trump 'like a spoilt child' says You've Been Trumped film-maker

Anthony Baxter said Donald Trump was used to getting his own way
Image caption Anthony Baxter said Donald Trump was used to getting his own way

"Donald Trump seems to me like a bit of a spoilt child, someone who is used to getting his own way," film-maker Anthony Baxter told BBC Radio Scotland's Movie Cafe

He is not a big fan of the US billionaire.

And after years of documenting the battles between the tycoon and some of the residents who live near his Menie Estate golf development in Aberdeenshire, Trump is not a big fan of Baxter.

He repeatedly said Baxter was "not a real journalist" when he tried to ask questions at press conferences and has called his documentary film "a failure", though Trump claims not to have seen it.

Baxter said that in all the time he had followed Trump in Scotland he had "never heard him say please or thank you".

He said Trump was used to "pushing things through and saying something is popular and it being reported as fact".

It was the overwhelmingly positive coverage of the plans for the Menie Estate that first alerted Baxter to the story.

Bizarre way

The property tycoon bought the site on the north east coast, about eight miles north of Aberdeen, in 2005 and submitted an application to build two 18-hole golf courses along with a luxury hotel, 500 private houses and about 1,000 holiday homes.

It was claimed that construction of the Trump International Golf Links (TIGL) would create more than 6,000 jobs.

Baxter said the Aberdeen newspapers were talking about it "as if it was the second coming of oil".

Image caption Michael Forbes was described by Trump as "living like a pig"

The film-maker was living about 40 miles away in Montrose in Angus, after moving from London where he had worked for the BBC and Channel Four news.

He said he felt it was "a bizarre way of reporting the story".

Baxter felt local people like Michael Forbes, who objected to the development, were "caricatured" as narrow-minded and objectionable.

In the film, Trump is shown being contemptuous of Forbes whose house he described as "slum-like" and "disgusting" and whom he said "lives like a pig".

Baxter, who like Trump is proud to say that his mother was Scottish, got to know the community where Trump was planning to build his resort.

He found that as well as wanting to protect their homes and way of life, they also had a passion for the environment.

The Menie Estate includes a stretch of sand dunes which form part of an area of special scientific interest.

Baxter described the site as "unique in Europe".

"This is our equivalent of the Amazon rain forest," he said.

"They are the crown jewels of our natural heritage. And once these things are gone they are gone."

Image caption Mr Trump's golf course opens in July

The development of the Trump resort required the "stabilisation" of the dunes, destroying their scientific value says Baxter.

"That is the worst thing you could do, put marram grass down on the dunes, because that stops them from moving.

"That is why they are so unique.

"They tell scientists a great deal about the interaction between the sea and the coast.

"Once you stabilise the dunes, that moving, breathing, living thing just can't survive."

Baxter's documentary - "You've been Trumped" - has won awards at a number of film festivals but has struggled to get distribution in cinemas.

The film-maker said that he found a lot of doors closed to him when he started to make the film and one commissioning editor said he "would need a good lawyer".

Meanwhile, the Trump dream of two world-class golf courses, a hotel and holiday homes has landed in the rough.

Image caption The sand dunes are part of a site of special scientific interest

Just one golf course has been built, with Trump blaming the prospect of wind turbines being built off the coast for not continuing with the rest of the development.

Michael Forbes and the other residents have not left their homes but they have found it incredibly stressful, said Baxter.

His film has already had a limited release but a new version is to be screened across Scotland in July to coincide with the opening of the Trump golf course.

"What we are working on now is a major release of the film in July, which is going to happen.

"It will take in the Filmhouse, the GFT, the DCA and also St Andrews, the birthplace of golf.

"We are timing the release to coincide with the opening of the golf course because we think it is important anyone who reads the coverage of that story knows the facts of the environmental impact on this land."

BBC Radio Scotland Movie Cafe - Thursday 10 May at 1315 and on the iplayer

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