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Farmer That Trump Branded a Pig is Scotsman of the Year

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Media release: 3 December 2012

Farmer That Trump Branded a Pig is Named Scotsman of the Year

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Farmer Michael Forbes has been awarded the honour of Scotsman of the year at the 2012 Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Awards. Forbes had been vilified by tycoon Donald Trump, who said the farmer and fisherman – who refused to sell his land to the billionaire – “lives like a pig” and was a “disgrace to Scotland”.

Forbes’ David-and-Goliath battle against Trump’s plans to build a luxury resort on one of Britain’s last stretches of coastal wilderness is documented in Anthony Baxter’s film You’ve Been Trumped, released in New Zealand cinemas this Thursday, 6 December.

“We are absolutely delighted for Michael, who has conducted himself with such dignity during these trying years.” said Anthony Baxter, director of You've Been Trumped.

Forbes received his award at a glittering black-tie ceremony in Edinburgh at Prestonfield. Other award winners included tennis star Andy Murray, but Forbes pipped them all to the top honour. Previous winners of the Top Scot award have included writers JK Rowling, Alexander McCall Smith and Ian Rankin, six-time Olympic Gold medallist Sir Chris Hoy and international singing sensation Susan Boyle.

A spokesperson for the organizers say it is the first time the Top Scot award has been won by a “non-celebrity” and that Forbes won the public vote by “a clear margin.”

“Perhaps the Award will lay to rest once and for all the claims of both Mr Trump and First Minister Alex Salmond that there is widespread public support for tearing up a protected conservation area to build a luxury course for jet-setting golfers.”

During the making of You've Been Trumped, Baxter and his producer Richard Phinney were arrested after asking Donald Trump's greens keeper why bulldozers had cut off water to Forbes and his 86-year-old mother Molly for more than a week. Later Donald Trump called Baxter a “stupid fool” on twitter and tried to get BBC to stop its broadcast of the film.

Following its premiere at the HotDocs Film Festival in Toronto, You’ve Been Trumped went on to play at over 40 film festivals word wide, racking up 10 major awards. A campaign to name Michael Forbes Top Scot gained momentum after the broadcast of You've Been Trumped in the UK – a screening that was viewed by over a million people, despite Trump's legal team’s best attempts to block it.

Since the construction of the first of two golf courses, completion of the rest of the proposed development, including the luxury accommodation, has been put on hold. The billionaire blames the proposed offshore wind farm for the lack of progress, stating this would compromise the views from the resort.

ENDS

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