A six-metre high blimp in the likeness of Donald Trump will fly over London during his visit in July, if a group of protesters get their way.
‘Trump Baby’ is a giant helium blimp in the shape of a baby with Donald Trump’s face and a mobile phone in its hand.
Leo Murray is one of the group of friends who masterminded the blimp, and is currently in discussions with City Hall for permission to fly it in Parliament Square on Friday July 13, when Trump visits London.
“We can’t possibly have Donald Trump visit the UK without massive protests,” says Mr Murray, 41.
“He’s a frightening man, but also a giant angry baby”
“He’s literally snatching babies from their parents and locking them in cages. You have to protest that.
“But one of the things we’ve learned about Donald Trump is moral outrage has no effect on him, he has no shame. The only way you can shame him is by attacking his ego.
“He’s very tetchy about people pointing out his extremely small hands so we thought we better do that, and he doesn’t like to be mocked.”
Mr Murray and his friends, who previously organised a protest around Trump’s inauguration, came up with the design for Trump Baby and paid £3,500 for a balloon company to bring it to life.
“He’s a frightening man, but he’s also a giant angry baby,” says Mr Murray.
Over £10,000 raised
Image: Trump Baby
Filling the blimp with helium costs £800 time, so the group began crowdfunding to raise enough cash for them to cover the manufacturing costs and get it airborne.
They set out to raise £5,000 but the crowdfunder is currently on over £10,000.
Mr Murray has big plans for the extra money.
“We think that we’re now going to send Trump Baby on tour around the world, we’ve had lots of emails from people asking if Trump Baby can go to them,” he says.
“We’re hopefully going to arrange an itinerary and Trump Baby is going to follow little Donald around the world, embarrassing him wherever he goes.”
He also plans to send the blimp to Scotland on Saturday 14 June when Trump visits his golf course in Turnberry.
A mock-up of the blimp flying over Parliament. Image: Trump Baby
Mr Murray says that when he first approached City Hall for permission to fly the blimp over London, he was told that it didn’t fit the criteria of a protest.
“They said it was art, and a protest was a gathering of people with banners and placards,” he said.
“The V&A had a whole exhibition on inflatables as protest so I sent them a link to that, which I don’t think they appreciated!”
“I think this is the archetypal piece of protest art,” he added. “It could feature in a future V&A exhibition on protest.”
They denied his request, but he started a petition asking Sadiq Khan to grant permission.
It secured 7,772 signatures and Mr Murray was invited back in for a meeting at City Hall.
“They’re imposing a few extra conditions, we need stewards in hi-vis vests and barriers and stuff,” he said.
“Trump Baby has to be static, we’re not allowed to walk him around. We’re in conversation with the Metropolitan Police about how to do this safely.”
Mr Murray will find out on Friday whether he’s allowed to fly the blimp in Parliament Square.
Mayor ‘supports peaceful protests’
"A member of the Mayor's city operations team met with the creators of the blimp to discuss their proposal, and particularly the operational aspect of their application given we are aware that a number of large demonstrations are likely to take place at that time,” said City Hall in a statement.
“The Mayor supports the right to peaceful protests and understands that this can take many different forms.
“His main priority is the safety of all Londoners and visitors to our city, so we are working in very close coordination with the Metropolitan Police and other key agencies to ensure all protests are carried out in a safe and secure way.
“A decision on whether this proposal can go ahead will be made in due course."