NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Donald Trump criticised Glenfiddich over Michael Forbes award

Michael Forbes and Donald Trump
Image caption Michael Forbes, left, has opposed Donald Trump's plans

Donald Trump has said Glenfiddich should be "ashamed" of honouring a man who rose to prominence as a result of his battle against the US tycoon's golf resort project in Aberdeenshire.

Michael Forbes - who refused to sell his land to Trump - scooped the Top Scot prize in a public vote for the whisky brand's Sprit of Scotland award.

Mr Trump said tennis player Andy Murray would have been more deserving.

William Grant and Sons, which owns the brand, said it was a public vote.

Mr Trump said: "Michael Forbes totally lost his battle, in that he tried to stop the Trump Organisation and its many supporters from building what is now recognised as one of the greatest golf courses in the world.

"To think that a product like Glenfiddich would recognise a man like Michael Forbes, who lives in a property which I have accurately described in the past as a total pigsty, a man who loves the attention he has gotten because of his so-called fight with Donald Trump, would receive an award over someone like Andy Murray.

"Glenfiddich's choice of Michael Forbes, as Top Scot, will go down as one of the great jokes ever played on the Scottish people and is a terrible embarrassment to Scotland.

"I make a pledge that no Trump property will ever do business with Glenfiddich or William Grant and Sons."

However, a William Grant and Sons spokesperson said: "We understand that there may have been some confusion and misunderstanding concerning the structure and running of the Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Awards.

"Working with Scotsman Publications as our media partner, Glenfiddich established the awards 15 years ago. From the outset it was made clear that winners would be chosen by public vote.

"Top Scot is a totally open category in which the people of Scotland can vote for whomsoever they choose and Glenfiddich has no influence on this decision.

"In the history of these awards, we are not aware of the Top Scot award causing any offence or upset to anyone and it is not our intention to do so now. These awards were set up to give the people of Scotland a vote and we must respect their decision."

Mr Forbes featured heavily in the You've Been Trumped documentary.

Design work for a second golf course close to the Trump International Links is now under way.

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