Nearly 250,000 activists descended on the streets of central London yesterday to protest Donald Trump’s visit to the UK, organisers said.
Protesters marched through the capital carrying placards reading “Dump Trump” and “Star Spangled Gobs***”.
Aerial images showed the streets of central London from Portland Place to Trafalgar Square packed with tens of thousands of people taking part.
Stop Trump, the group which organised the biggest march, said that there were 250,000 people taking part.
The day began with the unveiling of the Trump baby blimp in Parliament Square, which was crowdfunded by campaigners furious that Mr Trump was being welcomed to the UK.
The balloon, which depicts Mr. Trump wearing a nappy and carrying a mobile phone, was later pictured among the marching crowds.
Later, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn addressed crowds at a rally in Trafalgar Square and was received with enthusiasm.
“We are asserting our right to demonstrate, our right to free speech,” he said.
Mr. Corbyn said Sadiq Khan deserved support and not condemnation. “Human rights belong to all of us,” he added.
Mr. Corbyn said the message of the demonstration was “one of solidarity”. He added: “When we unite together with common objectives, we can all win.”
The crowd applauded him warmly and chanted “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn”.
Into the evening, several protesters jumped into the fountain in the centre of the square to cool off and kids followed suit – splashing in the shallow water.
Braver members of the crowd climbed up to the top and protested from there.
While activists were making their feelings known in central London, the President was meeting with Theresa May at Chequers for talks on trade, Brexit and NATO. He later took tea with the Queen at Windsor Castle.
The leaders gave a joint press conference in which they stood side-by-side to shore up the relationship between the UK and the US. It came after Mr. Trump, in an interview with The Sun newspaper, launched into an extraordinary criticism of the Prime Minister which overshadowed the second day of his UK visit.
The president savaged Mrs. May’s Brexit proposals and warned they would likely kill off any chance of a future trade deal with the US in a bombshell interview. At the press conference, Mr. Trump described the interview as “fake news”.
Between 3,000 and 8,000 people took part in the initial Women’s March which travelled from Portland Place to Parliament Square, arriving there for a rally at 2pm.
Many were seen carrying signs that read “I really care. Do you?” and “Dump Trump.”
People were seen banging pots and pans together as they made their way along the protest route.
Stormy Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti attended the London march and told the BBC: “I think it’s important to send a message to our brothers and sisters here in the UK and around the world that not all Americans support this president; there’s millions of Americans that are outraged by his conduct and by his behaviour.”
James O’Brien from County Mayo was spotted selling Trump toilet paper at Oxford Circus station and said a percentage of money raised from the toilet rolls and would go towards mental health awareness.
Later at 2pm, people began lining up in Portland Place for the Stop Trump protest, the largest march.
Vivian Fowle, who has spent decades protesting a number of issues around the world, told the Standard she came today because she “deplores everything Trump stands for.”
Listing them, she said: “misogyny, racism, separating parents from their children; interfering in domestic politics, being rude to our own elected politicians. The man is appalling.”
Ms Fowle said she was not surprised the president stayed away from London.
“I think he wouldn’t come because he would be fearful. He wouldn’t want to acknowledge that here are thousands and thousands of people who object to him. He will want to go back and say ‘I was in the UK for four days and didn’t see a single protester they all love me’.”
Sharon Lake, and her one-and-a-half year old son Felix, garnered a lot of attention due to the fake cage that has been erected around his buggy.
The cage is in reference to Trump’s recently retracted immigration policies that saw children separated from their parents at the US border and taken to special detention centres.
“Separating children from their parents is about the most offensive thing you can do … along with many of the other offensive things he has done.”
“We are here because I think you need to say something. It’s a friendly protest: we are just saying we don’t agree with this man and his politics.”