Donald Trump effigy on pyre for Hogmanay on Lewis

An efegy of Donald Trump will be placed in a Hogmanay pyre in Lewis. Picture; PA
An efegy of Donald Trump will be placed in a Hogmanay pyre in Lewis. Picture; PA
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Hogmanay revellers are preparing to burn an effigy of Donald Trump on the island of Lewis where the US president elect’s mother grew up.

The plan to bring in the new year by burning a likeness of the New York billionaire has been hatched by John Norgrove, the father of Linda Norgrove – the Scottish aid worker who lost her life in Afghanistan.

The Trump effigy was to be joined on a large Hogmanay pyre by likenesses of Russian president Vladimir Putin, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and former Ukip leader Nigel Farage.

Norgrove and his wife Lorna sent an email titled “Hogmanay Bonfire – Burning the Fascists” inviting islanders to the event in the tiny Mangersta settlement on the Isle of Lewis where they live.

“If you’re able and willing, do come along to our Hogmanay bonfire in Mangersta; you’d be very welcome,” the email said.

“This year, on top of the bonfire, we will be burning effigies of those fascists who have despoiled 2016 and look like despoiling the years to come. Especially for the poor and underprivileged but, in actuality, for all of us.

“We will have the half-Hebridean prime tosser Trump flanked by Vladi Pukin and that North Korean chappie. Behind and above will be our very own Nigel’s visage wafting in the breeze atop a thin weedy pink column.

“Kick-off is 11pm when the bonfire will hopefully be ignited with the aid of copious amounts of volatile fossil fuels and a zip wire guided rocket. But do come along any time after 9. Some food available. Bring your own drinks. Bring your friends. Kids welcome.

“For sensible drivers, accommodation available in bothy, wheelhouse, beds inside and even in pods. Book ahead, first come, first served.”

It added: “Make this Hogmanay one to remember. Don’t spend it alone in the house with the telly on in the background – whoop it up outside with friends in Mangersta.”

As he prepared to build the effigies, Norgrove said he didn’t think the Trump relations who still live on Lewis were aware of his plans.

“I don’t think Donald Trump’s relatives know about it yet, but I am sure they will do,” Norgrove said.

Trump’s mother Mary MacLeod was born to a Gaelic-speaking fisherman and his wife in 1912. She lived at Tong, outside Stornoway, around 40 miles from Mangersta.

A native Gaelic speaker, she travelled to New York as a young woman. There she met and married Trump’s father Frank, a successful builder and son of German immigrants.

She died in New York aged 88 in 2000.

Burning effigies of political figures has proved controversial in the past. In 2014, plans to burn effigies of Alex Salmond as part of the East Sussex village of Lewes’ bonfire celebrations caused anger.

The two effigies of the former SNP leader were withdrawn from the celebrations after protests on social media. At the time, complaints were made to Sussex Police about the portrayal of Salmond.

The police released a statement saying “no criminal offence had occurred”.

Norgrove admitted that some might find his plans “a bit distasteful” but added: “It is a bit of fun. We have had a really bad year with hard-right populist elements on the rise and it strikes me that this will be rather cathartic. We are calling it a bonfire of the fascists.”

Norgrove and his wife run the Linda Norgrove Foundation, a charity dedicated to the memory of their daughter.

Linda Norgrove was kidnapped in Afghanistan in September 2010 and killed the following month when US Navy Seals stormed her captors’ base in an attempt to rescue her.

An inquiry found that the 36-year-old aid worker was killed by the blast from a grenade that was thrown by one of the American soldiers.