A small but very vocal group of protestors gathered in Regent’s Park on Thursday evening close to where Donald Trump will be spending the night with the sole of aim of keeping him awake.
Around 150 people armed with placards, drums, vuvuzelas and good old-fashioned lung power intended to make enough noise all night long to reach the ears of the President as he tries to slumber in Winfield House, the residence of the US Ambassador to the UK.
But even though they had gathered around the Presidential Bedtime (Trump is rumoured to be in bed by 6:30pm watching cable news and devouring cheeseburgers, when he’s in the White House anyway) they were instead treated to a fleet of helicopters carrying Trump to Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire for a gala black tie dinner.
There was a carnival feel at the demonstration which included people of all ages and a number parents with their children.
But while the atmosphere was jovial, the placards were not.
Kate, pictured above, told HuffPost UK: “We’re here to exercise our democratic right to protest against everything that Trump stands for.
“His deep lack of compassion for people who are in need of any kind and the way he inflames people’s basest instincts which we all have, but we try to let the better part of ourselves rise to the surface.
“What’s dangerous about this is he’s fostering an animalistic greed and savagery and he’s turning back democracy and civilisation to a frightening degree and we need to resist and not sleepwalk into a situation that we can’t get out of.”
Others were far more succinct.
“I just hope someone will assassinate him. Not me though,” Victoria, a 31-year-old writer said.
With Trump not expected to fly back to Winfield House until much later, the crowd began to thin around 8pm.
Trump and his wife Melania spent the evening at Blenheim Palace where they were greeted by Theresa May - and hundreds of demonstrators.
Addressing the US president in front of an audience of business leaders at Winston Churchill’s birthplace, May insisted that Brexit provides an opportunity for an “unprecedented” agreement to boost jobs and growth.
Noting that more than one million Americans already work for British-owned firms, she told Trump: “As we prepare to leave the European Union, we have an unprecedented opportunity to do more.
“It’s an opportunity to reach a free-trade agreement that creates jobs and growth here in the UK and right across the United States.
“It’s also an opportunity to tear down the bureaucratic barriers that frustrate business leaders on both sides of the Atlantic.
“And it’s an opportunity to shape the future of the world through co-operation in advanced technology, such as artificial intelligence.”
Back in Regent’s Park a few noise-makers remained.
Talia, 31, told HuffPost UK: “It’s not that I expect him to say ‘oh my God, I’ll leave’ it’s just that what he’s doing is morally wrong and what kind of person am I if I say nothing.
“So I have to do it, I have no other choice.”
By 9pm there were more members of the media left than protestors. The Facebook page that organised the event called for “all night noise” but it appeared responsibility for this lay on five people scraping the wire fence with sticks and a lone gentleman with a vuvuzela.
Minutes later a frustrated park official announced over a megaphone: “Come on people, everybody out - we’re locking the gates.”