Donald Trump UK visit: Everything you need to know, from when he will arrive to who he is expected to meet

Ben Riley-Smith
Mrs May was the first foreign leader to visit the US president, in January 2017 - AFP

President Donald Trump will meet the Queen, Theresa May and visit Scotland when he visits Britain later this week, with dinner at Blenheim Palace and a stay at the US Ambassador’s residence also on the agenda.

His wife Melania will join him on the visit and will spend the day with Philip May, as the US President and the Prime Minister hold bilateral talks over a working lunch at Chequers. 

Read on to find out when the trip is happening, who he'll be meeting, reactions to the announcement and a summary of Mr Trump's relationship with Theresa May. 

Inside Theresa May and Donald Trump's not-so-special relationship

When is Donald Trump visiting the UK?

The US leader’s long-delayed trip will be from Thursday July 12 to Sunday July 15; while it was originally due to last just 24 hours, it was later extended.

A White House delegation led by Joe Hagin, deputy chief of staff, flew in to the UK at the end of June to scope out venues and finalise plans. 

Mr Hagin was one of the organisational masterminds behind Mr Trump’s summit with Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, in Singapore. He recently announced he will soon leave the White House.

Days before the visit, the US President said the UK was in "turmoil", amid resignations in the Conservative party over Theresa May's Chequers deal.

Donald Trump gesture while telling the media the UK was in "somewhat turmoil" on the South Lawn of the White House on Tuesday Credit: Yuri Gripas/Bloomberg

He added it is for the British people to decide if Theresa May should stay on as Prime Minister and suggested he will meet Boris Johnson during his visit to the UK.

Speaking on the White House lawn, the US President said that Mr Johnson is "a great friend of mine" and suggested that his meeting with Vladimir Putin will be "easier" than his meeting with Mrs May.

What's on the itinerary?

Mr Trump arrives in the UK on board Air Force One on Thursday afternoon, straight from the Nato summit in Brussels where he is expected to confront the US's European allies over levels of defence spending.

That evening the President and his wife Melania will then be guests of honour at a dinner for around 100 guests in the spectacular setting of Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire.

The monumental 18th-century country house, built for the first Duke of Marlborough as a reward for his military victories, was the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, a personal hero of the President.

The event will begin with a military ceremony in the Great Court of the Palace, where the bands of the Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards will play the Liberty Fanfare, Amazing Grace, and the National Emblem.

Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, where the Prime Minister will host President Trump and the First Lady for a black tie dinner Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Hosted by the Prime Minister, guests at the dinner will include leaders of UK business sectors including financial services, travel, creative industries, food and drink, engineering, tech, infrastructure, pharmaceuticals and defence.

Downing Street said the dinner was intended to "celebrate the strong business links between our two countries" at a time when the UK is hoping to strike a free trade deal with the US following Brexit.

During dinner, the Countess of Wessex's Orchestra will perform a series of classic British and American music hits. And on his departure, Mr Trump will be "piped out" by the Royal Regiment of Scotland.

The President and his wife will spend Friday night at the US Ambassador's London residence Winfield House, in Regent's Park.

The gates of the US Ambassador's residence Winfield House, in Regent's Park, London Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

Protesters will be kept away but it is possible that the President may be able to hear not only noise from any demonstrations on the streets outside, but also the call to prayer from the Central Mosque next door and the growls of lions and tigers at nearby London Zoo.

Mrs May and Mr Trump will visit an unnamed defence site to view a demonstration of UK military capabilities, with a strong stress on integrated UK-US military training.

They will move on to Chequers for a working lunch and bilateral talks on a range of international issues, while Mr May and Mrs Trump take part in a separate schedule on Friday morning and early afternoon.

The US First Lady could visit a British school and talk to children about the dangers of cyber bullying, according to a source familiar with the talks. 

Melania Trump met children from Cincinnati Children's Hospital in February Credit: REUTERS/ John Sommers II

British figures have proposed the First Lady visits a school as part of her ‘Be Best’ campaign, designed to teach children about “the importance of social, emotional, and physical health”. 

This would be the First Lady's first trip abroad since her hospitalisation for a kidney procedure in May. Melania was unable to accompany her husband to the G7 summit in Canada or to the Singapore summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, both of which took place last month.

Trump-Kim summit | Read more

Will Donald Trump meet the Queen?

After spending the first part of Friday with Mr May, Mrs Trump is expected to rejoin her husband for their visit to meet the Queen at Windsor. The Duke of Edinburgh is not expected to meet the US First Couple.

Trump has repeatedly said how much his Scottish mother admired Her Majesty. The Queen has met every sitting US President since 1945.

US Ambassador Woody Johnson has said Mr Trump will meet the Queen during his visit, telling Sky News the President's team were currently working on "various scenarios" for the visit.

Asked by interviewer Kay Burley if that involved a meeting with the Queen, he said: "Yes. Yes, I mean he has to see the head of state.

The Queen and Prince Philip greet former US President Barack Obama outside Windsor Castle in 2016 Credit: JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

"Putting his foot on the ground of British soil is job one – very, very important, very symbolic. Meeting Her Majesty is the most important thing, because she is head of state."

UK officials have played down the likelihood of either Prince Harry or Prince William meeting Mr Trump with their wives, though a decision is down to Buckingham Palace. 

The President and the First Lady will fly on Friday evening to Scotland, where they are expected to visit both Trump Turnberry and Trump International Golf Links Scotland. 

Further details on their schedule north of the border are not yet available, but it is understood that there will be limited Government involvement in what was being described as a private element of the official visit. Mrs May is not believed to have any plans for travel to Scotland. 

Donald Trump at the Trump International Golf Links course in Aberdeenshire Credit: AFP PHOTO / Andy Buchanan

On Sunday, Mr Trump is expected to move on to Finland ahead of his keenly-awaited summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki on July 16.

The White House press secretary originally let slip the date of Mr Trump's trip in April in a press conference for journalists’ children to mark America’s ‘Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day’. 

Friday July 13 was initially chosen as the date of the trip as Mr Trump, who is known not to enjoy long-distance travel, is in Brussels for a Nato meeting on July 11 and 12. 

Mr Trump is understood to have personally approved the visit after weeks of careful negotiations between his staff, Number 10 and the UK embassy in Washington. 

The visit offers a chance for Mrs May to improve her personal relationship with the US president, which figures close to both leaders privately acknowledge is not especially warm. UK aides believe that pomp and ceremony will help foster a warmer relationship with the US president. 

Yet it also triggered renewed fears of mass protests – one of the reasons Mr Trump has delayed coming to Britain for so long according to US and UK sources.  

Anti-Trump protests

More than 150,000 people have registered their interest in attending a protest against the US President's visit on July 13.

The march will begin at 2pm, outside the BBC building in Portland Place. The demonstrators will then march to Trafalgar Square, where a rally will be held from 5pm until 7pm.

The 'Trump Baby' blimp that will fly over London on Friday 13 Credit: REUTERS/Simon Dawson

Agiant balloon depicting Donald Trump as an angry, orange baby will fly near Parliament during the event.

Permission for the 20ft (6m) high inflatable, dubbed "Trump Baby", to rise above Parliament Square Gardens for two hours on the morning of Friday July 13 has been granted to protesters by the Greater London Authority.

The move came after more than 10,000 people signed a petition calling for the inflatable to be given permission to fly.

Will Donald Trump visit London?

Mr Trump is expected largely to avoid the capital, in a move that would minimise his exposure to the protests that are expected. 

He will not be invited to address both Houses of Parliament – an honour that has been accorded to previous US presidents – because of opposition from John Bercow, the Commons speaker.

Last November Mr Bercow said that addressing the Commons was "an earned honour and in my view he (Trump) has not earned that honour".

A spokesman for the Speaker’s Office told The Daily Telegraph: “Mr Speaker’s views on this subject are a matter of public record. In any case, no request to address both Houses of Parliament has been received.”

The trip will not be the full state visit offered to Mr Trump just days after his inauguration, for which a date has yet to be set. Instead, it will be a 'working visit'.

May and Trump meeting timeline

A Downing Street source has made it clear that the US President "must not meet Farage" in the talks over the itinerary.

Nigel Farage, the former UK Independence Party leader, added that he had been told the UK Government had made it clear that it did not want Mr Trump to meet with him during his visit "through the normal protocol channels".

He said: "I understand that through the normal protocol channels established between [the countries] ahead of a visit that they are very keen - almost paranoid I was told - that he [Trump] doesn't meet me.”

The US President will not have time to meet Jeremy Corbyn during his visit. The Labour leader previously said he wanted to talk to Mr Trump about his "problems with Mexicans and Muslims" when he visits the UK.

Ed Miliband, Mr Corbyn's predecessor as Labour leader, met President Obama when he made a state visit to the UK in 2011.

Other elements, such as whether Mr Trump will meet military figures, are understood to remain up in the air.

In brief | Donald Trump on the UK

Security surrounding Trump's visit

Police are expected to supply up to 10,000 officers to protect the US President on his visit, with counter-terrorism divisions on alert during the tour.

Hundreds of riot vans will reportedly be on hand to prevent the planned march in London from becoming violent and the President will be accompanied by police cars and motorbikes while travelling by road.

Scotland Yard have said: "We are preparing for a multi-faceted policing and security operation, involving the protection and movement of the president.

"The requirements of this complex operation need to be balanced with the right of individuals to a freedom of speech."

Downing Street has confirmed that the Treasury will cover the policing costs if the President visits Scotland.

The pledge came after the Scottish government’s new justice secretary Humza Yousaf said it was "completely unacceptable" to expect Scottish taxpayers to pay for a visit planned by the UK government. The interim chief constable of Police Scotland Iain Livingtone has predicted the visit could require up to 5,000 police offers, costing £5 million.

Treasury secretary Liz Truss tweeted a statement verifying the Treasury bear the cost, adding: "As you are aware, policing is a devolved matter in Scotland.

"However, on an exceptional basis, I can confirm that the Treasury would provide a ring-fenced funding of up to £5m to cover the costs incurred by Police Scotland should a visit from the President be confirmed."

Reactions to the announcement

Boris Johnson, the former Foreign Secretary, said the news was “fantastic” when it was first announced, but senior Labour figures warned that critics will not hold their tongues during the trip. 

Sadiq Khan, Labour’s London Mayor, said following the announcement: “If he comes to London, President Trump will experience an open and diverse city that has always chosen unity over division and hope over fear. He will also no doubt see that Londoners hold their liberal values of freedom of speech very dear.”

The pair have previously clashed publicly, with Mr Trump tweeting criticism of Mr Khan’s comments after the London Bridge terror attack.

Mr Trump unexpectedly pulled out of a 'working visit' in February to open the new US embassy in London, saying he was not a “big fan” of the deal Barack Obama struck for the building.

However US and UK sources have suggested concerns over protests in London and continued hostility to a visit from the Labour leadership was a bigger reason for the cancellation.

Mr Johnson tweeted: “FANTASTIC news that President Donald Trump will at last come to Britain on 13 July.  Looking forward to seeing our closest ally and friend on the GREATest visit ever.”

Trump's relationship with May

Emmanuel Macron’s three-day state visitto America in April, where the French and US leaders heralded a new “special relationship”, has cast the May-Trump relationship in a harsh light. 

There are concerns in Government that Mrs May's clashes with Mr Trump have helped Emmanuel Macron, the French President, develop a closer relationship with the US President.

A Cabinet source said: "There is genuine concern that Theresa May has mishandled the special relationship and allowed Emmanuel Macron to get ahead of us. We are trying to play catch up."

Donald Trump and Emmanuel Macron's 'special relationship'

Nigel Farage, the Ukip leader, told The Daily Telegraph: "One of the reasons that we are way behind the French is because we have got senior Labour figures who want to have mass street protests in London.

"We shot ourselves in the foot with Sadiq Khan and sent a message that the President is not welcome here."