Doonbeg: The Irish Village Where Trump Can Expect a Hero's Welcome After State Visit Protests, As His Hotel Fuels Economy

Since arriving in London for his state visit on Monday, President Donald Trump has received a less than warm welcome from Britons, who have launched several protests in opposition to his presence in the United Kingdom–and policies in the United States.

However, Trump's luck could soon to change, with residents of one small village in Ireland ready to roll out the welcome mat for the U.S. leader when he arrives on Wednesday.

In Doonbeg, Trump's International Golf Links & Hotel has been credited with creating jobs and fueling the local economy, giving many locals reason to cheer when the president arrives at the hotel this week.

'He is a godsend'

"There will be a big welcome for Donald Trump when he comes to Doonbeg," local councillor Gabriel Keating told Irish newspaper The Independent in a recent interview. "He is the President of the United States, but he is also one of the biggest employers around here," Keating said.

With an economy reported to have been struggling in recent years, many people in the Irish village rely on the roughly 300 jobs that the resort provides during the busy season–more jobs than there are people in Doonbeg.

The Village of Doonbeg in Co Clare prepares for the visit of @realDonaldTrump tomorrow. @pa

— Niall Carson (@niallcarsonpa) June 4, 2019

For one local resident, Senan McCarthy, Trump, regarded as a divisive figure in the U.S. and around the world, is a "godsend."

"It is great that he comes over. Everybody knows him and he has done great things for the village and the West Clare area," McCarthy, who owns Danubio Guest Accommodation, told The Independent. "He is a godsend for the employment in that area."

Photos posted to Twitter by Press Association photographer Niall Carson on Tuesday showed residents of Doonbeg already preparing for Trump's Wednesday visit, with locals pictured carrying U.S. flags and households also flying the star-spangled banner.

Not without opposition...

But while much of the village will be celebrating Trump's visit, the U.S. leader's stay in Doonbeg will not be without controversy, with environmentalists expected to deliver a petition with more than 100,000 signatures to Trump opposing plans for the construction of a "coastal defence" barrier around his hotel.

Organized by Californian conservation group Save the Waves in partnership with Irish NGOs, the petition is expected to be delivered to Doonbeg by the Director of Friends of the Irish Environment (FiE), Tony Lowes.

According to FiE, Trump International Golf Links have applied to construct two coastal defence structures covering around 1 kilometer of ground in length to prevent erosion to the golf course.

Save the Waves, FiE and other groups have warned that moving ahead with plans to build the barrier could have a detrimental impact on the coastal environment.

"We want to emphasize our absolute certainty that the proposed seawalls will destroy the beach in front of them and will increase the rate of erosion on adjacent beaches," said Save the Wales Conservation Programs Manager Trent Hodges. "The only question is the timing—will it happen in a few years or will it happen in a decade or two. It will happen."

The petition is expected to be delivered to the president at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 5, when he arrives in Doonbeg. It is unclear exactly how environmentalists plan to deliver the signatures directly to the U.S. leader.

Trump Hotel, Doonbeg
Irish police officers patrol outside the Trump golf resort as it prepares for the visit of U.S. President Donald Trump on June 4, 2019 in Doonbeg, Ireland. President Trump will use his Trump International golf resort in Doonbeg as a base for his three day stay in Ireland. The resort employs over 300 local people in the area and the village will roll out a warm welcome to the 45th President of the United States. Getty/Charles McQuillan