President Donald Trump has cancelled a trip to London scheduled for next month to open a new embassy, saying he did not want to endorse what he understood was an Obama-era decision to move out of the old one.
The cancellation is a further blow to relations between the allies. More than a year into his presidency, Mr Trump has yet to visit London, with many Britons vowing to protest against a man they see as crude, volatile and opposed to their values on a range of issues.
"[The] reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for 'peanuts,' only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars (AU$1.7 billion)," Mr Trump said in a tweet late on Thursday.
"Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!" Mr Trump said.
But the decision to acquire a new London embassy site on the south bank of the Thames was acutally announced in 2008 under George W Bush, along with the plans to put the old Grosvenor Square site in upscale Mayfair up for sale.
Madame Tussauds stepped in and installed a waxwork Mr Trump outside the embassy on Friday.
Prime Minister Theresa May was the first foreign leader to visit Mr Trump, and they were filmed emerging from the White House holding hands. She later said Mr Trump took her hand in a gentlemanly gesture as they walked down a ramp.
But British officials have been dismayed by some of Mr Trump's pronouncements, particularly a proposed ban on Muslims entering the United States and most recently when Mr Trump rebuked Ms May on Twitter after she criticised him for retweeting British far-right anti-Islam videos.
Ms May's spokesman told reporters Mr Trump was welcome in London and that the invitation to visit had been accepted, although no date agreed. He said the opening of the embassy was a matter for the US government.
Many British politicians have voiced their opposition to Mr Trump being granted a state visit, and say the invite should be recalled.
"Many Londoners have made it clear that Donald Trump is not welcome here while he is pursuing such a divisive agenda," London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who has often exchanged barbs with Mr Trump on social media, tweeted.
"It seems he's finally got the message… [his visit] "without doubt have been met with mass peaceful protests."
British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said opponents such as Mr Khan were putting the relationship with the United States, the biggest investor in Britain, at risk.
The new embassy is a veritable fortress set back at least 30 metres from surrounding buildings and incorporating living quarters for US Marines permanently stationed inside.
The US$1 billion construction was funded by the sale of other properties in London.
Reuters / Newshub.