Voting intention polling straight after a general election is probably the least interesting of any voting intention polling, especially a general election that has produced a decisive result. That goes all the more when two of the main parties have leadership contests, so voters don’t know who is going to lead them or what is going to be on offer. Nevertheless, any tracker needs to start somewhere.

So far we have had three voting intention polls since the general election. The first post-election YouGov poll came out in this morning’s Times, with topline figures of CON 49%(+4), LAB 29%(-4), LDEM 10%(-2), GRN 4%(+1). Fieldwork was over the weekend.

We have also had a first post-election poll from Opinium (fieldwork 15th-17th Jan), which had topline figures of CON 47%(+2), LAB 30%(-3), LDEM 9%(-3), GRN 4%(+1), and BMG (fieldwork 8th-10th Jan) which had figures of CON 44%(-1), LAB 29%(-4), LDEM 11%(-1), GRN 5%(+2).

All of them show a bigger lead for the Conservatives than at last month’s general election, probably no more than a honeymoon and a reflection that Labour don’t currently have a leader.

2,187 Responses to “Post-election voting intention polls”

1 41 42 43 44
  1. Latest YG indy poll, also doesn’t include 16-17 year olds. Omitting an age group of voters doesn’t inspire confidence in a poll!

    Including the full age range would probably add 1% or so to the Yes side.

    Scot Goes Pop also notes the unusual positioning of the indy question -coming after the somewhat confusing question “Generally speaking, do you think Scotland is heading in the right or wrong direction?”

  2. @trevs – ” reciprocal tariff elimination for industrial goods”

    Yes trevs. INDUSTRIAL goods.

    So not zero tariffs……


    “So is the JC is relevant or not?!?”

    Convening the JC is not relevant to whether or not there will be border checks on GB-NI goods, as I’ve explained for the umpteenth time.

    Under the protocol, all goods will be checked, unless the JC decides that are not at risk. This is what you have failed to grasp.

    I cited the 30 day timetable rule as an example of how the opportunities to game to dispute mechanism are limited, as detailed timetables have been laid down in clear language within the WA.

  3. Quite a useful quote from Iana Dreyer –

    “The EU’s approach on these level playing field themes is much more demanding on the UK than on other traditional free trade agreement partners. The ‘prize’ for this would be duty-free quota free goods trade with the EU, something no trading partner has ever achieved.”

    The UK pretence is that we ‘just want the same’ as Japan, Canada, etc, but that is simply untrue. We want a good deal more than they got, but with fewer obligations in return.

  4. BBC 4 had a documentary early tonight titled Royal History`s Biggest Fibs, and Brexiteers watching may have been annoyed by some of Lucy Worsley`s claims.

    A better title would have been England`s Biggest Fibs. But maybe other programmes in the series deal with royalty, whereas tonight`s dwelt on the myths created at the time of England defeating the “invincible” Spanish Armada in 1588.

    Supposedly it was a great victory for England, but it did little to reduce the Spanish Empire; this in spite of Drake`s pirating around the world. So at the end of the C16, England still had no overseas empire.

    Worsley`s contention was that supporters of Elizabeth I created fake news to make her look a powerful monarch. And that the myth was perpetuated by Margaret Thatcher, using some of Elizabeth`s phrases, e.g. in MT`s Iron Lady speeches.

    So just as now, our plucky nation is standing up to the Europeans, but the aim of getting power and success will not be achieved.

    Maybe some will come on UKPR tomorrow and say this was typical anti-Tory BBC in action.

  5. Davwel

    “Supposedly it was a great victory for England, but it did little to reduce the Spanish Empire.”

    Not just that, but the reason it wasn’t a great success was that the Spanish Armada, though badly beaten, was not destroyed, whereas the English Armada that followed was. But nobody knows about the English Armada. Air brushed from history as it was actually a defeat and a humiliation for England at the hands of the Spanish (Europeans) after a seeming success.

    How are those negotiations going with the EU after our “success” in leaving?


    While I don’t think the average voter cares less about the stock market, in fact rather likes it going down because it’s a come-uppance for the better off, I assume the reason the markets are falling is not because of the coronavirus itself but because investors think it will cause a major fall in trade, production and hence big falls in profits of big companies.

    I’m not sure what the distinction is between the market responding “to the coronavirus itself” and responding to its direct financial impacts?

    I have no clue what position Johnson might take on such things, but I would imagine that Trump’s position on an economic downturn caused by collapsed Chinese supply chains would be to say “I was right all along, bring the manufacturing jobs home and we’ll be better off!”. And I would suspect that such a position would be quite popular in an election year…

  7. @oldnat

    “Latest YG indy poll, also doesn’t include 16-17 year olds. Omitting an age group of voters doesn’t inspire confidence in a poll!”


    In one of the demographics discussed earlier we might include pollsters and non-pollsters…

  8. Atypical questions, leading questions and omitting sections of voters more likely to vote for Yes.

    No that’s not suspicious at all.

    Thx Yougov.

  9. Sfreamdrivenandy,
    “I’m wondering what is happening to the house rental market in our area.”

    There have been reports of a pick up in purchases. Maybe they are coming from people who have been renting awaiting the right moment?

    “Most everyone thinks that his time in Education was a disaster and lots of good teachers just left the profession”

    I was discussing teaching recently and realised something I hadnt quite apreciated before. People talk about the merits of grammar schools for the pupils (or not). But what about for the teachers?

    A grammar school was basically stuffed with kids interested in being there and learning. So much easier to control. Therefore much easier for teachers lacking in ability to control kids, but maybe otherwise well up on their subject. More job satisfaction with intelligent engaged classes.

    Abolishing grammars (mostly) will have had the effect of removing a class of teacher from the system, who maybe could not control a state comprehensive class, but could work effectively in a grammar. So maybe that accounted for another 1/5 of teachers leaving the profession.

    Working conditions in state schools are bad and getting worse, and there will be no retention of competent teachers until this changes. Expensive to fix.

    Lets not forget the care system set to collapse, another huge looming liability.

    “a quick push to the sort singapore on thames sort move”

    I dont believe the Uk can survive as singapore on Thames. China has been using exactly the opposite model of protectionism for internal markets. So does the EU, so will every other big player. Its coming.

  10. The Trevors,
    “Let’s pretend EC do wait until the END of transition”

    Pretend if you like. What the EU no doubt has already done is prepare a strategy for each move by the UK. After all, we have given them plenty of time to get ready. They are not the ones who do not know what they want.

    “So if you want it to go the ‘ugly’ route, if you want to eat more US agrif-food products, etc then pop the beret on and cheer for Barnier! If not, the perhaps hope that they ‘blink’ early and often.”

    Your collective reasoning makes no sense. The Uk has to decide what it wants from what the EU has said is possible. That has been the problem for 4 years now. I have repeatedly argued the problem is conservatives want to stay in the EU, but cannot see a way to do this, and so they have stalled…because there is no solution to how to do this and not do this simultaneously.

    “PS Folks still don’t seem to get it. Brexit is not about some 0.1% on a 15y ‘prediction’ of GDP impact – it never was!”

    I quite agree. I have yet to see a forecast including the likely contraction in the Uk economy from industry moving abroad. Those Brexit voting northern penioners are going to get very upset when their children and grand children who have moved south start losing their jobs. (or end up as minimum wage care workers replacing immigrant labour)

    ” European manufacturers have consistently told EU legislators that protection of the SM is their number 1 priority, not protection of the trade surplus to the UK. ”

    I have also yet to see a credible rationale why this trade surplus for the EU will cease. So why would they be worrying about it?

    The Trevors keep saying the Uk will not impose any customs processes between Ireland and the Uk, so its hardly going to impact sales to the UK. Might improve the economic case for the bridge to the mainland.

    But more realistically, the current stated intention over tariffs is to cause mimimum disruption to UK public, so proposed tariffs have been set low. Even if they go up, the nature of goods flow means UK customers are more likely to keep buying than EU ones.

    The Trevors,
    “Next GE will be 2 May 2024 or do you think CON MPs will oust Boris”

    I think we could have another election by the end of the year if this all goes sour. Once the EU has turned down proposals of the sort you suggest, conservative MPs will start to break apart again. It is obvious Johnson has no internal consensus in the party, otherwise he would be appointing remainers to key posts as well as leavers. The fact he hasnt tells us he does not trust them to stay on his message.

    ” I’m clutching my coffee mug but I did hear that a lot of Remainers thought we’d be eating grass by now and had big supplies of straw stashed away”

    Come come, we havnt really left yet. The risk was leaving last year, but we didnt. Conservative MPs prevented it.

    “I accept that some think we’ll capitulate and get a ‘vassal state’ deal”
    I think Johnson has already signed a vassal state deal. All that is left is working out the details.

    ” I assume the reason the markets are falling is not because of the coronavirus itself but because investors think it will cause a major fall in trade, production and hence big falls in profits”

    Whereas I assume it is because of stock speculators expecting the market to fall, so selling before it does to lock in profit.

  11. Danny,
    We are trying to move house at present, nearly been on the market for a year. Dropped the asking price by 7% a few months back. Lost one place that we were after but have found another that suits.
    Not many viewings overall and up until recently all were people looking to downsize.
    Last weekend a young couple with 7 week old baby viewed and say they want to buy but they have their place yet to sell.
    We have a well regarded village primary opposite the entrance to our cul de sac. I can’t understand why we’ve not been overrun by families with school age kids. All I can think is they’re lured away by the hundreds of sparkling new cheek by jowl four and five bedroom homes being built around Crewe by all the big builders.

  12. @ ALEC – ?!?!

    Elimination of (ie zero) tariffs on industrial goods = zero tariff (on some goods)

    #10 said :“EU being willing to offer the US zero tariffs”

    Now I’m happy to admit #10 were a bit naughty on the specific details but an immediate riposte won’t cover the specific details – that was not the purpose[1] of the twitter comments

    Let’s check what Henig said:

    “The EU did not offer the US zero tariffs”

    Err.. actually they did – but just not on everything (and note EU-Canada deal doesn’t cover everything either)

    So is Henig incompetent or dishonest?

    Probably not, but anyone who blindly didn’t at least check the details themselves probably is.

    Henig missed the even naughtier bit in #10’s riposte but that might have deliberate as UK is not insisting EC-EU “level-up” to UK’s “playing field” and he’s perhaps wise enough not to highlight that EC-EU are being bullies (as I doubt that’s going to swing GB public opinion against a PM and team that are standing up to a bully).

    You’d have to be pretty st00pid to be telling Brits that EC-EU are acting like bullies – using their economic size and power to force UK to capitulate. Anyone saying that would surely know it helps Boris when it comes to the time to walk out (remember Brexit was never about 0.1% on a 15yr GDP forecast was it – what was the winning phrase?)

    PS Regarding the JC so change the question to who, what, when and why will the EC-EU do something. GB side won’t do anything – so I’m keen to hear what YOU think they will do (and when and why).

    [1] What do you think the purpose of the twitter riposte was?

    Bloomberg are hardly Brexiteers but they seem to have worked it up but EC-EU and EUphiliacs at home just aren’t listening – they seem to think the bully must win and that we’re a/ bluffing and b/ will capitulate – despite all the evidence (eg removing the ability to extend transition, 3rd purge of anyone ‘Remainy’ or ‘Soft’ from cabinet, Boris+Frost’s speeches, etc) showing we mean it when we say if you don’t want a Canada deal then we’ll go for an Australian deal.

  13. Some interesting information about the UK consultation on new tariffs. The aim is simplification, with indications that they are looking to drop tariffs on goods that are used as inputs or where we have no production interest.

    While this is sensible in economic terms (and will enable price falls in some products like cocoa, oranges etc) a number of trade experts have questioned why you would signal your intention to remove tariffs on such items prior to getting stuck into some pretty hard nosed tariff negotiations. While delivering lower prices is a positive, laying down some of weapons before the battles start is not sensible.

    The other point of note is that HMG has signaled that it wishes to ‘simplify’ the agricultural tariff schedule by switching to ad valoreum (percentage) tariffs only, rather than use any specific tariffs (eg £X per tonne).

    However, for goods with sharp seasonal (and even daily) price movements, this is very complex. It means that the ad valoreum rate would need to change every time prices changed. The specific tariff system is simple, in comparison, because importers can calculate the sale price at which a trade is competitive, with a fixed tariff calculated by weight/volume. meaning that margins can be calculated and planned for in advance.

    A number of industry commentators have said that they don’t think the government is fully aware of the issues around tariff reform, and that there seems to be little understanding of the complexities. Foreign trading partners are also suspicious, with some viewing this ‘reform’ as a way to erect new trade barriers.

    An added complication is that our current tariffs are denominated in euros, and then converted to sterling. The simplest option is to retain this system, although it would be a bit of an embarrassment, so the additional complication of how you redraft our tariff schedules with the ad valoreum equivalent rates while switching currencies just makes everything that bit harder.

  14. Bush gets very close to it towards the end – just change “should” to “when” in the final sentence.

    Terrible analogy to compare signing up to EU’s “unfair” demands, in perpetuity, is like deciding if you want Wi-fi in your hotel room but perhaps a small demographic would think that. Anyway, great to see even the LoC press pointing out the EC-EUs demands are “unfair”.

    I’m not sure if #10 will start pointing out that CPTPP is considered to be “fair” by smaller countries that signed up to it or that Canada stood it’s ground and got a “fair” deal in NAFTA2 (USMCA) – they should point that out to EC-EU but I reckon most Brits are now BOB and “keeping the control we took back” is the simples soundbite that will keep Boris and CON opinion rating high (in E+W at least)

    NB IMO the #10 purpose here is to ensure EC-EU understand that it is not 2019. Boris is not May, Frost is not Robbins, the HoC maths has changed, Brits are BOB, etc. Hence get to the ‘walk out’ and full breakdown asap. From there then I HOPE the EC-EU recalibrate their demands and we can start again – realistically hoping to get MRAs + TRQs (ie current Australia deal) but possibilities either side of that. Oh and “tick tock” of course.

    Boris can sell a FAIR trade deal but he’s been burning every bridge that would lead back to a BAD deal (eg May-Robbins deal) – but the EC-EU and home grown EUphiliacs are yet to “smell the coffee”

  15. @Trevs – I don’t know why you have to insist on arguing black is white. It’s completely pointless, and just ends up making you look stupid, which you clearly are not.

    No 10 has consistently asked the EU for a zero tariffs, zero quotas deal. They have never qualified this. They are asking for our current arrangements on tariffs and quotas to be continued.

    They then claimed that this is what the EU has given or offered other countries, which is simply a l!e.

    It isn’t very bright just sucking up the No 10 spin.

    I saw that Bloomberg link this morning, and it is interesting. Labeling Frost as a true Brexit believer is notable for the lack of reference to his previous belief in the Norway option as the best outcome for the UK, but no matter.

    I think where you go wrong with this is to think in terms of capitulation. That’s not how this is going to work. We’re not going to sign up to the full level playing field stuff, and in return, we’re not going to get the market access we want.

    To help you understand the direction of travel, it’s probably better to flip the soundbites around, so instead of pondering ‘dynamic alignment’, think ‘dynamic access’. The EU will be altering the level of access allowed to the UK to reflect how closely we are sticking to their LPF requirements. We retain the sovereign right to distance ourselves from our biggest market. Everyone is happy.

    A deal on those terms is frankly pretty straightforward, in the scheme of things.We’re not tied into EU standards, and they aren’t tied into allowing market access.

    And yes, the EU will bully us, but you need to bear in mind that they don’t give two hoots whether that helps Johnson’s popularity. Why on earth would they care about the fate of a third countries government?


    ” I can’t understand why we’ve not been overrun by families with school age kids.”

    Eh…maybe it’s you!


  17. I can’t understand why people find this so difficult, except Rambling Trev who seems to revel in counting angels on the head of a pin almost as much as arguing they aren’t actually angels.

    What the EU is saying is;

    Zero Divergence/Zero Barriers,
    More Divergence/More Barriers.

    We have Sovereignty and can choose how much if any Divergence we want but must accept the Barriers it creates.



  18. Maybe it is Peter, but whenever we have a viewing I take the dogs out, so the potential buyers never see me.

  19. Steamdrivenandy,
    ” potential buyers never see me.”

    I am wondering if maybe no one is planning to have any children because of brexit?

  20. @ ALEC – “We’re not going to sign up to the full level playing field stuff”

    Well one thing we can agree on then. Progress! Could you pass that on to Barnier, might speed things up a bit ;)

    However, your guilty of the same “naughtiness” of #10 and Henig when you say:

    “No 10 has consistently asked the EU for a zero tariffs, zero quotas deal”

    You’d need to add a chunk more onto that in order to be fully honest and competent (ie understand the key differences between what EC-EU are offering and what Boris+Frost will accept)

    Frost did explain his broad ‘evolution’ of thoughts on EU in his speech. Since EC-EU insist their 4 freedoms are inseparable “Norway” (as an off-the shelf package) is impossible given we wanted to end freedom of movement. That was taken off the table long ago – something most folks accepted and moved on from.

    Now if the EC-EU want to “copy” bits of “Norway” (eg the fishing bit) then fine – a FAIR deal is possible.

    However, if EC-EU want to cherry pick everything on their terms then it ain’t ‘appening – simples! We can and will “walk” (and probably refocus efforts on US and domestic mitigation/opportunities – note UK’s US trade mandate is coming out shortly after EU trade mandate, pretty obvious sequencing of timing!)

    Anyway, I’m keen to hear from you regarding a specific example of what (and when) EC-EU will actually do something (via JC or otherwise) regarding their view that we’ve broken the NI protocol in the WA. As an “expert” on the details then I’m sure you’ve thought that through and can “educate” me. Bonus point if you can go on to explain what Team GB will do about, what and how long any kind of solution will take (and other related issues – such as who else in World (including say the French) would give a sh!t)

    PS ditto on your 1st para in 9:34am but keeping in the spirit of things just trim down my response and remove “not” at the end of the sentence ;)

    Personally I see pretty much everything as various shades of grey and glad to see we finally have a PM and govt that did “smell the coffee” and realise everyone else whose operating a “dark grey” agenda tries to fob it off as “near white” (eg EC’s scoreboard on infringements will clearly shows no one is “whiter than white” – especially not inside your precious EU!)

    I’m ssssooo used to you/other misunderstanding, misrepresenting and then projecting your own views as if you think they are mine – whatever. zzz ZZZ

  21. Statgeek

    The “These Islands” conference was an interesting exercise in exploring Unionist attitudes.

    Did you see the STV report on it (8 min 39 sec in)?

    I can understand the frustration in the Yes camp, but there does seem to be an acceptance among the Unionists that they can’t resist increased demand for indy in Scotland – hence the somewhat distorted poll that they commissioned from YG.

    It remains the case that a Brexit deal that further damages Scotland is likely to be the tipping point.

  22. @ PETER – “More Divergence/More Barriers.”

    DONE. Wow that was easy! Let’s hope we get to the binary choice asap.

  23. “Wow that was easy! Let’s hope we get to the binary choice asap.”

    It is, all we need now is for the UK Government to tell the UK public how much divergence we are going to have and how much it will cost, instead of the current Cake & Eat it nonsense of; “We want to Diverge where we like but have no Barriers” because we all know that’s not going to happen.

    Last time the EU set out it’s stall within a month of the Brexit vote and didn’t budge, this time it is the same.

    Same tactic as before; They say what they want and that we have to decide how to get there. Now we just need to decide.

    You can argue over whether you want Full alignment or WTO or something in between, but the decision is ours and the balls in our court.

    What we seem to still be inflicted with is the inability of a UK Government to accept or be honest about the reality while they try to appease to factions within the Leave coalition; the Free Market Globalists and The EU Single Market enthusiasts.


  24. @Trevs – I agree with @Peter Cairns!

    Really not sure what was the point was of your last ramble.

    Yes – everyone really has moved on from the idea that we could leave the EU and still have everything we wanted. This was all laid out and agreed in the WA and PD. Nothing has changed. This is all about setting out agendas for where the point of balance between access and conformity will be.

    As @peter says – it’s really very simply indeed, which is all that I’ve been saying for the last god knows how many posts.

  25. I’ll requote a simples saying I heard a while back that relates to the fundamental misunderstanding in Brussels and (some/most?) EU states and hence the likelihood that talks collapse.

    “Before Brexit the UK thought the EC-EU was fundamentally an Economic project where as it always was a Political project

    The EU are yet to understand that Brexit is fundamentally a Political project and that some issues are more important than the Economics”

    So for folks that still don’t realise then it’s not about the tiny economic value of fishing, the tiny economic net gain of high levels of immigration (ie it’s not about 0.1%s on a 15yr dodgy prediction model) – it’s about TAKING BACK CONTROL – and it always was (Vote.Leave 1a and 1b)

    Obviously we have plenty of sovereign state capabilities (HMG, HMT, BoE) to mitigate the economic risks and seize the economic opportunities so I’ll add a twist on McDonnell’s quote, restating it as:

    “The Cleaner the Brexit, the more radical we can, and will need to, be”

    Hence why, going into a likely and imminent breakdown of talks (possibly with a reset to something less ambitious) it was so important that Boris conducted a final cleanse of HMG ‘Softies’ and any residues of Remain (TBC on purge#4 and civil service side).

    If, more like WHEN, it gets a bit messy you don’t your own side showing the kind of disunity it did under Mayb0t (thanks go to her for showing how bad that approach works!)

  26. Ah ALEC, but TW has to make it sound complicated and clever, or it doesn’t convince believers that we’ve ‘got one over’ on the foreigners.

    PC thinking on, it can’t be me as the potential family buyers haven’t even been booking viewings. Maybe Danny is right,

  27. @SDA – indeed. I think it’s from the ‘impress by overwhelming confusion’ school of management.

  28. @ PETER (SNP) – I respect some folks like Lewis are talking sh!te (about the current NI-GB arrangements let alone the future) but most businesses will be listening to not him (and his guff only relates to NI anyway)


    Obviously a lot of businesses and lobby groups don’t like or want change and would prefer we have the closest possible future relationship so Team GB’s message will meet some resistance of course and I fully accept HMG, HMT (and maybe BoE) need to be more “radical” and hands-on.

    Even the Groan picked up Gove’s speech although obviously they add their own spin on it.

    Also see Boris and Frost’s most recent speeches, #10 press feed and try to “anticipate” the message Team GB will be sending out tomorrow (when we get the official trade mandate docs). Sure we’ll still “hope” to get a Canada style deal but my guess is we’ll make it very clear there will be no extension (and no use of GATT XXIV) and that if “Canada” (as we interpret it) is not possible then we should move to “Australia” (ie MRAs+TRQs)

    Fully agree that neither side should continue with a “cake and eat it approach” as neither side will capitulate on “cherry picking” – if that mind set continues on EC-EU side then we might not even agree on an “Australia” deal (but we need to make it crystal clear that Boris+Frost are not “bluffing”)

    PS and I accept Nicola can work the populist angle in Scotland. Seems weird SNP folks accept that Indy is about the democratic deficit and Westminster being a bully but seem to think Brexit is somehow about 0.1% on a 15yr dodgy GDP prediction?!? Not my polity tho..

  29. We are clearly in our own ivory tower here, talking about Brexit when very likely it will have to be set back a few months because international discussions will be delayed.

    Not only will the EU members have more on their plates than making arrangements for one member departing, but also the UK will struggle to reach new trade deals with key countries further afield.

    World leaders should be pushing for new at-home arrangements to deal with major problems. The UK organising the UN COP26 Climate-change Conference should announce that the Glasgow gathering in December is postponed. But that the important business will be attempted electronically.

  30. @TW
    I think your misunderstanding here is that the EU DON’T CARE that Brexit is a political project from a UK perspective, not an economic one – that is simply not their problem.

    They will do what they have done every time before and will do every time again, because they are a rules-based organisation managing 27 members’ views:
    – lay out options for the future relationship that are acceptable to the EU members
    – wait for the UK to make a choice
    – be willing to finesse language and structure – but NOT principles – to help the UK government achieve a deal it can sell internally.

    The EU simply doesn’t have any interest that its now Johnson and Frost negotiating not May and Robins, it doesn’t change the options or the process.
    Nor are they interested in helping Johnson sell a deal internally if it impacts any of their principles to do so.
    They are presumably pleased that Johnson has a majority so that he can deliver on whatever he commits to, but that’s about it.

    All this bluster comes back to your apparent belief that we can have whatever we want from this negotiation as long as we are tough enough – but that’s cobblers, and its been cobblers since June 2016 and the ‘easiest deal in history’ nonsense was first aired, as we have been telling you ever since….

  31. @BFR – “They are presumably pleased that Johnson has a majority so that he can deliver on whatever he commits to, but that’s about it.”

    Completely agree with your post.

    There was a sense among some pre Dec 12th that if we elected Johnson with a big majority, that would cause a shiver to go down the collective Brussels spine. That was, as you say, complete cobblers. Brussels insiders were hoping for a substantial Johnson majority so they could sit down with a government that could actually deliver a deal.

    I think again, we are stuck with this idea that everyone is waiting with baited breath to hear what the British government have to say. @Trevs is one of those continually misreading the balance of power here.

    We’ve just got to choose how much we damage our businesses in exchange for a political win for Johnson.

    Interesting to see that the IoD members have given a very clear opinion that they think the government is on the wrong track here, with a big majority calling for easier access at the expense of increased sovereignty.

    When the IoD report sharply rising confidence, Brexiters told us what a great bunch they are. Wonder whether they will give them quite so many plaudits today?

  32. Pre budget, there are a couple of interesting stories floating around.

    The new ‘Blue Collar’ group of Con backbenchers are pressing the chancellor not to reinstate the fuel duty escalator. This could raise a lot of cash, and with oil prices falling, it would be a sensible time to move on this, but politically it could be unpopular.

    A second report is that he is considering ending inheritance tax loopholes around agricultural land. Farmland is not subject to IHT, with certain conditions around period of ownership, and is in many ways another subsidy for farmers. The relief is used by the rich as a way to pass on wealth tax free.

    Scrapping this would be difficult for the genuine farm sector, but reform would be potentially possible without upsetting farmers too much.

    Along with the higher rate of pension tax relief, these are interesting areas of tax policy where this new government is somewhat hemmed in, and may find that every option to raise money affects one or other part of their electoral coalition.

  33. Alec

    My management philosophy has always been the exact opposite. Clarify, simplify, speed up.

    When I was managing the small business sector for NatWest Streamline Card Services I dramatically increased the scope of our telesales unit, to get merchants active faster, reduced what was sent to the sales force so they could cold call more and simplified pricing and referral processes so we lost less customers to our competition. I also conducted a first to last review of our processing of a new customer to show the minimum to maximum time that it took before a store could accept cards. I then started work on reducing each segment, the first time anyone had thought to do it.

    I am going to guess that you are at the opposite scale of young families that you think would buy your property.

    If that is the case it is often good to decluter your house and put some stuff in storage. try and make the property look like something you could rent.

    As I remember when I was in Congleton there are a number of new builds around that area so you selling your homely property that would most likely look good to my mum but look old fashioned to my children. You may have to do things like lighten and simplifying as an estate agent said to my mum

    it needs to look like a young family can step into it and live there without changing much. I remember one of my mums friend we spent £250 on painting and puting in different furniture and in one room we varnished the floorboards to make it look like a younger family lives there. The picture that got people to put it on the list was varnished floorboards room. I agree there is a limit but I would go look at other houses especially new builds and see how they are fashioned and try and replicate some of that

    The other thing that wins people is a functional garden so putting some effort in making your garden look special is another thing.

  35. PTRP
    I can’t pretend such thoughts haven’t crossed our minds, so given the vast skins of knowledge and experience on UKPR and knowing you don’t hold back in calling an LPF an MRA here’s SDA Towers

  36. For ‘skins’ read ‘skeins’. That’s the trouble with trying to appear erudite on a phone. Surprised it didn’t change that to araldite.

  37. @ BFR – Another misrepresentation and misunderstanding of my views by yourself but by less than some at least.

    So, anyway, I think we can all agree how the EC-EU will proceed (they are very predictable and obviously want the best political outcome for their side). You mention:

    “– wait for the UK to make a choice”

    Well it takes two to tango but “make a choice” is the current “dance” that is going on. We picked “Canada” off the menu but then either: a/ EC-EU moved the goalposts OR b/ we misinterpreted what “Canada” meant. Either way clearly Canada, like Norway is now “off the menu”

    Hopefully most of us can at least agree that UK and EC-EU have very different and, IMO, politically irreconcilable difference on some fundamentally political issues that will mean a “Canada” deal (the box Barnier ticked on his staircase) is not going to happen (at least not until we break talks, pause, recalibrate “ambition of outcome” and hopefully rebuild from MRAs up – pretty much how everyone does it anyway, eg CPTPP, USMCA, etc)

    So back to “choice” and who choses. I’ll go back to the most important part of Frost’s speech and quote exact wording (half-ish way down in link below)

    “If those doubts persist, we are ready to trade on Australia-style terms if we can’t agree a Canada type FTA”

    That was before EC released their detailed mandate but I hope we can also all agree that their mandate shows, as Frost would say “those doubts (from EC-EU) persist” (read the bit above in the link)

    So the next step in the “dance” does need to come from Boris+Frost via our full riposte tomorrow. We need to back up Frost’s speech via the ‘official mandate’ (ie show them Frost was not bluffing)

    Once it is clear that a Canada deal isn’t going to happen then, as Frost has already said and I’ll repeat in bold this time:

    “we are ready to trade on Australia-style terms if we can’t agree a Canada type FTA”

    Sadly we have to go through the “dance” as both sides have domestic audiences to keep sweet and know that rWorld is watching for who shows any signs of being weak (ie if either side is seen to capitulates on any fundamental political issues then rWorld will swoop in and demand the same capitulation/terms and neither UK or EC-EU will want to do that!)

    An “Australia deal” allows both sides to keep their red lines and hence declare (to their domestic audience) a “win”.

    To be clear, for EC-EU side then Barnier reports to the EU27.

    Quite how each of the EU27 then sell an ‘Australia’ deal to their respective voters is not Barnier’s problem and most certainly not Boris or Frost’s problem.

    Boris reports to and is held accountable to the GB electorate – not the French fisherman, the Irish farmers or the German car industry – that responsibility falls upon Macron, Leo and Merkel (each of whom will have a ‘People’s Vote’ fairly soon)

  38. I see the Trevs have again removed NI from the UK. Getting to be a habit.


    Having looked at the pictures the only suggestion is to remove one of the sofas out of the sitting room to make it look more roomy and again do something similar in room with the piano. The other thing to do is to talk to sales reps at the new builds and see if they are selling well. I will say this that when I had to move we went for a new build because of the fact that we got them to buy our property at a good price and we stayed until our new property was ready. In effect it saved us around nearly a year of renting and gave us peace of mind so check what sort of deals the new builds are doing since they make around 30-40% on list price so they can offer lots of things that you cannot they also get very aggressive end of year and end of half year
    What you really need is young professional couples with no kids considering the price of the property because single earners moving up would not be able to afford couples with young pre school kids would not be able to afford it normally. I all fairness the market for houses over 300K is actually quiet because those that would most likely to move do not have the level of assets. I feel that I will be in same situation when I decide to downsize since my property albeit a three story detached town house is s now in the stratospheric price range

    Oh and your garden is fantastic BTW

  40. @ ALEC – I’m not expecting you to reply on the NI thing but we can agree on the fuel duty. Here’s OBR piece from a while back (note the huge and growing gap in what we are raising versus what we could/should have been).

    Sadly, I’m not hopeful on that as I expect Boris wants to keep the Blue team United and hence I continue to expect the “weak link” in the triangle of choices (break manifesto spending promises, break other tax promises OR break[1] fiscal rules) will be the fiscal rules.

    [1] Pretty sure Rishi won’t call it “break” – he’s a pretty smart chap and gets the politics as well as the maths! Pretty sure OBR, IFS and pretty much everyone else will call it “break”.

    I’ll probably go with “tweak” or “bend”: BINGO numbers:
    – 90% being the new 60% on debt ceiling
    – “..over the cycle” on budget deficit
    – Brexit a great excuse for “one offs”
    – Infrastructure fund (but not PFI2)

    Reckon I’ll get 3 out of 4 on that!

  41. SFA,

    “Surprised it didn’t change that to araldite.”

    Then you’d really be stuck!


  42. @ OLDNAT – Bit pedantic but OK I’ll correct:

    “Boris reports to and is held accountable to the GB electorate”


    “Boris reports to UK Parliament and is held accountable by UK Parliament (CON only have seats in GB and they have a whopping majority in HoC so hence I trimmed to “GB”) and then in GE’24 Boris will be held accountable to the GB electorate (as they won’t win any in NI)”

    bit long winded but I do appreciate trimming posts does miss some of the important detail – tricky to get the balance right sometimes!

    If you want to add in CON leadership rules issue, Boris being hit by a bus or dying from COVID’19 and possibly Brenda as other “details” then be my guest – I don’t consider any of those significant risks but some folks might.

  43. PS and also some NI MPs don’t even show up – but then that’s not my polity is it.

  44. Re fuel duty, the rumour is not even an escalator, just an increase in line with inflation.

    For the last 10 years, fuel duty has been cut in real terms increasing the public subsidisation of motor vehicle use, this really needs to end.

    Longer term, fuel duty isn’t really a particularly ‘fair’ way to tax car use as it disproportionately hits rural use which has far fewer alternatives, needs to shift to a more dynamic road user charging accounting for area and present congestion, with fuel duty largely covering the CO2 cost.

  45. @ JAMESB – You’ve probably read the IFS studies but they back up your points:

    The 2012 one is similar. Sadly, I don’t think this is seen as politically urgent and Macron showed the political risk of a quick, old skool fix.

    Boris is a fan of the congestion charge and Carrie is on our side so maybe before GE’24 though?

    Best to realistically expect on 11Mar’20 is a “review” on approach and, as you say, an increase in line with inflation (possibly more than 1yrs worth of inflation but don’t get your hopes up)

  46. “Having looked at the pictures the only suggestion is to remove one of the sofas out of the sitting room to make it look more roomy and again do something similar in room with the piano.”


    You could put the spare furniture in a storage unit. (Don’t remove the piano though, maybe add a couple of synths…)

  47. PTRP

    Thanks for the tips. Unfortunately builders tend not to be interested in doing deals with anyone downsizing, not sure why not on such large margins, but it seems endemic in the industry. We did find one new build design we liked, but it was hemmed in on all sides and the roads will look like a car park come the evenings and weekends.

    It took me 8 years to come up with the design for the central sitting area in the garden, having redesigned most of the rest. I just couldn’t come up with a suitable shape and then it just flowed and the guys who built it were brilliant.

    Funnily enough a young couple looked round, with their 7 week old daughter, last weekend and immediately told the agent they want to buy it. They have to sell their place yet, but both are serving police officers, one being on a year’s maternity leave. We have another couple who’ve just put their enormous house on the market to buy ours and the agent has just phoned in a viewing for the weekend for a couple who are currently renting.

    Whether any of these turn into anything worthwhile we shall see.

  48. Better to do something controversial early in your term though? Same reason they’re trying to get brexit ‘done’ (where ‘done’ equals a state that will be sold as done to the public regardless of any ongoing negotiations etc)

    Part of the problem with freezing fuel duty year on year is it becomes increasingly hard to stop doing as it’s now seen as the norm and removing the freeze is now seen as a rise, even though in real terms it’s just status quo.

    Regarding congestion charges, in England at least, these are actually a local authority level power that was given to them, along with workplace parking levies, back in 2000 by labour.

    Mostly gone unused with the exception of a WPL in nottingham (that they’ve used to fund a fair bit of transport improvements from) and a very small congestion charge in durham. They’ve been getting a bit more attention though in the past few years with the combination of endlessly growing traffic and national cuts forcing hands.

  49. @trevs – ” ALEC – I’m not expecting you to reply on the NI thing…”

    That’s great, because I have no idea what the NI thing is.

1 41 42 43 44