Ten days to go to the election and we’ve had interesting day of polls – four new GB polls, some new constituency polling and a new Scottish poll. The four GB polls today are the weekly Ashcroft and ICM telephone polls, the twice weekly Populus poll and, to come later on tonight, the daily YouGov poll for the Sun:

  • Populus had figures of CON 33%, LAB 36%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 14%, GRN 5% (tabs). They continue to produce figures that are more favourable to Labour than many of the other pollsters – you have to go all the way back to August to find a Populus poll with a Conservative lead.
  • In contrast ICM have tended to produce some of the better polls for the Conservatives – their last four polls showed Conservative leads and today’s has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 32%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 13%, GRN 5% (tabs)
  • Lord Ashcroft’s weekly poll had topline figures of CON 36%, LAB 30%, LDEM 9%, KIP 11%, GRN 7% (tabs) – this is obviously a particularly good poll for the Conservative party, but all the usual caveats apply. No other poll is showing such positive figures for them.

Lord Ashcroft also released four new constituency polls, this time covering four UKIP target seats (or at least, four where he had previously found them doing well, I’m not sure whether Cannock Chase was ever a seat they were targetting – certainly Ashcroft’s poll found respondents reporting a lower level of UKIP activity there). When Ashcroft previously polled these seats he found UKIP in an extremely close second place, this time he found them falling back and seemingly out of serious contention in three of them:

  • Cannock Chase is a seat the Conservatives won on a vast swing last time, but where the new MP has stood down after various gaffes. In October 2014 Ashcroft found UKIP two points behind Labour, 30% to Labour’s 32%. The latest poll still shows Labour ahead, but UKIP now trail in third place on 21%.
  • Great Grimsby is widely regarded as the best opportunity for a UKIP gain from Labour at this election – a Lincolnshire fishing port where the veteran MP Austin Mitchell is standing down. In December Ashcroft found UKIP just a point behind Labour, but they’ve fallen back considerably since then and today’s poll has them 17 points behind Labour
  • Great Yarmouth fits the pattern for a typical UKIP target seat, a seaside town and marginal seat out on England’s east coast. Last July Ashcroft found a tight three way fight – Con 33%, UKIP 31%, Lab 28%. Today’s poll has UKIP falling back to 24%, but Conservative and Labour still in a close battle – Con 36%, Lab 34%
  • Castle Point is the only one of the three where UKIP still seems to be in the race. It’s an unusual seat – the former Conservative MP Bob Spink sort of defected to UKIP in 2008 and contested the seat as an Independent in 2010, coming second with 27%. In February Ashcroft found UKIP just one point behind the Tories, in today’s poll the Conservatives have widened their lead to 5 points.

Finally a new TNS poll of Scotland shows the SNP moving into an even stronger lead. Their topline figures with changes from their last Scottish poll are CON 13%(nc), LAB 22%(-2), LDEM 6%(nc), SNP 54%(+2), UKIP 2%(+1), GRN 2%(-1). Tabs are here.

808 Responses to “A round up of Monday’s polling”

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  1. Gary O

    Or Farron might have like minded LibDems still in place as the right wing takes a hit with Clegg,Alexander and Laws losing their seats.

  2. “I also think that the same SNP issue will sink the Libdems across the southwest by lessening support for the Libdems among tory minded voters who won’t want things like Trident abolished”

    However, Lib Dem policy doesn’t seem to involve abolishing Trident, only reducing the number of missiles.

    Dunham111 said: ” IMO, it’s nonsense to consider any sort of post-GE scenario where any unionist party (i.e. Con/Lab/LD/UKIP/DUP) co-operates with the SNP – like SF, they are beyond the pale from a UK perspective.”

    I don’t think this equation holds at all. There must be many voters out there who don’t really buy the anti-SNP stuff but who would be much more disturbed by a role for SF because of the legacy that party carries (not withstanding its role in the NI coalition, which is due to the special circumstances of NI).

  3. @ RFTN

    The Nate Silver predictions are as posted by “deepthroat” at 8 pm today on the “Labour Target seats” thread on this website, quoting Nate Silver from his Panorama appearance, and were as follows:

    Nate Silver: BBC Panorama

    @ LRR

    IMO, Lab would not ally with the Celtic nationalists to defeat a Con Queen’s Speech if they had “lost” the Lab-Con contest by at least 10 seats, because it would be foolish for them to do so. EM has now made his position clear.

    Lab’s position in any subsequent election in England would be imperilled by having co-operated with perceived “enemies of the UK”. BTW, I am not personally hostile to the aspirations of PC/SNP/SF.

  4. Les Cunningham

    I can see a PV with a signature/DOB problem being rejected, but with some of the problems Paul postulated above (eg using the wrong envelopes or other such admin type errors) I would hope the Returning Officers/scrutineers would apply some common sense (and count the votes if intent is clear).
    Of course the sheer number of PVs could slow the counts considerably.

  5. @dunham111

    I don’t think your equating 2015 SNP with 1918 Sinn Fein is valid. SF had led a real, ie violent revolution just 2 years previously, slap bang in the middle of what was perceived at the time as a patriotic war against Germany. On the British side, soldiers (and police and politicians etc) were killed, and on the Irish side, leaders of the Rising were executed.

    People may not like SNP, but I don’t think anyone accuses them of murder or violent overthrow of the State. I doubt anyone, other than Teresa May, actually sees them as worse than modern-day (pre-GFA) SF/IRA.

  6. @Gary O

    I think it’s more than likely that Andrew George (if he survives in St Ives) would quit if another Lib-Con coalition was formed.

    Maybe heading back to the old days of National Liberals (Tories in all but name) and Liberals?

    Sounds rather like preparing a set of demands, so specific as to allow him to say that, sadly, he can’t support any other party on anything.

    I have been wondering if that’s what he’s doing…. given there are so many caveats recently.

  8. We got our first (and probably only) UKIP leaflet by post today.

    The candidate spelt her own name wrong.

  9. @Les Cunningham,
    The postal vote slip contains a stern warning about entering DOB rather than that day’s date, so I suspect there have been a few spoiled ballot papers on that score in the past.

    To be honest, I doubt it’s much of an issue – voters to the devolved parliaments/assemblies seemed to have managed quite complex ballot papers….

    By the way, I vote by post as I’m often away for work – I sent mine off this morning, in Colchester.

  10. Oh, I meant to say this days ago. Apparently, the People’s History Museum in Manchester are collecting election materiel, and I think are interesting in all the constituency stuff people are getting.

    I’m saving mine up here in Colchester, including the most extraordinary one from the LibDems asking me to switch from Labour….

  11. Dunham111

    Lost by a whole 10 seats out of 650, serious stuff. I do not concur with your analysis.

  12. Purely as an aside, the last thread has had over 1000 entries so far. Is this a record?

    I also think that the same SNP issue will sink the Libdems across the southwest by lessening support for the Libdems among tory minded voters who won’t want things like Trident abolished.

    It will certainly have resonance in Somerset because of the above average number of military families.

    They will lose seats here. However I think David LAws will keep Taunton.

  14. @Matthew G

    If you are 10 days old on the day of the election you can’t vote.

    It’s the law.

  15. Once again: the idea that a nationalist party should be discounted from the process of government-formation seems like a bit of constitutionalism made up on the spot during the campaign, and while it clearly has some backing in E&W polling, I’m not comfortable with it at all.

    Comparisons to Ireland in 1918 seem completely bizarre, given that they took place in the aftermath of an actual armed rebellion (from the contemporary Unionist perspective); 1892, perhaps, where the Conservatives won the most seats, but the IPP supported Gladstone’s minority Liberal ministry for three years?

    (I’m not going to comment on the football results, as I might give away a penalty and earn a red card.)

  16. @Les Cunningham

    Guidance for rejecting signatures on Postal votes is here


  17. @Pete B

    I don’t think so but it keeps @Alec in a job for the next 5 years.

  18. @Les

    You can find the answer to your question on postal ballots here (from the 2010 elections)


    “5.21 Across the UK approximately 5.5 million valid postal votes were received,representing just over 18% of all votes cast at the UK general election. More than 220,000 returned postal votes (representing approximately 3.8% of those returned) were not included in the count because the details provided on the postal voting statement (which voters are required to complete and return with
    their postal vote) could not be successfully checked against the details provided on their original postal vote application. This checking process is required to be
    carried out on a minimum of 20% of returned postal votes, and is intended to ensure that no fraudulently completed postal votes are included in the count”

    You are supposed to get a letter if your vote was rejected so you can understand why for next time.

  19. James

    A split in the Liberals wouldn’t surprise me


    You might be right. I’m still amazed the Lib Dems didn’t ditch Clegg 2 years ago. At least if he’d quit or been booted out another leader might have been able to try and draw a line under tuition fees and rebuild some semblance of a reputation. Mind you I wondered the same about Brown before the 2010 election.

    I’m saving mine up here in Colchester, including the most extraordinary one from the LibDems asking me to switch from Labour….

    So funny. I notice the Lib Dem candidate here, who last election asked Labour voters to switch, has in this morning’s leaflet changed to asking for the Greens to do so. No mention of Labour this time. I think she feels she just daren’t go there again in the circumstances.

  21. Pete B

    If AW went through and moderated all the partisan ones then it’d be half the size.

  22. “Nate Silver’s predictions are very similar to my own, which are Con 285, Lab 273, LD 22, SNP 46, UKIP 2, PC 3, Grn 1 and NI parties 18, with DC remaining as PM, and final GB vote shares of Con 34%, Lab 32%. I think that there is too much over-reliance on the Labour-leaning YouGov polls (possibly because they are daily) on this site.”

    Cameron would last about two months on these figures…the tories and lib dems would have 307 seats, the same as the tories alone did at the beginning of the 2010-15 parliament.

  23. @RAF

    Not in Tower Hamlets….

  24. @James Peel

    I agree. If I were a Labour supporter, I would take that result right now!

  25. @ Jaypee

    My comparison between SF in 1918 and SNP (potentially) in 2015 was just in terms of GE results in their respective countries. The SNP campaign, like that of many (but not all) Irish nationalists pre-1914 (after the failed United Irish rebellion in 1798), is currently peaceful. However, it is hard to believe that an electoral landslide where SNP win >50% of the vote and virtually all the Scottish seats will not lead to independence by 2020, and if this is resisted, there is the potential for violence.

    However, IMO, the SNP will slightly underperform compared to current polls and win only 45% of the Scottish vote and approximately 46 seats, enabling the Union to last a little while longer.

  26. @Matthew G


  27. Another Scottish poll is being reported by the Daily Record with SNP on 51%.

  28. Allan Christie and OLDNAT

    So how about this for a Trident scenario:-

    Move it from Scotland to Milford Haven in case of Scottish independence, then moved to Falmouth because of Welsh independence, then to Gibraltar which is returned to Spain!

    Where next? Chatham, Portsmouth…?

  29. Raf and Gary O


    Rather dismaying that only 20% of postal votes have to be checked properly, or have I misunderstood?

  30. So Nate thinks Lab will take about 50 seats off the Tories. Interesting.

  31. Being a traditionalist, I don’t much like the idea of teams such as Watford, Bournemouth, Hull, Swansea and, God forbid, Brentford being in the First division.

    I have nothing against such teams. But the likes of Sheffield, Blackburn, Wolves and the like ought to be there instead.

    It’ll be nothing but a Souther League the way it is going….


  32. James

    There might even be a split in the Tories – might be a body of opinion in the party that’s fed up of deals with the Lib Dems and decide it’s better to be in opposition and try and win a majority next time.


    The latest ITN poll suggested the Lib/Dems face a total wipe out across the South West. All 14 seat going to the Tories. Maybe if the Lib/Dems want to change their fortunes around in the SW then they could lobby for Trident to be based at Falmouth. ;-)

    We could put it next to the nucleur power station at Hinkley. :)

    Anyway that poll by ITN was much discussed. It didn’t tell us much about individual seats so far as I remember. The Lib Dems are going to be wiped but I’d be surprised if they lost Taunton for instance…. we’ll see.

  34. David Clegg (Record political writer)

    New Survation poll for Daily Record

    SNP 51% (+4);
    LAB 26% (NC);
    CON 14% (-2);
    LD 5% (+1);
    OTHER 4%

    Seats: SNP 55; LAB 3; LD 1; Tories 0 (presumably this is by applying UNS)

    Last Survation was in mid-March, so confirms pattern that SNP went up by a bit in late March / early April (first GB debate and that French embassy nonsense).


    Thanks Matthew.

  36. @Les, for the 2014 elections it was also 4% of postal ballots rejected, and they outline the reasons as


    Page 17

    (first % is EU election rejections, second is local election rejections)

    Signature missing 8.6 6.0
    Date of birth missing 4.7 4.8
    Both signature and date of birth missing 9.5 10.1
    Signature did not match ERO’s record 19.7 21.5
    Date of birth did not match ERO’s record 17.6 17.1
    Neither the signature nor the date of birth matched the ERO’s record 7.5 7.8
    Missing postal voting statement 16.7 14.4
    Missing ballot paper 15.7 18.2

    So it does look like they are quite strict, with plenty of things to go wrong.

  37. Micromark

    There’s a history of storing explosives in the cellars of the House of Commons ………..

  38. Survation Scottish Poll

    SNP 51%(+4)
    Labour 26%(=)
    Cons 14%(-2)
    Lib Dems 5%(+1)

  39. New Survation poll for the Record puts SNP at 51% (up 4) and Labour at 26% ( no change).

  40. @Richard

    Interesting – how many are actually checked? It suggests that up to 19% of postal votes are returned incorrectly completed…

  41. Comment on Survation Full Scottish:

    Historic times as a majorty of Scots set to vote SNP and SNP will take all the Scottish seats.

  42. @David in France,
    Well at my age (35), I’d prefer to see Sheffield W, Nottingham Forest, Leeds, and Wimbledon back in the top flight.

    And this is from a West Ham supporter. Er, no, I mean Aston Villa, er, er…. what’s the one with the Alan Sugar’s sidekcik….

  43. Nate Silver’s numbers

    As Lab+SNP would be shy of a majority, would the “crisis” gang be more or less happy with that ie they would still need support from another party

  44. @ David in France

    ‘God forbid, Brentford”!!!!!!!!!! You have been in France too long my friend. The mighty Bees have played some of the best football in the Championship this year, and all for the price of a curry!! Be ashamed, very ashamed!!!

  45. The suspense is killing.One has to feel sorry for Natalie Bennett who has lost
    her voice just when she needs it.Mind you Cameron might have the same
    problem if he keeps up all that shouting.

  46. YouGov/Sun:

    CON 35 (+2)
    LAB 34 (=)
    LIB 9 (+1)
    UKIP 12 (-2)
    GRN 5 (=)

  47. YouGov has Tories ahead by 35-34.

  48. ProfHoward

    I’m beginning to think that’s likely now. SNP have a wave of enthusiasm going for them that looks unstoppable.

  49. Now then – that is interesting. All MoE, but has the Scottish drama finally reaped rewards for the Cons? I think it has.

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