Today there was a new London poll from Opinium and a new Scottish poll from Survation. However with only two days to go before Thursday’s elections I thought I would take a broader look at all the polling so far for this week’s contests.


Four companies have produced polls for the London election this year: ComRes, YouGov, Opinium and Survation – their latest figures are below (Opinium publish their first round data without removing don’t knows, so I’ve repercentaged it to make it comparable to other polling). Note that while Opinium described their poll as their final poll for the election, the polls from the other companies are not necessarily the final ones: I’m expecting to see some eve-of-election polls tomorrow.

First round . Second Round
Pollster Goldsmith Khan Pidgeon Whittle Berry Others Goldsmith Khan
Opinium (26th Apr-1st May) 35 48 4 5 5 3 43 57
Survation (21st-25th Apr) 34 49 3 5 3 6 40 60
YouGov (15th-19th Apr) 32 48 5 7 6 2 40 60
ComRes (30th Mar-3rd Apr) 37 44 7 5 4 3 45 55

The recent polls have Sadiq Khan convincingly ahead – the three most recent polls have him just short of winning on the first round, and on the second round he wins comfortably with a lead of 14 to 20 points. The ComRes poll is a little closer, but is a month old now and still had Khan winning by ten points on the second round. Note that only one poll, Opinium’s final call, has been conducted since Labour’s anti-Semitism row. Khan himself has thoroughly distanced himself from Ken Livingstone, but there is always a risk of guilt by association. Opinium’s poll doesn’t suggest it has damaged him (in fact it had Khan extending his lead) and Khan’s lead looks unsurmountable anyway, but we’ll see what the final polls tomorrow show.


A broader range of companies have produced polls in Scotland, with figures from six different companies so far. Once again, these are by no means the final polls from each company and I am expecting final eve-of-election polls from some companies tomorrow.

Constituency . Regional
Survation (1st-2nd May) 19 21 7 49 20 19 6 44 7
Panelbase (23rd-28th Apr) 17 23 6 49 19 22 4 44 6
Ipsos MORI (18th-25th Apr) 18 19 6 51 19 17 7 45 10
TNS (1st-24th Apr) 17 22 7 52 18 22 5 45 8
BMG (11th-15th Apr) 16 21 6 53 16 20 6 46 7
YouGov (7th-11th Apr) 19 21 6 50 18 19 5 45 8

The SNP’s victory in Scotland is a foregone conclusion (hell, if they don’t win this would be the king of all polling errors). The more interesting question is who will come in second place – Scottish Labour’s stock has fallen so low they risk dropping behind the Scottish Conservatives. All recent polls now have Labour ahead of the Tories on the constituency vote, but several have the Conservatives ahead on the regional vote (and given that Labour will struggle to win constituency seats, the regional tally will likely have a greater impact on how many MSPs each party gets). Also keep an eye on the gap between the SNP’s constituency vote and regional vote – in 2007 and 2011 they were within a percentage point or two of each other, but the polls are suggesting the SNP will do between five and seven points worse on the regional vote, largely to the benefit of the Scottish Greens. This seems feasible enough (the Scottish Parliament’s electoral system means that if the SNP clean up on constituency seats they will struggle to win many list seats) but it will be interesting to see to what extent it is reflected in the actual results.


There is comparatively little polling in Wales and the only regular and recent figures are the YouGov polls for ITV Wales and Cardiff University (ably reported on by Roger Scully at his Elections in Wales blog). The most recent figures there are CON 19%, LAB 33%, LDEM 8%, Plaid 21%, UKIP 15% for the constituency and CON 19%, LAB 29%, LDEM 8%, Plaid 22%, UKIP 15% in the regional vote. There will be a final YouGov Wales poll on ITV news tomorrow night.

Northern Ireland

Despite the name of this blog, it actually tends to be GB Polling Report most of the time – Northern Irish polls are even rarer than Welsh ones. We do have one though! Lucidtalk had a poll of Assembly voting intention figures in the Northern Irish edition of today’s Sun – topline figures are DUP 27%, SF 26%, UUP 16%, SDLP 12%, Alliance 8%, TUV 4%, GRN 3%.

Police and local elections

The other two elections on Thursday are local authority elections – mainly in those districts councils that elect by thirds, including metropolitan councils outside London (just over a third of the country will have local elections) – and Police and Crime Commissioner elections, which take place throughout England and Wales with the exceptions of London and Greater Manchester. Neither contest has any published polling.

132 Responses to “Polling on Thursday’s elections”

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  1. CMJ

    So, what you are saying is that in England, Labour did well in 2012 because they were popular : while in 2016, they will do less well because they aren’t popular.

    I suspect that is exactly what the commentariat will be saying on Friday. What else would be an accurate description – unless you are suggesting that there is a theoretical norm to which your 2 main parties “should” conform?

  2. @Oldnat

    It always looked a tough set elections for Labour in England to defend.

    In that context, standing still would be good.

    I do think that when Jeremy spoke about not losing seats, it was rather optimistic, leaving him open to criticism.

    Labour are where they are due to many factors, many of which are nothing to do with Jeremy Corbyn. I have no doubt that any Labour losses will be blamed entirely on JC, but I suspect this is to easy answer to really be the entire truth. If they do well, I don’t expect he will get any credit either from his critics either.

    Mind you, all parties spin results is ways that are nonsense, I have got used to it :-)

  3. CMJ

    “Mind you, all parties spin results is ways that are nonsense”

    How true – and, sadly, in the same predictable terms that their opponents used when results went the other way!

  4. Presumably “how many seats Labour should get” according to R&T is on the basis of the average opinion poll figures, if translated into real votes (their academic specialty).

    If Labour get how many they “should” that means the results tend to confirm the opinion poll results. That would be interesting in itself (the first big test of the pollsters since last year’s discomfort) but it would still leaves Labour open to “shouldn’t be trailing in the polls at this stage” style criticism.

    Of course, “at this stage” it’s all sound and fury anyway.

  5. I’ve had a scoot around for a summary of R & T’s past predictions vs actual results, but drawn a blank.

    I believe they take local by election results and compare to national polls based on certain readjustments based in the local election seats being fought.

    Here is a link to a report by Curtice and Fisher:

  6. Looking over the various elections tomorrow, there appears to be a knife-edged Mayoral Election in Bristol between the Independent incumbent and his Labour rival.

    Does anyone local have further details on this?

  7. An aspect of tomorrow’s English elections that I haven’t seen mentioned yet –

    I know nothing about the oversight powers of the Police Commissioners, but could the election of Tory/non-Tory ones affect the decisions – in those forces covering the 29 Tory constituencies where there is a question over candidate expense returns – as to whether the police apply for an extension of the period for investigation before 12 June?

    I suspect only Neil A has the answer!

  8. Fascinating to see the meltdown on TTIP on both sides of the Atlantic. Even before this weekend’s leaks, support for it was dropping like a stone across the EU, and the US’s twin deal for the Pacific is now so unpopular that Clinton is campaigning against it. Even the Telegraph writers are saying we should abandon these deals. Wow!

    This again seems to be an area where a fully functioning Labour opposition might have been able to distinguish itself, and ultimately carve out a substantial victory, if, as seems now likely, TTIP does not progress.

    The reasons why these deals are now so unpopular, increasingly now even at EU government level, is that they are unbelievably secret to MPs and the public, but not to corporations, that governments are being sidelined in the application of future policy, and that standards are being lowered, rather than raised. The reason for the secrecy is now obvious – the talks would have been abandoned years ago if the public knew what they were about.

    Labour, by subsuming itself into the fetid neoliberal morass, became part of the problem and has now missed the chance to take the lead on this, even as they elect a left wing leader. The stunning reversal in support for TTIP here and abroad is testament to just how poorly democracy is functioning, and how remote the power barons have become.

    It is why Trump is marching, and the EU is struggling, and unless governments start talking to their voters, a lot of decent things could get washed away in the rising tide.

  9. Alec

    “governments [have been] talking to their voters” for many years.

    Listening, however, is a skill that many have neglected.

  10. Funny, I was just reading about wot Alec’s on about….

    Scary stuff, and reminder as to why we have to keep a check on capital else it usurps government and not necessarily in a good way.

  11. TTIP and TPP may yet fall, although I remember that we were told that TPP would be abandoned because Japan would not sign up. Nevertheless, a few days later, without warning, the treaty was signed in Hawaii. So I’ll believe it when the various govts announce that TTIP is over.

    However, it has to be said that TISA is still being negotiated in secret, and not only covers the same countries as TTIP and TPP combined but also covers more or less the same stipulations, rules and legislation. There is an argument for saying that TTIP and TPP are the Trojan horses of TISA.

    Furthermore, CETA has already been signed and the ISDS contained in it, makes it possible for the US to sue EU countries through their Canadian subsidiaries. This also holds for the fast tracked super bilateral signed between the EU and Ukraine.

  12. @Neil A
    ‘If Labour get how many they “should” that means the results tend to confirm the opinion poll results. That would be interesting in itself (the first big test of the pollsters since last year’s discomfort) but it would still leaves Labour open to “shouldn’t be trailing in the polls at this stage” style criticism.’
    There is a lot of psephological ignorance spouted by both politicians and journalists on this – though some of the misleading comments are undoubtedly wilful. The problem particularly arises because these Local Govt seats were last fought in 2012 which was very much midterm in the last Parliament. 2016 is too early to be correctly labelled as ‘midterm’ and it is quite normal for re-elected Governments to fare reasonably at this stage. This will not be true of 2017.

  13. Feels like mid-term…

  14. @Syzygy

    Hard to get your head around, innit. “What did you do at work today daddy?”

    “I negotiated in secret to make it difficult for governments to protect us with food regulations!!”

    “You can get a job doing that?”


    “You get paid… To make things worse?”

    “Well its a lot easier than trying to improve things. People who aren’t good at improving things, have to earn money somehow”.

    “But what about our food?”

    “Don’t worry I already thought of that. We’ve got an allotment”

    “You are clever Daddy!!”

    “Yes but remember don’t tell anyone, it’s a secret….”

  15. Article here on how much parents are forking out to help offspring with property…

    “Most high street banks were forced to shrink their balance sheets drastically in the wake of the great financial crash of 2008-09. But one went in the other direction. It was, of course, the Bank of Mum and Dad (BOMAD).

    While commercial banks pulled in their horns and reduced the availability of mortgages to first-time-buyers, parents who could afford it stepped up their provision of financial assistance for their children in order to help their relatives clamber on to the bottom rung of the housing ladder.

    And BOMAD is still expanding. House prices continue to rise, easily outstripping average wage growth, meaning it remains very hard for many young people to buy. According to estimates in a new report commissioned by the insurer Legal & General BOMAD will provide £5bn of financing this year for house purchases. And that will underpin no less than 300,000 residential housing transactions ? a quarter of the expected total.”

  16. There are obvious issues concerned with entrenching inequality this way, but part of the reason this happens is that, in contrast to what Colin suggested to me the other day, residential housing has its tax advantages…

    “Residential housing is enormously tax privileged. A lot of anger is vented against the supposed advantages of Buy-to-Let landlords in the property market. Yet the biggest beneficiaries of government tax breaks are ordinary homeowners. VAT is not charged on the sale of new homes; nor is capital gains tax levied on someone’s main residence. These tax breaks are part of the reason the returns one can receive from residential property exceed just about any other form of saving. It’s no real surprise that so many people plough money into their houses – pushing up prices. A new paper by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research suggests this long-standing tendency is doing economic damage by diverting household savings away from more productive commercial uses.”

  17. @ Carfew

    ‘Hard to get your head around, innit.’

    Very much so.. but then so is a lot of neoliberal philosophy as described by Phillip Mirowski. Eg Nature is unknowable by puny human scientists. Only the market, in its capacity as an information gathering sort of super-computer can hope to determine the best way forward to deal with the future and problems such as climate
    change. Hence, ignore the climate scientists.

    TTIP/TPP/CETA/TISA and all the rest of the bilaterals (which have been kept so secret that none of us know about them until after they’ve been signed and sealed) are aimed at preventing govts from interfering in the actions of the market. Ironic that such a plethora of legislation is needed to keep the corporate-financial nexus ‘free’.

  18. Some of you may not find this relevant on a UK polling discussion website, but in Canada a heated debate is erupting over climate change and need for government action.

    Fort McMurray is in the heart of the Canadian tar sands, and has been watching a forest fire inch closer to the community. Yesterday, high winds pushed the fire across the Athabasca River into the heart of the community, nearly cutting the only road south to Edmonton.

    80,000 residents were ordered to leave the community and so far 1,600 structures have burnt to the ground. Hugely problematic is the fact that the fire is now burning underground in the northern muskeg, and could take months even years to burn itself out.

  19. Even before Corbyn was elected, there was discussion on here about how badly would Labour have to perform in the polls or in these elections before it could be concluded that the Corbyn strategy of trying to engage directly with the electorate wasn’t viable. To pick from a couple of my comments at the time:

    There are at least three problems here. The first is that any such strategy is a long term one involving trying to get the public to see topics in a certain way. So some time may be needed. The second is that we have no idea what the effects of the volley of toy-throwing that would follow a Corbyn victory would be. Certainly if the Establishment Toddlers try to scream the place down if they don’t get their own way, VI may well be affected in the short term. That can hardly be blamed on Corbyn and we all know that giving in to toddlers is never wise in the long run.

    The third problem is that the 2016 elections are a rum bunch anyway. The Scottish and Welsh ones will be (rightly) dominated by their own national issues. In any case I think we can all agree that Scottish Labour’s wounds are all self-inflicted – though they had enough over to give some to their southern colleagues as well. The Mayoral and PCC elections are dominated by personality issues – and again were designed to be.

    Only the English local elections will give any idea of the impact of a new Labour leader and this lot are the least extensive of the cycle with mostly the usual elections by thirds in the places that have them. Given that they will only be eight months after the leadership election they won’t be that informative of long term prospects.

    […]I would however expect Labour losses because 2012 was the best local government percentage for them in recent years at 38%:,_2012

    and May 2012 was also the highest they got in the polls in the last parliament after the omnishambles budget,but before the rise of UKIP. Labour averaged 44% in YouGov that month, so for them to do anywhere like as well in May as they did in 2012 will be a triumph.

    They will still be interesting elections to follow of course, in particular to see how the Lib Dems post-Clegg, UKIP pre-referendum and Greens post-Labour election all do. Not just in terms of votes, but what candidates and organisation they show as well. It will also be instructive to see the effect of the influx of new members to Labour’s ranks and and pre-referendum tensions in the Conservatives. But the actual results will be less predictive than some will no doubt claim.

    It’s depressing that so little has changed and Toddler Tendency and their chums in the media are going through exactly the same predictable routines.

  20. @Syzygy

    “Very much so.. but then so is a lot of neoliberal philosophy as described by Phillip Mirowski. Eg Nature is unknowable by puny human scientists. Only the market, in its capacity as an information gathering sort of super-computer can hope to determine the best way forward to deal with the future and problems such as climate change. Hence, ignore the climate scientists.”


    Indeed. The Neoliberal thing stems in considerable part from the Austrian school of economics, who themselves rather rejected the scientific method, favouring the Praxeology thing instead. A lot of peeps don’t realise that their slavish addiction to the market stems from drinking the kool aid of an approach that rejects empirical data.

    Main reason for the rejection of climate science is that if climate change is true, it’ll prolly require concerted intergovernmental action to address. As climate change becomes harder to reject, they then therefore claim that the market is instead a better approach to fixing it.

    Except it isn’t necessarily the case. Wasn’t the case for smallpox either, which required International co-operation. Markets can actually inhibit good stuff happening, say when a company buys out a rival with a superior tech, and then sits on it because less profitable.

  21. “Hugely problematic is the fact that the fire is now burning underground in the northern muskeg, and could take months even years to burn itself out.”


    Ah, well, according to assorted neolibs, the market will fix it. (Amazing the market let it happen in the first place really…)

  22. It’s prediction time, mainly done from polls, rather than feelings –

    My feelings tell me that the Lib Dems might lose Orkney, while seat calcs are saying no Lib Dem seats in Fife, which I find hard to believe.

    I’m erring on the side of 72-75 SNP personally, but the data says 70.

    1 UKIP seat in the Highland region? Mebbes aye, and mebbes naw.

  23. @ StatGeek

    Looking over the last You Gov/Times Scottish poll, fieldwork May 2-4, regional voting including “don’t knows” page 2, it states of the Lib Dems who voted that way at the GE in 2015, 21% are still undecided how they will vote, as compared to 11% of SNP, 10% of Labour and 6% of Conservatives.

    The Lib Dems before will not vote and don’t knows are eliminated are running at a bare bones 5% in the regional list. This could be a real rough day for the Lib Dems, if one in five of their support votes but skips out on E-Day for some other party.

  24. Scottish Regional List:

    SNP 32 (41)
    Conservative 15 (20)
    Labour 15 (19)
    Green 7 (9)
    Lib Dem 5 (6)
    UKIP 3 (4)
    Other 2 (2)
    Will not vote 5 (-)
    Don’t know 9 (-)

    Scottish Constituency vote:

    SNP 48
    Labour 22
    Con 19
    Lib Dem 7
    Green 2
    UKIP 2

  25. Just been and voted (first one in the polling station as per). Good luck to everyone standing or campaigning today, from whatever party.

  26. “Good luck to everyone standing or campaigning today…”


    Good luck to any of you who are doing the voting thing too!!

    I’ll be standing… at a bar somewhere probably…

  27. Good morning all from a extremely sunny Winchester station.

    “I love the smell of an election in the morning, bring it on”…..who said that?

    Few results I will be looking out for later into the wee hours..

    Will the SNP have another majority?

    Will my ol seat of Eastwood fall to the Tories or SNP?

    Will Itchen Valley remain a Lib/Dem free zone?

    Will Labour lose more than 200 seats across England?

    Will UKIP win more than 5 seats in the Welsh assembly?

    As for the police commissioner elections…boring boring boring and just a complete waste of public money on non essential bureaucracy.

    London Mayor elections….I wouldn’t vote for any of the candidates… all are completely vile especially the ex cat man yin…yuck!!


    I’m using my smart phone so it’s quite difficult to see the time on your post but im guessing 7.15? and you have already voted? lol you’re keen!!

  29. Some anecdotal polling evidence on my way to work from a constituency in which Zac has to win by a huge margin to take the Mayoral crown.

    Outside Bromley South station (main Bromley commuter station into London) there were a few people with a big blue Zac Goldsmith stand. A few metres away there was a person handing out Zac flyers. I observed the scene for about 5 minutes before entering the station. No flyers were collected, and no-one took any notice of the stand.

    Of course, like me, the commuters they were seeking to entice might have already voted. If not, this does not look good for the blue team.

    Further evidence of potentially bad news for Zac came from the non-existent deserted “queue’ at the polling station. In addition, when I got inside very few names had been crossed off the register. I could only see one other name struck through on my page.

    Whether this actually means anything at all I don’t know. All I can say is my experience from previous Mayoral elections here is that this was the smallest queue/emptiest polling station I can ever remember.

  30. “Just been and voted (first one in the polling station as per)”

    I thought I would be first, as per, but after waiting 10 minutes outside and being let in at 7am on the dot, I found a man (in a kilt by the way) waiting outside the polling room. How and when he got there I don’t know, but he was first, and I was second.

    I don’t know whether I can infer the way he voted from his wearing a kilt. I had an opportunity to take a sneak peek (at his vote… nothing else!) when he put one of his ballots in the box. He missed, and the paper ruckled open. I had a split second to decide whether to look or not. I decided not to look. What a gentleman I am.
    7:03am, I was out the door. I love voting early. When I go past later and see the queues, I’ll feel smug. In fact… I already do a little.

    Happy voting, people.

  31. @ Carfew

    ‘Markets can actually inhibit good stuff happening, say when a company buys out a rival with a superior tech, and then sits on it because less profitable.’

    You don’t say :)

  32. Is it just me, or has the BBC’s post-election internet coverage been truly appalling. Next to no actual information: seats won, where, swings, local significance or local factors are not mentioned. Just a constant repetition that it has been a bad night for Labour. As confirmed by many Blairite MPs and re-inforced by their own political correspondents. Pienaar and Watt both helpfully confirmed there was no chance of a Labour GE victory in 2020 (a view they might want to revisit if Osborne succeeds Cameron).

    Now we are getting lots of “humiliating night for Labour in Scotland”; and Tory ministers saying what a great night for them it has been, and that it has been a nightmare for Labour. I do not even know the benchmark for a good Conservative performance, and only John Curtice has genuinely explained how to measure whether it has been a good night for Labour. But after that the information is not provided to let us work it out for ourselves.

    It has felt like a night-long lecture telling us how we should vote, what issues are important to us, and why we should not vote Labour ever, ever again.

    I also suspect UKIP voters could voice similar criticisms, save not having the gloating from the Tories. I am genuinely none the wiser whether it has gone well for UKIP or not. Or the Lib Dems for that matter.

    Don’t know if TV and radio have had the same approach, but haven’t got good access to them at the moment.

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