Recent voting intention figures continue to show a moderate Conservative lead of between 6 and 9 points. Voting intention polls published so far this month are:

YouGov/Times (5th Aug) – CON 42, LAB 36, LD 8
Redfield & Wilton (12th Aug) – CON 43, LAB 36, LD 9
Ipsos MORI/Standard (4th Aug) – CON 45, LAB 37, LD 6
Survation (3rd Aug) – CON 44, LAB 35, LD 8

While the media narrative around the government’s handling of the Corona outbreak has turned far more negative, the polling suggests the public are still quite evenly split. So in the latest Ipsos MORI monitor 42% think the government have handled the outbreak well, 40% badly.

Keir Starmer continues to poll positively. His satisfaction rating from MORI is plus 22, by 38% to 24% people think he has what it takes to be a good PM. In YouGov’s regular “best PM” question Starmer led Johnson by 34 to 32% last week – the first time the Labour leader has been in the lead since a single poll straight after the 2017 election. Starmer apparently polling more positively than Labour is an interesting dynamic. MORI have (or used to have) a nice tracker question asking if people like the leader, like the party, both or neither. Over the last couple of decades people have consistently liked the Labour party more than they’ve liked its leaders. I don’t think they’ve asked it yet of Starmer, but all other other polling suggests we may find ourselves in the unusual position of having a Labour leader who is more popular than their party. A different question is to what extent this is because Starmer appeals to the public more than his predecessors, and to what extent it’s a sign that the Labour party’s own brand has been tarnished.

Immigration has started to sneak up the political agenda again, presumably on the back of coverage of migrant boats in the English Channel. YouGov’s weekly tracker on the most important issue facing the country has immigration spiking up 9 points to 29%, though health, the economy and Brexit remain the dominant issues. The Ipsos MORI issues index shows it significantly lower – up 3 points to only 9% – but the fieldwork for that is a little older (conducted 31st Jul-5th Aug), so may have concluded before the story really hit headlines.

The week there was also a new YouGov poll of Scotland. Voting intentions for the Scottish Parliament election next year were SNP 57%, CON 20%, LAB 14%, LDEM 8% for the constituency vote, SNP 47%, CON 21%, LAB 14%, LD 7%, GRN 6%. Translated into seats this would likely give the SNP a solid overall majority despite the Scottish Parliament’s electoral system.

That would increase the chances of another independence referendum in the near future. The same poll found that by 44% to 41% people thought there should be a referendum in the event the SNP win a majority, and that as things stand people would vote yes. 45% of people they would vote yes, 40% no. Removing won’t votes and don’t knows, that translates to Yes 53%, No 47%. Tabs for the Scottish polling are here.


4,856 Responses to “Polling round up – August 2020”

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  1. “Of course I have discussed polling. There’s one I meant to mention about Scots attitudes to Immigration actually.”

    But didn’t. That will be a no then.

  2. @Hireton

    “But didn’t. That will be a no then.”

    ———-

    Yes well, I felt the board could do without another blast of Indy straw men. Like you did to PTRP recently.

    You will note that when it comes to polling, people increasingly prefer to discuss things like the American elections. Politics discussion has been mostly destroyed on this board.

    (For my part, I avoid more of the political stuff now because some will only choose to engage with me in a negative way, and I don’t want others dragged into that).

  3. Figures for Belgium today: 2028 cases. Which scaled up to equivalence with UK would be about 12,000.

    Maybe Matt Hancock spoke too soon in following the lead of Belgium….

    (I note though that only one death; the disconnect between cases and deaths seems to continue)

  4. @ JJ – “Our lot incompetent is better that the other lot competent because of the philosophical stance”

    That will apply to the dyed in the wool types for sure but should be making inroads into the marginal voter and as yet not a lot of CON-LAB movement (although Opinium do show that VI in CON’19 seat gains have moved to plurality for LAB)

    i would offer some other possibilities, non-exhaustive, bit of a ramble brain dump:

    – Most folks (and I’d include myself) generally assume a low bar of “competency” for govt, especially on something “novel”. Unclear if that is something that develops with age or RoC view? I did also post the YG finding that most folks hold the public, not govt, responsible for “second wave” – so perhaps folks view HMG as doing the best anyone could expect and Sir Keir + team have no track record of “competency” to compare to.

    – Cognitive dissonance might be building within CON VI. A final straw might break the camel’s back?

    – Team performance. We see in polling that Rishi scores very high (although he’s off his peak). He’s probably propping CON VI up. Like others (incl Sir Keir getting in a bit of “foresight” backing the odds on favourite two lengths ahead in the final furlong) I expect Rishi will have to chuck more money at C19 (eg extending sector specific furlough and help for businesses).

    – Not kicking someone when they are down? Perhaps I shouldn’t read Groan bolitics Live but I do get a bit Gammon about Sturgeon and her Welsh copycat continually blaming UK HMG for everything bad and claiming any+all credit for anything good. Healthcare is devolved.
    (Welsh, see earlier, and Scottish polling does however suggest that voters in the devolved nations see their leaders/govt as vastly better than Boris/HMG and I’ve commented on the risks for WLAB of Drakeford copying Sturgeon)

  5. Straw that broke the camel’s back for May was not leaving end of Mar’19. Up until then she seemed to survive on what seemed liked some of “sympathy” VI?!?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion_polling_for_the_2019_United_Kingdom_general_election#Graphical_summaries

    CON VI then recovered once she was gone although in the “inbetween period” then CON+BXP stayed near 40% anyway – hence an “intra” move not “inter” RoC-LoC

    TBC if C19 or possibly even a capitulation to EC-EU terms becomes Boris’s Waterloo.

    For now though CON VI do still give Boris at least the benefit of the doubt so the Grey Suits’ knives stay in their sheaths.

    Even if/when the time comes then there are only so many times you can keep replacing the numpty in charge before folks get fed up with the whole team and before the “conspiracy theory” types get too excited then Gove and Dom have much worse polling than Boris – if Boris goes, the “trio” all go (IMO of course)

  6. I haven’t seen a definitive study of this, but the picture I pull together from recent polls is that Tory VI is holding up in the heartlands and tumbling in the marginals.

    If that is the true situation, then the comfort that RoC posters are taking in overall VI remaining above 40% may be misplaced.

    Not that what the public thinks counts for anything much in this elective dictatorship of ours. But government performance will be even harder to gloss over in a hostile, tory-sceptic environment, with the usual prop of a supportive press increasingly wobbly.

    I sense a growing mood of public disenchantment, not yet fully reflected in the polls. One straw in the wind to back that up is that our usual government apologists here have gone rather quiet of late.

  7. The £200m contract awarded to Fujitsu to develop the NI goods tracker system isn’t a huge sum in these free-spending times (if it works), but it’s another drop in the ocean of brexit costs.

    And someone earlier today referenced Bloomberg’s estimate that total brexit costs will have reached £200 billion by the end of this year. That’s around 25 years of EU subscriptions.

    I believe there’s research that shows people simply can’t get their heads around figures of that magnitude, which is probably just as well for anyone trying to maintain it’s money well spent.

  8. SOMERJOHN
    Hello to you.
    I think that book about the ‘Cameron Set’ by the wife of a Tory MP is a revealing study of the current political ruling class. It is redolent of Baldwin’s description of his party during the interwar years.

    In terms of polling and the GE of 2024, the malaise may lead the Tories to fall behind, if Covid 19 is not ‘beaten’ with the world class track and trace soon, and if the economy falters badly.

    However, IMO: Labour lack attack dogs such as it had with Wilson’s team in 63-64 and Blair; 94-97.

  9. YG daily ask:

    “Do you think the second wave of coronavirus in the UK has begun, is yet to come, or will never happen?”

    Has begun: 57%
    Not yet but will happen: 27%
    Will never happen: 7%
    DK: 9%

    “How well or badly do you think the government is handling the track and trace system?”

    Very/somewhat well: 13%
    Somewhat/very badly: 76%
    DK: 10%

    Net 63% “badly” (and even CON VI think net 42% badly)

    also a Ch5 poll that shows folks support the “rule of six” (66 – 23 = net 43)

    2c Boris+HMG are almost certainly going to need to “do more” on lockdown measures. Whether or not they work or not, how much immunity we might have in some pockets of population, etc?!? TBC.. but I think we’re past “squeaky bum time” and various polling overwhelmingly shows support for additional lockdown measures.

    Let’s all hope we do a lot better than Spring with regards to keeping C19 out of Care Homes, hospitals and Social Care (which no one seems to mention) and we can at least avoid the “nuclear” options (eg closing schools)

  10. Somerjohn

    “I haven’t seen a definitive study of this, but the picture I pull together from recent polls is that Tory VI is holding up in the heartlands and tumbling in the marginals.”

    I’ve been trying to work out the detailed picture from cross-breaks for a while. I’m not totally sure that you’re right on this, although Opinium’s cross-breaks for sets which the Tories gained in 2019 are encouraging for Labour – also, both main parties seem to be doing (relatively) better in each others’ seats than in those they hold.

    But the geographical cross-breaks are odd. The Tory vote seems to be holding up in the South West and in Wales, but Labour are clearly making progress in the North and most of the Midlands. And the South East of England shows the largest Con>Lab movement of all – while London shows the least movement of any English ‘region’.

    Having said that, the cross breaks by social class are fairly even with a 4-5 point swing in both ABC1 and C2DE.

  11. The Trvs,
    “…and we can at least avoid the “nuclear” options (eg closing schools)”

    Sweden did this throughout? How is that a success here?

  12. To add

    ‘How Labour is polling in Conservative seats’

    https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/polling-political-equality/

  13. @SOMERJOHN

    Someone should have explained that a Tory is for 4 and a bit years, not just Christmas.

    Bless.

  14. “You will note that when it comes to polling, people increasingly prefer to discuss things like the American elections. Politics discussion has been mostly destroyed on this board.”

    Lol. Immediately followed by a polling informed discussion of performance in marginal constituencies.

  15. @ JAMES E – Simpson has averaged the polling. I’d also look at the trend (and have posted comments on that).

    Anyway, in the latest Opinium (9Sep), VIHeadiine sheet, column BD in the .xls download

    Conservative gains in 2019 (change since GE’19)

    CON: 39 (-9)
    LAB: 52 (+14)
    LDEM: 4 (-3)

    Caveat is n=115 so higher MoE but the trend is Sir Keir’s friend.

    https://www.opinium.com/resource-center/voting-intention-9th-september/

    I very much doubt that has gone unnoticed in Cumming’s HQ and if it means they a/ do not betray Leave VI and b/ double down on levelling up then with 3.5yrs to a GE then fine by me – HMG need a kick up the jacksey, total shambles at the moment.

  16. TW

    Thanks for that – I recall that you posted the last three Opinium cross-breaks for Con2019Gains which showed an increasing Con> Lab swing. I’d want to combine these with his data to the end of August, which would overall suggest a slightly higher than average Con>Lab swing.

    With individual cross-breaks, you’ll always get some odd figures.

  17. @TREVOR WARNE

    “@ CARFREW – Thank you for some interesting articles and the discussion on leccy storage. I fully expect the science and research folks are aware of the ongoing issues and the tech will improve.

    Since “hydrogen” and “batteries” do more or less[1] seek to fill the same need in the market then perhaps like the Highlander – they’re can only be one and hydrogen will go the way of Betamax ;)”

    ——————

    Yes, enjoyed the convo., and it’s a challenging one, hard to be sure about the tech trends. A lot depends on the pace of battery development and whether it’ll be maintained.

    (However, batteries are so useful, that they attract a lot of investment and have been progressing for the last century or so).

    I would be a bit happier with nuclear solutions that reduced the cost and complexity etc. Incidentally, Hitachi are trying out a modular reactor in the Czech Republic…

    http://www.wilmingtonbiz.com/more_news/2020/02/05/more_milestones_for_ge_hitachis_small_modular_reactor_design/19918)

  18. @Hireton

    “Lol. Immediately followed by a polling informed discussion of performance in marginal constituencies.”

    ————

    You seem addicted to posting noise. My point was not that people no longer post on polling, indeed I gave an example of polling people favoured, e.g. American elections.

  19. @ JAMES E – If you do go back through the Opinium polling then can you post the week-week[1] numbers please (eg as net CON lead a few months back moving to LAB lead now). Whilst I’m broadly aware of the trend in that direction I haven’t copied the numbers down.

    x-breaks will be smaller ‘n’ and hence higher MoE but I’d say “interesting” rather than odd

    PS I copied out Simpson’s numbers for GE’19 result (reversing back his changes). I disagree slightly but that offsets with BXP now being 0% so not a big deal, especially given MoE.

    However, that does mean that CON have no UKIP/BXP to gobble up, where as in those seats LAB could snaffle up a bit of LDEM and Green on the ABC ticket.

    [1] Raw if poss and then add some fancy trend stuff or overall average if you like.

  20. @ CARFREW – You’d need 10 of those modular units (at 300MWe) for 1 Wylfa (2,900MWe) and IMO you don’t want to scatter nuclear plants all over the country – especially when Wylfa was pretty much “good to go”.

    TBC of course. A few smaller ones would be better than nothing.

  21. @Trev W

    Well, the idea is that combining numerous modules into a bigger plant would be quicker, safer, more flexible, cost-effective etc.

    And you can combine them with renewables etc.

    It sounds great on paper…

  22. @ Trevor Warne

    I understand the smaller modular reactors are UK plc designs, similar to what goes in a nuclear sub.

    Could be a good option, less demands on cooling water means inland locations would be suitable as well

  23. My guess is that more people who loaned their vote to the Tories at the 2019 GE are more likely to say DK as having voted for them for the first time they want to see how they get on.

    This does not mean they are likely tp switched back to Labour if they had been in 2017 or in the past as they had become disenchanted or that they wont vote Tory next time it is just that are not wedded.

  24. “Yes well, I felt the board could do without another blast of Indy straw men. Like you did to PTRP recently.”

    There was a perfectly amicable discussion of whether the Act of Union established a partnership or not!

    ““You will note that when it comes to polling, people increasingly prefer to discuss things like the American elections. ”

    Just imagine what it would be like if there was a presidential election in 7 weeks time and a whole series of polls about it at national and state level being published. Doesn’t bear thinking about.

  25. The extent to which this site focuses on Polling is largely governed by two factors substance and salience, how many polls their are and how important they are.

    In the past when elections were close in terms of time and vote there was a lot of polling and excitement. But now with the election years away and a majority of 80 there just isn’t as many polls and those there are really don’t matter as much.

    Peter.

  26. We have another by-election coming up soon in Aberdeen (Kincorth-Nigg-Cove in the City) and this one is looks as clear-cut as the shire one next week.

    But the likely winner in the City is SNP, cf SCON in Ellon.

    Thanks to Old Nat (Weds 10.55pm) for the useful link on Ellon that extrapolates from the original contest, with 4 candidates elected, to the by-election when just on candidate will win.

    The issues in the city election are the council`s over-zealous application of social distancing on shopping streets and along the sea front, and the likely loss of a pleasant park in Nigg for industrial development.

    The council could claim they are responding to a direction of the SNP government, while the local SNP will argue the road narrowing and loss of parking for shoppers has been done stupidly.

  27. on = one candidate will win

  28. Interesting link to how the ‘NHS’ track and trace system is run.

    https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/nhs-test-trace-private-sector_uk_5f6099e3c5b68d1b09c77477

  29. @ JIB / CARFREW – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/advanced-nuclear-technologies/advanced-nuclear-technologies

    and

    https://www.rolls-royce.com/products-and-services/nuclear/small-modular-reactors.aspx#/

    That info courtesy of a IOU pint for a mate involved with Bradwell[1] but no one knows what the “plan” is (and doubt that there is even is a plan what with the White Paper being kicked again), certainly multiple ideas that look great on paper with various folks championing their preferences ’tis all.

    For sure there are plenty of options and I hope nuclear is part of the “plan” (at least 10% of planned future capacity, ideally more like 20%)

    All I would say is that GB doesn’t have that many large lakes or rivers compared to a continent – but we are surrounded by sea, with old sites that have reached “end of life” or very near that point. Those sites have local expertise and a lot of the “planning’ already passed.

    PS We did also used to have a smaller twin unit in Trawsfynydd (old quarry, near Dinorwig, near JIB’s neck of the woods).

    “Small” is not new but you still can’t escape the maths. 1 x Wyfla (with planning etc all ready to go) = 10 x Small (with all kinds of issues to face, 5yrs+?)

    [1] If he was to bet on it then he’d pick Bradwell (ex-China) and Oldbury but that is coached with the phrase “I don’t have a f-ing Scooby” (Essex lad innit)

  30. @ON

    Please sir! Colin is trying to steal your position as the site’s cod psychologist!

    (Quite why cod require psychological analysis has never been clear).
    —————————————————————————————————

    He should have the post of salmon neuro-psychologist, more suitable to his neurological interpretations and an altogether grander and more appropriate position.

    Why cod? You need one when there is something psychologically fishy that needs investigation.

  31. The trevs,
    been looking more at the weekly update.

    I further notice in the intro to fig 14 incidence by region, that it makes an observation that the most affected age group is 20-29. However far from blaming this on partying it says ” this is entirely consistent with mixing patterns in this age group who may be more likely to be working away from home, including in public facing roles.

    So basically it’s because they have gone back to work.

    From weeks 31 to 37 the numbers of cases increase but approximately the numbers in each age group stay in proportion
    to each other. So no sudden outstripping other groups.
    They all look pretty much in the same relationship to each other across all the regions, which probably says something fundamental about how the virus spreads between age groups.

    There are similar graphs showing how age groups with different degrees of deprivation have fared. This only goes to 39 so no telling what the pensioners have been up to. However, the group showing the greatest surge is 17 to 19 years in the most affluent quintile. As cases have peaked and fallen back in the last couple of weeks, the poorest quintile has moved back into the lead, which it generally holds in every age group shown. Affluent 20-29 year olds also showed a surge though less marked.

    This might be a suggestion of a bit of a surge amongst rich kids partying. But obviously without the data for over 39 there is no telling if the pensioners have been wilder.

  32. @ON

    “Cod,” apart from fishy uses, has actually been slang since the late 17th century, but its original sense (for our purposes here) was to mean “fellow” (especially an old man) or, a bit more pungently, “fool” (“Ye vile drunken cod,” 1878)

    And ‘no’ I did not know that either, Come to think of it, it may have associations with codpiece and codswallop, a phrase I only came across as a supply teacher in London.

  33. In person voting in the presidential election has begun.

  34. Others will know better than me whether the JP Morgan decision to tell 200 staff to prepare to work in the EU instead of London is significant in terms of the City of London and the wider London economy.

    JPMorgan told about 200 staff today to plan to move out of London because it sees little prospect of the U.K. winning a deal on financial services

    https://t.co/4Mc475YZaG?amp=1

  35. My former conservative friends (still friends but no longer conservatives) are in despair. They feared Corbyn to an, in my view, irrational degree. They actually like Starmer, but a life-time of voting conservative has made them deeply reluctant to switch. As minded at present they would probably abstain, but they did get round to admitting that if Labour came up with a credible economic plan they would vote for it. As one said, at the moment they (conservatives) are adopting labour type policies and subsidising a vast proportion of the workforce, it is just that everything they do is so incompetent that one might at least have someone who believes in this kind of approach.

  36. Charles

    Thanks for that sourcing of the meaning. Turns out you were right to make the connection with codpiece

    (from Middle English: cod, meaning “scrotum”)

  37. Charles

    The equivalent to “cod” in Scots is “bawbag” – also used both as an anatomical term or a derogatory one – as used here to describe the 2011 Cyclone Friedhelm as “Hurricane Bawbag”.

  38. Big surge in rhinovirus amongst kids. Great news for the false alarm testing in schools. Surge of respiratory infections in care homes, but they don’t differentiate between covid, flu or ‘other’.

    Schools covid outbreaks conforming to the same geographical pattern as general cases. So fewer in the south.

    The percentage of covid cases in care homes has fallen over the last ten weeks, but across that time it had a peak at double its current rate 4 weeks ago.

    Test and trace continues to trace mostly people living in the same household.

    It confirms that people attending emergency departments because of covid are only a proportion of the total who attend with covid.

    Hospitalisations with covid are of course lowest in the south west and south east. East next. Then London. Herd immunity strikes again.

  39. @Trevor Warne

    “All I would say is that GB doesn’t have that many large lakes or rivers compared to a continent – but we are surrounded by sea, with old sites that have reached “end of life” or very near that point. Those sites have local expertise and a lot of the “planning’ already passed.”

    100mw SMR would need about 5000-10000 litres per second flow to cool it, so well suited for some of the summer regulated rivers. Many of these rivers have / had coal power stations.

    Coastal of course better, unlimited pumped cooling there.

  40. Charles sounds like typical DK/WNV most of which returns home at GEs in the end

  41. ROBBIE

    I Think Dido will be remembered; but for the wrong reasons.

  42. Johnson on the news saying this new outbreak was inevitable. Yet there is no new outbreak in the south.

    Not inevitable then.

  43. @Hireton

    “There was a perfectly amicable discussion of whether the Act of Union established a partnership or not!”

    ———

    Lol.

  44. @Hireton

    “Just imagine what it would be like if there was a presidential election in 7 weeks time and a whole series of polls about it at national and state level being published. Doesn’t bear thinking about.”

    ———-

    Once again, you’re acting as if I said otherwise. I have imagined it and I’m very much looking forward to it! Are you looking forward to taking a break from Indy?

  45. TW (re Your 6:48pm)

    I’ve had a look back over the past 5 Opinium Polls (so from 25 July), which have shown Con leads of 4,3,3,0,3. So the average is a 3 point Tory lead and a Con>Lab swing in England and Wales of around 4.5%.

    The Headline picture confirms the view of Simpson’s blog – in fact the apparent swings are all larger. The average swings across the 5 Opinium cross-breaks compared to GE2019 are:

    Lab Held seats: 4 points swing Lab> Con (!)
    Con Held Seats: 11.5 points swing Con> Lab
    Con 2019 Gain seats: 6 points swing Con> Lab

    And the detail:

    Lab Holds were Con 28, Lab 54.
    Opinium last 5 average is Con 34, Lab 52
    In order, Con was 32,30, 41, 33, 33 (Av 34)
    Lab was 52,57, 48,51,53 (Av 52)

    Con Holds were Con 58, Lab 23
    Opinium last 5 average is Con 47, Lab 35
    In order, Con = 47,48,46,47,49 (Av 47)
    Lab = 35,33,37,37,35 (Av 35)

    Con 2019 Gains were Con 48, Lab 38
    Opinium last 5 average is Con 44, Lab 46
    Con was 50,46,43,42,39 (Av 44)
    Lab was 39,44,47,49,52 (Av 46)

    (In all cases, most recent polls shown last. Sample sizes for each poll, approx: Con Holds: 520; Lab Holds:280; Con Gains :115 )

  46. @Danny – “Surge of respiratory infections in care homes, but they don’t differentiate between covid, flu or ‘other’.”

    Except that they do.

    “729 new ARI incidents have been reported in week 37 (Figure 19):•313 incidents were from care homes where 228 had at least one linked case that tested positive for SARS-CoV-2”

    Correcting the rubbish you keep churning out is a thankless task, and one that I’ve largely given up on, but now and then I think I should keep my hand in.

  47. Quoting my own post on Opinium cross-breaks:

    “Lab Held seats: 4 points swing Lab> Con (!)
    Con Held Seats: 11.5 points swing Con> Lab”

    If this happened, the Tories would gain Sunderland Central, but lose Bournemouth East and West to Labour !

  48. I’ve also rather given up on the daily statistics updates, largely because there is now no need. Everybody now understands that there is a second wave. Very sad that the right people couldn’t see what the data was saying, stretching back to the middle of July. The inevitability of this makes it feel doubly painful, I must say.

    There are still a few loose ends to tie up in some people’s minds though. Even up until very recent days, we’ve had plenty of comment about the apparent lack of hospitalisations and the low death toll, as if that means everything is going to be fine. Like good comedy – pandemics are all about the timing.

    This insouciance carried on, even as other countries ahead of us in the second wave showed clearly what was coming, so now we have warning lights flashing once more in the NHS. Only have to wait another two or three weeks for confirmation of the next stage. With a seven day rolling average death toll up to 17 from 7 two weeks ago, that measure is also on the move, and will continue to rise for a while yet.

    A summer of lost opportunity, and an autumn of lost lives is the result. NHS Test and Trace isn’t run by the NHS, can’t trace enough people and is failing at testing. Apart from those minor issues, it’s world beating!

    Lady Harding’s abject failure, and Johnson’t unerring support for her mediocrity, is what has placed us here. Throughout the summer, she ran a world beating system where less than 12% of potential contacts were isolating properly – that is the dreadful failure that created this wasted summer.

    Now autumn closes in, the death count mounts once again, and the fundamental flaws in the UK response, so cruelly exposed in the spring, are once more prised open and displayed to all. The most ineffective government in modern times up against the most dfficult public health challenge in a century was always going to be a disaster, but there was at least some hope that we could learn from the mistakes. Even I didn’t think Boris was so bad he would just walk into the same door twice.

    For those who still think that herd immunity will ride up on it’s gleaming white unicorn to save us, think on the fact that Iran is now starting their third wave.

    Good public health measures are all we’ve got here, and they need good governments to deliver them. Strap in and prepare for turbulence. Boris is in charge.

  49. @ Danny

    “Hospitalisations with covid are of course lowest in the south west and south east. East next. Then London. Herd immunity strikes again.”

    Except that in London the Mayor is concerned:

    “Londoners should also know that I am extremely concerned by the latest evidence I’ve seen today from public health experts about the accelerating speed at which Covid-19 is now spreading here in London.”

    “The number of cases per 100,000 people over seven days is reported to have increased in London from 18.8 to around 25.”

    I’m not going to make predictions but everything is starting to show the same pattern of exponential growth that we have been seeing in Spain and France. People were commenting a few weeks back about where are the hospitalisations and deaths- these are now coming through in those places and our own hospitalisations have doubled in a week.

    So yes, London is relatively calm, but clearly there are a lot of experts thinking it is not going to stay that way.

  50. Alec

    It’s not all down to the incompetence of UKGE. Obvious though that is.

    Were that the case, then the rest of Western Europe wouldn’t have gone / be going/ will go through the same process.

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