Tonight’s YouGov/Sun poll has topline figures of CON 37%, LAB 42%, LDEM 10%. The Labour lead is obvously bigger than the 1 point lead yesterday, but it remains much lower than YouGov have been showing for most of August and July.

Throughout most of the last two months (in fact, pretty much since the phone hacking scandal broke) YouGov’s daily polling has been showing a steady Labour lead of around about 7-9 points. We’ve now had four YouGov polls in a row showing a Labour lead below that, between 1-5 points. My impression is that there has been a genuine shift, that the underlying lead has narrowed to something closer to 3-5 points.

The natural reaction when there is a shift in the polls is to ask why – see Paul Waugh and James Kirkup for example, pondering about whether it might be a Libya bounce or a law-and-order effect after the riots. I’m slightly dubious about either explanation – the narrowing in the polls seems too delayed to be a riot effect, and I’m always doubtful about the impact of foreign affairs stories – true, more people think Cameron’s handled Libya well than badly, but Cameron’s general approval ratings and perceptions of his qualities haven’t particularly changed. That said, I don’t really have any better explanation to offer up, and the timing appears to chime with Libya – perhaps the government’s handling of the riots and Libya have just given a generally more competent image, or perhaps it’s merely an absence of conspicous bad news for a few weeks.

210 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 37, LAB 42, LDEM 10”

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  1. Pete B

    Sim City

    Now there’s a blast from the past. It came free with my second pc and I spent the entire night I set it up managing my poor city against vall that fiendish programmers could throw at it. Think I got to the year 2350 or thereabouts.

    That’s about my only knowledge of Planning too. There are always tensions which can only be felt and understood locally. The danger of the power fo middle class nimby power on this is of course that the poorst and most vulnerable who are often the leats articulate will basically bear the brunt of most of the local tensions.

    Sustainability is a challenge to us all. We need to define it, assess its costs, and manage planning based upon it. Realistically that requires some kind of trained objective professionals to make decisions rather than folk not liking the windmills on the moor. I for one have no expertise onm such issues and would not claim any.

    I fear localism on planning will mean amateurish ad-hoc planning where developments are not put where they objectively should go, but where they will be politically acceptable. Of course that happens already!

  2. @ Rob Sheffield
    “I could not agree more- also on Blair and Brown being anti planning/ not really believing in strategic approaches to sustainability.”

    I don’t work i the environmental sector but I know plenty of people who do, esp. in what you might call green-space areas. They tell me that scores of environmental agencies which were doing good work in the Labour era have been abolished/dratically run down since May 2010 because the money has stopped. This includes the Regional Development Agencies, starved of funds, and abolished from April next year. It’s fashionable to scoff at the Blair-Brown era but from their point of view the sector, once alive, is on its knees. This government made a mess of its forest sell-off policy & is now rushing through changes to rural planning laws. Today’s Telegraph — yes a “friend” to the rich rural lobby — was defending Labour;s record!

  3. ‘I fear localism on planning will mean amateurish ad-hoc planning where developments are not put where they objectively should go, but where they will be politically acceptable. Of course that happens already!’

    And NIMBY rules off course

  4. Latest YouGov/Sun poll

    CON 36%

    LAB 42%

    LDEM 10%

    Well well well

  5. Robbiealive

    Labour as a whole did a lot of good- the much maligned Prescott for example.

    Though there was also much room for improvement i.e. their fondness for jargon and acronyms.

    But Blair and Brown were never that interested or that supportive of either ‘spatial planning’ or ‘environmental sustainability’.

    Anyone who works in the “environmental sector” will say the same.

  6. iceman

    “I fear localism on planning will mean amateurish ad-hoc planning where developments are not put where they objectively should go, but where they will be politically acceptable”

    You are amongst many

  7. Rob Sheffield

    Thanks for the links.

    “I never agree with you or Dick-in-Norge. I don’t on this occasion either, it sounds like anti- coalition agit-prop to me.”

    Looks like the old gang’s back Chou-isn’t that nice?-wonder where they’ve all beewn ? :-)

  8. Several comments mentioning NIMBY’ism but who, faced with a large inappropriate development in their back yard would not object? I suspect we would all be NIMBY’s in the right circumstances.

    I have mixed feelings on this whole issue. I agree with Neil that far more use of ‘brownfield’ sites should be made for large developments. However I feel that individuals should have much more freedom to extend their own house, or build another at the bottom of the garden if the plot is large enough, or convert redundant farm buildings into accommodation. There are far too many restrictions in these areas.

    My own experience of dealing with planning officers is that they are usually negative, glass half empty types who will give you 20 reasons why you can’t do it; Generally jobsworths. Building regs inspectors by contrast are usually very practical & helpful people, who will bend over backwards to help.

    So in summary, I don’t want the greenbelt to be concreted over but I would like planning officers to have their wings clipped a bit. I guess I will have to read the bill to see exactly what is proposed.

  9. You have to pay VAT for renovating existing buildings but new builds are VAT free. Any government that was serious about encouraging brownfield development would correct this anomaly before even thinking about tinkering with planning laws.

  10. iceman nsns

    “The split voting is of course why the Tories can’t win seats in Scotland. Even at Holyrood this year their key targets in fptp seats ( Dumfries and Eastwood were lost relatively massively to Labour, yet both had SNP winning most votes on the list. ”

    How did split voting anti-Cons know how to do that so that they could vote as a bloc?

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