Political

Latest general election voting intention opinion polls

Hello! I’m Mark Pack, author of both 101 Ways To Win An Election and Bad News: what the headlines don’t tell us, along with maintaining the largest database of national voting intention polls in the UK, stretching back to 1943.

The next general election is most likely several years away, but political polling of voting intentions for a general election is in full swing. Half-a-dozen firms are polling regularly, with a handful of occasional surveys from others too.

Below the table, you’ll find the option to sign up to email updates about new polls and also a set of answers to frequently asked questions about political polling. You might also find my podcast interview with one of the UK’s leading pollsters of interest.

General election voting intention polls

Pollster Con Lab LD Grn RUK Con lead Fieldwork
Redfield &
Wilton
44%
(+1)
34%
(-2)
10%
(+3)
4%
(-1)
3%
(nc)
10% 19/4
Savanta ComRes 43%
(+1)
34%
(-1)
7%
(nc)
4%
(nc)
-%
(-)
9% 16-18/4
Survation 40%
(-3)
34%
(-1)
9%
(+1)
7%
(+3)
-%
(-)
6% 15-19/4
YouGov 43%
(+2)
29%
(-5)
8%
(+2)
8%
(+2)
3%
(nc)
14% 13-14/4
Deltapoll 45%
(+1)
36%
(nc)
6%
(nc)
4%
(nc)
4%
(+1)
9% 8-10/4
Opinium 45%
(+4)
36%
(-1)
6%
(nc)
4%
(-1)
1%+
(-1)
9% 8-9/4
Kantar 42%
(+2)
34%
(+1)
9%
(-2)
4%
(-2)
2%
(-1)
8% 21-25/2
BMG 39%
(-)
37%
(-)
9%
(-)
6%
(-)
3%
(-)
2% 16-19/3
NCP 42%
(-1)
37%
(nc)
7%
(+2)
5%
(nc)
2%
(-1)
5% 12-16/3
Ipsos MORI 45%
(+3)
38%
(nc)
6%
(-1)
5%
(-3)
7% 5-12/3

– indicates that party didn’t feature in the polling questions separate from ‘Others’ or that the data is not yet available.
RUK = Brexit Party or Reform Party.
+ = Ukip rather than Brexit / Reform.
nc = no change from previous comparable poll. na = not applicable, i.e. there isn’t a previous comparable poll.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why isn’t polling company X in the table?

The table above includes the latest UK or British voting intention poll from each of the currently active reputable pollsters.

If a company isn’t listed this is because it has not carried out a recent poll, it isn’t reputable or I’ve made an error. Please get in touch if you suspect it’s the latter. ‘Reputable’ usually means being a member of the polling industry regulatory body, the British Polling Council (BPC). I occasionally make exceptions, such as for a new polling firm with a good pedigree which hasn’t yet had its BPC membership approved.

Margins of error

A rough idea of the likely margin of error in any one opinion poll is to think that it’s pretty likely to be within 3 percentage points of the correct result. Anthony Wells explains here in more detail what this margin of error calculation means, and why it does not strictly apply to modern polls. Based on the historic record of polls, the British Polling Council requires its members to use this explanation of the margin of error:

All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error. On the basis of the historical record of the polls at recent general elections, there is a 9 in 10 chance that the true value of a party’s support lies within 4 points of the estimates provided by this poll, and a 2 in 3 chance that they lie within 2 points.

What are the longer-term trends?

When looking through the polling figures, remember the much ignored but still very relevant warning about individual polls.

To put the voting intention numbers above into longer context, take a look at PollBase, my database of general election voting intention figures from opinion polls going back to 1945. It is updated quarterly.

What about the SNP and Plaid?

Separate figures are not given for the SNP and Plaid because the relative size of Scotland and Wales means that the percentage vote share for each of the across Great Britain is too low for variations to mean much. (For example, at the 2017 general election, the SNP scored 3% of the total vote across Great Britain. A fall to 2% would be a move that is well within the margin of errors on polls yet also, if accurate, would be a massive hammering in the constituencies it contests.)

What about Northern Ireland?

These polls are for Great Britain, i.e. excluding Northern Ireland but including both Scotland and Wales, except for Survation, who include Northern Ireland. General election voting intention polls conducted over a smaller area, such as London only, are excluded.

Has the choice of parties biased the poll?

A plausible-sounding critique of voting intention opinion polls is over the choice of parties to ask about. These polls list some parties up front and then give an ‘other’ option, behind which sits other, much smaller parties. Labour, for example, will be in the first category but the Women’s Equality Party in the second. Which often leads people to complain that a poll is biased against party X because it is listed in the other section rather than in the main party listing. That sounds plausible, but the evidence is that this doesn’t unfairly depress the support for other parties.

Aren’t polls just wildly inaccurate these days?

Not so: the evidence is that they are still pretty good – and haven’t got worse. Here’s the data that does that myth-busting.

Are the opinion pollsters regulated?

Yes, by the Market Research Society and also by the British Polling Council, which all the reputable political polling firms are members of. The BPC’s rules include requiring pollsters to publish in full the exact questions asked for their polls, protecting against leading questions being secretly asked.

How come I don’t know anyone who has been polled?

You do now.

How can I find out more about understanding polls?

There’s a whole chapter on the subject in my book, Bad News.

6 responses to “Latest general election voting intention opinion polls”

  1. Forgive me pointing out that the SNP is regularly achieving over 50% in Scotland just now which would be around 5% of the UK vote in a General election. Missing the SNP out from the Opinion Poll results when they are getting a larger share than the Greens is perverse.

  2. Why is Electoral Calculus not on your list? On their online home page, they claim to have been ‘The best predictor of the 2019 UK General Election’. Do you have specific reservations about the quality of their predictions (and claims)?

    In addition, as I am sure you are well aware, we do not have ‘General Elections’ in the UK. With our lousy electoral process, we have 650 autonomous (albeit simultaneous) by-elections, and the data required for all campaigning insight and planning is the vote-share by party within each of the 650 seats which matter (i.e. not the vote-share by party within the the UK, GB or England). Electoral Calculus appears to be the only polling organisation which ‘engages with’ that primary requirement. Again, do you have specific reservations about the quality of their predictions (and claims)?

    • Electoral Calculus is a polling aggregator, i.e. it does its predictions based on voting intention polls that others publish rather than doing any polling of its own. The table above is a list of actual polls, and hence as Electoral Calculus doesn’t do its own polls, that’s why it isn’t in there.

      • Many thanks for the response. I do understand your distinction between prime-pollers and aggregators, and your your reasons for excluding aggregators. However, my main point remains. I was/am not concerned with the source of insights. I was/am concerned with the quality of the insights, and with what one does with those insights. My point was/is that the data required for all campaigning insight and planning is the vote-share by party within each of the 650 autonomous seats (i.e. not the vote-share by party within the the UK, GB or England), and Electoral Calculus appears to be the only polling organisation which ‘engages with’ that primary requirement. As an example, in the 2019 UK General Election, Electoral Calculus data could have been used to identify the 60 or so Con marginals (they were all Con-Lab marginals, but that was irrelevant) which could have been ‘converted’ to Lab wins through an optimum tactical-voting ‘arrangement’ (with or without Lab co-operation). That could/would have reduced the Con ‘seat-haul’ down below 310 without boosting Lab above 300. That could/would have ‘arranged’ a hung Commons, and an opportunity for a C&S ‘arrangement’ for ‘constitutional reform’. Was that sequence of ‘arrangements’ considered as an alternative to the actual UTR tactical-voting ‘arrangement’ (which predictably proved to be a bit of a damp squid)? Could you consider providing an (additional exposition of seat-level insights?

      • Extrapolating seat totals from national votes share opinion polls is, perhaps surprisingly, a pretty decent way of forecasting seat numbers. Far from perfect, but other approaches – such as marginal seat polls, or accumulating individual constituency polls – have a pretty poor record, at least in British general elections. So starting with national vote totals is as good a starting point as any, and better than many, for thinking about how many seats different parties are likely to end up with. The Electoral Calculus approach is one way of doing that, but what it gains from sophistication it loses from the additional assumptions/estimates that have to be made in its calculations. So an interesting but also brittle set of figures. For a basic ‘how are the parties doing?’ yardstick, therefore, the earlier (and so more robust, though of course not perfect) stage of looking at vote shares has a lot to commend it. Otherwise, I think it’s the full on MRP type calculations that are best, as they are based on more detailed evidence about the voters.

  3. Thanks, mark. A very useful service, especially to us Lib Dem activists !

    Taking a crude average of the 10 polls, that gives us an average of 7.6%

    One hopes that the polls where the fieldwork was done in April are a better indicator, as those 3 polls give us an average of 8% !

    Onwards and upwards !

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