My speech to Turcan Connell and Charlotte Street Partners in Edinburgh

By Lord Ashcroft

This is the text of a speech I gave last night in Edinburgh. I was introduced by Chris Deerin.

Thank you, Chris, for that kind welcome, and can I say what an honour it is to be introduced by Scotland’s Columnist Of The Year? Those of you who read Chris’s work will know that the accolade he received at the Scottish Press Awards was thoroughly well deserved, and that his writing is always brilliant – provocative, honest, thoughtful and original.

While I’m at it, I might as well add that such is his incisive grasp of public affairs, any of you who are not retaining the services of his company should have your people call his people first thing in the morning. (more…)

South Swindon, Thanet South and Sheffield Hallam

By Lord Ashcroft

Today’s batch of marginal snapshots includes three of the most intriguing and closely contested seats of this general election campaign.

South Swindon is a very tight Conservative-Labour marginal which I have polled twice before, finding a tie both times (more…)

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 36%, Lab 30%, Lib Dem 9%, UKIP 11%, Green 7%

ANP line 150427

By Lord Ashcroft

The Conservatives lead Labour by 36% to 30% in this week’s Ashcroft National Poll, conducted over the past weekend. The Tories are up two points since last week and Labour are unchanged. The Liberal Democrats are down a point at 9%, UKIP down two at 11%, the Greens up three at 7% and the SNP down two at 4%. The Conservatives have now led in six of the last eight rounds, and this week’s finding equals the highest the party has yet recorded in the ANP – though the figures are within the margin of error of a much closer result (more…)

Are UKIP falling back in their target seats?

By Lord Ashcroft

My latest round of constituency polling covers four seats in which I have previously found UKIP to be doing well. These include two seats where I found the party in second place to the Tories (Castle Point and Great Yarmouth), and two where I found them second to Labour (Cannock Chase and Great Grimsby) (more…)

Six more marginals…

By Lord Ashcroft

My latest battleground polling I have looked at six seats, three of which I have not surveyed before.

In Bristol North West, Charlotte Leslie is well ahead in the seat she won for the Conservatives in 2010 in a three-way fight with the Liberal Democrats. Elsewhere in the city, the Green Party has been heavily targeting Bristol West, a seat the Lib Dems won in 2010 with a 20-point majority over Labour (more…)

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 34%, Lab 30%, Lib Dem 10%, UKIP 13%, Green 4%


By Lord Ashcroft

The Conservatives lead Labour by 34% to 30% in this week’s Ashcroft National Poll, conducted over the past weekend. The Tories are up one point since last week and Labour are down three. The changes are within the margin of error, suggesting that the parties’ national vote shares remain very close. UKIP are unchanged at 13%, the Liberal Democrats up one point at 10%, the Greens down two points at 4%, and the SNP up two points at 6%.

With just over two weeks to go to election day I asked people whether they were moving towards or away from each of the main parties (more…)

Latest Scottish constituency polling

By Lord Ashcroft

In my latest round of constituency polling I have returned to Scotland. This selection includes eight seats, including five I have polled before (East Renfrewshire, Glasgow South West, Paisley & Renfrewshire South, Ross, Skye & Lochaber, and Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale) and three new ones (Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk, East Dunbartonshire and North East Fife).

I wanted to know whether the SNP surge had subsided in places I had previously surveyed; whether it threatened other incumbents, especially Lib Dems; and whether there were any potential surprises in store. The answers are no, yes and yes (more…)

More Conservative-Labour marginals

By Lord Ashcroft

In my last round of polling in Conservative-Labour marginals I found the Tories consolidating in most seats where they had been ahead in previous rounds, while Labour had extended their leads where they had been doing well last year. Some races were very close and Labour had taken the lead in one constituency where the Tories had been ahead in December.

The lack of a consistent pattern in the battleground has led me to look further down the Conservative defence list to see whether there could be some surprises in seats which ought, on paper, to be safer for the Tories (more…)

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 33%, Lab 33%, Lib Dem 9%, UKIP 13%, Green 6%


By Lord Ashcroft

Labour and the Conservatives are tied at 33% in this week’s Ashcroft National Poll, conducted over the past weekend. Both parties are down since the last ANP two weeks ago (Labour by one point, the Tories by three); UKIP and the Lib Dems are each up three points at 13% and 9% respectively, with the Greens down one at 6% and the SNP unchanged at 4%.

Most parties and leaders were given better marks than was the case when I last asked people to rate them in February (more…)

Parties can’t change in four weeks what they’ve failed to change in five years

Conservative Q

By Lord Ashcroft

My most recent constituency polling has found an increase in support for Labour and the Conservatives – and, in their own battlegrounds, the Liberal Democrats – while the UKIP share has drifted down since last year. Even so, neither of the main parties has established a clear overall lead, either in national polling or in the marginals. So while the evidence is that voters may be focusing more on the parties capable of forming a government, they are not finding the choice becoming any easier or more palatable.

The latest large-scale national polling I have conducted on the impact of the campaign helps explain why (more…)