Voting Intentions in Great Britain 1976-1987

Q1 How would you vote if there were a General Election tomorrow? (Ask those undecided / refused) Q2 Which party are you most inclined to support?

This page shows the "headline" voting intention figures from all our published polls up to the 1987 general election.

Please note that our "headline" figures at this period were not calculated on the same basis as the ones we publish today: figures were based on the responses of all those giving a voting intention, regardless of how certain they were that they would vote. Since November 2002, our headline figure has been the voting intentions of those “absolutely certain to vote”; however, voting intentions from our polls since 2002 calculated on the same basis as used in the 1979-87 period can be found here.

All polls shown in the table were conducted with face-to-face interviewing.

1987-1997 | 1997-2002 | Since 2002

Q1 How would you vote if there were a General Election tomorrow? (Ask those undecided / refused)

Q2 Which party are you most inclined to support?

1976 Con Lab Lib Other Lab lead
over Con
  % % % % ± %
18-19 March 1976 40 47 9 4 +7
8-9 April 1976 40 46 10 4 +6
1977 Con Lab Lib Other Lab lead
over Con
  % % % % ± %
March 1977 47 38 12 6 -9
21-22 September 1977 49 42 5 4 -7
25-26 October 1977 45 44 7 4 -1
1978 Con Lab Lib Other Lab lead
over Con
  % % % % ± %
12-13 April 1978 46 44 7 3 -2
24 May 1978 45 46 6 3 +1
13 June 1978 46 45 6 3 -1
11 July 1978 49 41 6 4 -8
July 1978 48 42 6 4 -6
14 August 1978 47 44 6 3 -3
4 September 1978 47 45 5 3 -2
11 September 1978 48 42 8 2 -6
8 November 1978 47 46 5 3 -1
1979 Con Lab Lib Other Lab lead
over Con
  % % % % ± %
30 January-1 February 1979 55 36 6 3 -19
3-5 March 1979 52 39 7 2 -13
29 March 1979 51 42 5 2 -9
1-2 April 1979* 51 38 10 1 -13
8-9 April 1979** 49 39 10 2 -10
16-17 April 1979** 50 38 10 2 -12
21-23 April 1979** 46 40 11 3 -6
26 April 1979** 44 41 12 3 -3
30 April-1 May 1979** (P) 44 39 14 3 -5
2 May 1979** 45 37 15 3 -8
General election result (3 May) 45 38 14 3 -7
August 1979 44 45 9 2 +1
September 1979 42 43 12 2 +1
October 1979 41 46 11 2 +5
21 November - 2 December 1979 40 45 13 3 +5

* Asked as, "How will you vote at the General Election on May 3rd?"
** Asked as, "How do you think you will vote at the General Election on 3 May?"

(P) = Panel survey

1980 Con Lab Lib Other Lab lead
over Con
  % % % % ± %
18-19 January 1980 39 47 12 2 +8
January 1980 40 43 14 3 +3
21-25 February 1980 38 46 14 2 +8
March 1980 38 46 13 3 +8
27-28 March 1980 42 46 9 3 +4
24-28 April 1980 39 44 14 3 +5
19-23 June 1980 41 43 13 3 +2
24-27 July 1980 37 47 13 2 +10
August 1980 37 48 13 2 +11
25-29 September 1980 37 46 15 2 +9
October 1980 34 50 15 2 +16
11 November 1980 38 47 13 2 +9
November 1980 36 50 13 1 +14
18-19 December 1980 32 56 11 1 +24
1981 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
22-? January 1981 35 45 17 - - 4 +10  
?-23 February 1981 33 41 17 8 - 2 +8
19-23 March 1981 28 38 17 15 - 2 +10
23-27 April 1981 30 38 17 12 - 2 +8
9-11 May 1981 38 41 12 7   3 +3
29-30 May 1981 35 39 14 10 - 2 +4
15-16 June 1981 37 39 11 11 - 3 +2
18-22 June 1981 31 39 16 12 - 3 +6
July 1981 30 36 13 18 - 2 +6
August 1981 30 39 13 16 - 2 +9
14-18 September 1981 27 38 16 17 - 2 +11
28 September 1981 28 42 11 17 - 2 +14
23-27 October 1981 27 31 14 26 - 2 +4
27 November - 1 December 1981 27 27 8 16 19 2 0 44
10-14 December 1981 27 29 11 19 13 1 +2 43
1982 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
21-25 January 1982 29 30 12 15 13 1 +1 40
February 1982 30 33 12 11 11 3 +3 34
March 1982 34 34 11 11 8 2 0 30
14 April 1982 33 34       3 +1 30
20-21 April 1982 (P) 36 30       3 -6 31
23-24 April 1982 (P) 39 32       2 -7 27
April 1982 35 30 10 11 12 2 -5 33
30 April 1982 43 30       2 -13 25
3-5 May 1982 (P) 38 32       2 -6 28
May 1982 44 30 10 7 7 1 -14 25
16 May 1982 48 33       2 -15 17
23 May 1982 48 31       1 -17 20
25-26 May 1982 (P) 51 25       2 -26 23
21-23 June 1982 (P) 51 24       1 -27 23
June 1982 48 28 10 8 6 1 -20 23
July 1982 45 31 10 4 8 1 -14 22
August 1982 44 30 9 6 8 2 -14 24
September 1982 42 30 13 4 10 1 -12 27
7-12 October 1982 42 33 10 5 8 2 -9 23
21-26 October 1982 43 32 10 6 8 2 -11 23
4-10 November 1982 42 33 10 5 8 2 -9 23
18-24 November 1982 43 35 9 6 6 2 -8 21
9-15 December 1982 42 35 10 6 6 2 -7 21

(P) = Panel survey

1983 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
5-12 January 1983 44 35       1 -9 20
20-26 January 1983 44 36 8 5 6 * -8 19
3-9 February 1983 45 32       2 -13 21
17-23 February 1983 46 32 10 5 6 * -14 21
26 February 1983 39 26       1 -13 34
3-9 March 1983 41 27       2 -14 30
16 March 1983 42 28       3 -14 27
17-23 March 1983 43 28 9 8 10 1 -15 28
7-12 April 1983 43 34       1 -9 22
17-23 April 1983 46 33 10 4 7 1 -13 20
21-25 April 1983 45 30       2 -15 23
5-11 May 1983 46 32 9 4 9 * -14 22
6 May 1983 45 34       1 -11 20
10 May 1983* 46 31       2 -15 21
12 May 1983* 49 34       2 -15 15
16 May 1983* 44 37       2 -7 17
17-18 May 1983* (P) 47 30       2 -17 21
19 May 1983* 46 37       1 -9 16
19-23 May 1983* 49 33       1 -16 17
23 May 1983* 51 33       1 -18 15
24-25 May 1983* (P) 46 30       1 -16 23
26 May 1983* 51 29       2 -22 18
31 May 1983* 44 32       3 -12 21
1-3 June 1983* (P) 45 28       2 -17 25
2 June 1983* 43 32       2 -11 23
6-7 June 1983* (P) 47 26       2 -21 25
8 June 1983* 44 28       2 -16 26
General election result (9 June) 44 28   2 -16 26
16-20 June 1983 43 27 11 6 12 1 -16 29
21-25 July 1983 44 30 11 6 8 1 -14 25
18-22 August 1983 46 30 9 5 8 2 -16 22
22-26 September 1983 45 27 13 5 8 1 -18 26
20-24 October 1983 42 37 8 4 7 2 -5 19
31 October-1 November 1983 43 35       2 -8 20
17-21 November 1983 39 37 10 5 7 2 -2 22
2 December 1983 44 37       1 -7 18
5-9 December 1983 42 37 10 3 7 1 -5 19
16 December 1983 40.5 39.5       2 -1 18

* Asked as, "How do you think you will vote at the General Election on 9 June?"

1984 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
5-11 January 1984 42 37 10 3 7 1 -5 19
16-20 February 1984 41 38 10 4 6 2 -3 19
14-20 March 1984 41 40 8 3 6 1 -1 17
24-25 April 1984 42 36       2 -6 20
25 April -1 May 1984 40 39 10 3 7 * -1 20
24-29 May 1984 40 38 8 4 9 1 -2 21
21-25 June 1984 39 39 7 3 11 1 0 21
19-23 July 1984 37 40 7 4 9 2 +3 20
16-20 August 1984 39 39 9 4 8 1 0 21
17-21 September 1984 42 36 9 3 7 2 -6 20
3-4 October 1984 43 35       3 -8 19
18-22 October 1984 44 35 7 4 9 2 -9 20
15-19 November 1984 43 35 8 4 7 3 -8 19
6-10 December 1984 40 36 8 5 9 2 -4 22
1985 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
2-7 January 1985 42 34 9 4 8 3 -8 21
15-20 January 1985 39 35       2 -4 24
6 February 1985 37 37       2 0 24
16-18 February 1985 38 40       3 +2 19
19-24 February 1985 39 35 10 4 10 2 -4 24
21-22 March 1985 37 39       2 +2 22
19-24 March 1985 36 40 9 4 10 1 +4 23
23-28 April 1985 38 37       1 -1 24
7-13 May 1985 34 36       2 +2 28
21-26 May 1985 33 35 11 6 13 2 +2 30
18-23 June 1985 35 36 10 5 12 2 +1 27
16-21 July 1985 33 34 12 8 12 2 +1 31
13-18 August 1985 31 35 10 9 12 3 +4 31
3-8 September 1985 31 37       1 +6 31
17-22 September 1985 30 33 10 7 18 2 +3 35
2-3 October 1985 34 36       2 +2 28
15-20 October 1985 37 36 9 5 11 2 -1 25
28 October 1985 38 36       1 -2 25
19-24 November 1985 36 36 9 6 11 2 0 25
3-8 December 1985 35 35 9 7 13 2 0 28
1986 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
4-8 January 1986 33 38 10 6 12 2 0 28
18-22 January 1986 33 36       2 +3 29
8-12 February 1986 33 37       1 +4 29
22-26 February 1986 34 35 8 7 15 1 +1 30
20-21 March 1986 31 39       2 +8 28
22-26 March 1986 34 36 7 5 15 2 +2 28
16 April 1986 32 43       1 +11 24
19-23 April 1986 34 39 7 6 12 2 +5 25
1-2 May 1986 36 38       3 +2 23
16-20 May 1986 32 40 8 3 15 2 +8 26
6-10 June 1986 35 39       2 +4 24
20-24 June 1986 34 40 8 5 11 2 +6 23
18-22 July 1986 36 37 10 4 11 2 +1 25
30-31 July 1986 32 41       2 +9 25
15-19 August 1986 37 37 9 4 11 2 0 24
5-9 September 1986 37 41       3 +4 19
19-23 September 1986 35 37 7 6 13 2 +2 26
3-7 October 1986 37 42       2 +5 19
17-22 October 1986 39 41 6 4 7 2 +2 17
3-4 November 1986 40 39       3 -1 18
20-26 November 1986 41 39 7 4 8 2 -2 18
27-30 December 1986 39 38 10 6 6 2 -1 21
1987 Con Lab Lib SDP Alliance Other Lab lead
over Con
Total
Alliance
  % % % % % % ± % %
23-28 January 1987 39 38 7 5 9 2 -1 21
6-10 February 1987 39 36 5 5 13 2 -3 23
20-25 February 1987 41 35 6 3 11 3 -6 21
6-11 March 1987 41 32 6 6 13 2 -9 21
19-20 March 1987 39 33       2 -6 26
26 March - 2 April 1987 41 29 8 4 17 1 -12 29
10-12 April 1987 42 29       3 -13 26
24-30 April 1987 44 31 8 4 12 2 -13 23
8-12 May 1987* 44 31       2 -13 23
12-14 May 1987* (P) 44 30       1 -14 23
20-21 May 1987* (P) 44 31       1 -13 24
27-28 May 1987* (P) 44 32       1 -12 23
3-4 June 1987* (P) 43 32       1 -11 24
9-10 June 1987** 44 32       2 -12 22
General election result (11 June) 43 32   2 -11 23

* Asked as, "How do you think you are going to vote in the General Election on June 11th?"
** Asked as, "Which party do you think you will vote for in the General Election on Thursday?"
(P) = Panel survey

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