UKIP and Greens making progress in marginals, suggests new poll

The latest batch of constituency polling, by Lord Ashcroft, suggests that the smaller parties are making progress.

On the face of it the polling suggests that the Conservatives are doing well, indeed the poll suggests that they are holding three of their seats and regaining Rochester and Stood, which Mark Reckless won from them for UKIP last year. The polls suggest they are on course to keep Bristol North West, Colne Valley and High Peak.

The poll also suggests that Labour are on course to take the Liberal Democrat seat of Bristol West.

However, whilst the polling shows good news for both of the main parties, what's interesting is in the numbers for the smaller parties.

The immediate thing that stands out is that UKIP still look on course to take Thurrock from the Conservatives. The poll gives them a four point lead, however this is down from their six point lead in the previous poll. Nonetheless, the 28 point bump in support since 2010 is impressive and even of they fail to win in 2015 it will be a key UKIP target in the following general election.

As for the Greens, the poll suggests that the party is not on course to win any of these seats, however, the data indicates that in each seat the party could be seeing an increase in its share of the vote. In Bristol West, which the party is targeting, the data suggests that Labour could take this from the Lib Dems (and with an impressive fifteen point lead, with the party on 38%). However, the poll suggests that the Greens have made significant progress on the ground as the poll puts them on 25%, twenty-one points up on their performance in the 2010 general election.

Whilst in 2015 this poll suggests the Greens have a long way to go, but it could be a good target for them in the following election.

Overall, with less than two weeks to go these polls will give a moral boost to some parties in some seats and will encourage others to work harder before the final hurdle. In such a close general election it's these marginal seats that could be crucial when it comes to forming a government in a few weeks time.

The full results of the Ashcroft polls can be accessed here.


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