Opinion polling for the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum


The referendum on EU membership took place on 23 June 2016. Opinion polling for the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum was ongoing in the months between the announcement of a referendum and the referendum polling day. Polls on the general principle of the UK's membership of the European Union were carried out for a number of years prior to the referendum. Opinion polls of voters in general tended to show roughly equal proportions in favour of remaining and leaving. Polls of business leaders, scientists, and lawyers showed majorities in favour of remaining. Among non-British citizens in other EU member states, polling suggested that a majority were in favour of the UK remaining in the EU in principle, but that a similarly sized majority believed that if the UK were only able to remain in the EU on renegotiated terms then it should leave.

Opinion polling on the referendum from 2013 to the date the referendum was held, showing "remain" in green, "leave" in red, and "undecided" in blue (as of 23 June 2016)
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Analysis

Demographics

Younger voters tended to support remaining in the EU (but are generally less likely to vote[1]) whereas older people tended to support leaving. There was no significant difference in attitudes between the genders. According to two out of three pollsters, managerial, professional and administrative workers were most likely to favour staying in the EU, while semi-skilled and unskilled workers, plus those reliant on benefits, were the largest demographic supporting leave. University graduates are generally more likely to vote remain compared to those with no qualifications.[2] White voters were evenly split, and all ethnic minority groups leant towards backing Remain, but registration is lower and turnout can be up to 25% lower in this demographic.[3] Support for remaining in the EU was known to be significantly higher in Scotland than it is in the United Kingdom as a whole.[4]

Polling methods

The way voters are polled is known to affect the outcome. Telephone polls have consistently found more support for remaining in the EU than online polls.[5] YouGov, which uses online polling, has criticised telephone polls because they "have too high a percentage of graduates", skewing the results.[6] Ipsos MORI and ComRes, and Peter Kellner, the former president of YouGov, have said telephone polls are more reliable.[7][8][9] ICM has said "as good a guess as any is that the right answer lies somewhere in between".[10] A joint study by Populus and Number Cruncher Politics in March 2016 concluded that telephone polls were likely to better reflect the state of public opinion on the issue.[11]

The results of the Referendum, as with the results of the 2015 General Election, show that there is still a problem with the polling methodology. Overall, however, online polls seem to have had a better performance than phone polls. Online surveys, on average, predicted a "leave" win with a 1.2% margin, whereas those with a phone methodology had "remain" win with a 2.6% margin.[12] All in all, 63% of online polls predicted a Leave victory, while 78% of phone polls predicted that Remain would win.[13] Kantar TNS and Opinium, both pollsters with online methodologies, were the two groups that forecast a Leave victory just ahead of the vote.[13]

Polls of polls

Several different groups have calculated polls of polls, which collect and average the results of opinion polls across different companies. They have different methodologies; for example, some give more weight to recent polls than others, some deal with undecided voters differently, and some attempt to adjust for the consistent gap between telephone and online polling. As a result, the polls of polls give a spread of results.

Conducted by Date Remain Leave Undecided Lead Notes
What UK Thinks: EU[14] 23 June 52% 48% N/A 4% Six most recent polls.
Elections Etc.[15] 23 June 50.6% 49.4% N/A 1.2% Twelve most recent polls. Telephone polls are adjusted in favour of Leave and online polls in favour of Remain.
HuffPost Pollster[16] 23 June 45.8% 45.3% 9% 0.5%
Number Cruncher Politics[17] 22 June 46% 44% 10% 2% Equal weighting to phone and online polls.
Financial Times[18] 13 June 48% 46% 6% 2% Five most recent polls.[19]
The Telegraph[20] 21 June 51% 49% N/A 2% Six most recent polls.
The Economist[21] 6 June 44% 44% 9% 0% Excludes polls with fewer than 900 participants.

Standard polling on EU membership

The tables show polling on whether the UK should be in or out of the EU. Polling generally weights the sample to be nationally representative. Polls were usually conducted within Great Britain, with Northern Ireland and Gibraltar normally omitted from the sample.[22] This has historically been the case in British opinion polling because Northern Ireland has a different set of political parties from the rest of the UK, reflecting the political divide between unionism and nationalism or republicanism.[22] Similarly, Gibraltar was not included in standard polls because it has its own local legislature and does not take part in British parliamentary elections, although Gibraltar does take part in elections to the European Parliament and took part in the referendum.

Most of the polls shown here were carried out by members of the British Polling Council (BPC) who fully disclose their findings, methodology and the client who commissioned the poll.[23] As non-members, Qriously, Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, Pew Research Center and Lord Ashcroft Polls are not bound by the standards of the BPC,[24] and their polls should be treated with caution.[25]

The percentages who "would not vote" or who refused to answer are not shown below, although some pollsters have excluded these in any case.

2016

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Lead Sample Conducted by Polling type Notes
23 June 2016 48.1% 51.9% N/A 3.8% 33,577,342 Results of the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum UK-wide referendum
23 June 52% 48% N/A 4% 4,772 YouGov Online On the day poll
22 June 55% 45% N/A 10% 4,700 Populus Online
20–22 June 51% 49% N/A 2% 3,766 YouGov Online Includes Northern Ireland (turnout weighted)
20–22 June 49% 46% 1% 3% 1,592 Ipsos MORI Telephone
20–22 June 44% 45% 9% 1% 3,011 Opinium Online
17–22 June 54% 46% N/A 8% 1,032 ComRes Telephone Those expressing a voting intention (turnout weighted)
48% 42% 11% 6% All UK adults (turnout weighted)
16–22 June 41% 43% 16% 2% 2,320 TNS Online
20 June 45% 44% 11% 1% 1,003 Survation/IG Group Telephone
18–19 June 42% 44% 13% 2% 1,652 YouGov Online
16–19 June 53% 46% 2% 7% 800 ORB/Telegraph Telephone Definite voters only
17–18 June 45% 42% 13% 3% 1,004 Survation Telephone
16–17 June 44% 43% 9% 1% 1,694 YouGov Online
14–17 June 44% 44% 12% N/A 2,006 Opinium Online Most fieldwork conducted before the murder of Jo Cox.
16 June All official campaigning suspended until 19 June after the fatal shooting of Jo Cox MP.[26]
15–16 June 42% 44% 9% 2% 1,734 YouGov Online
15 June 42% 45% 13% 3% 1,104 Survation Telephone
10–15 June 37%47% 16%10%1,468 BMG ResearchOnline
10–15 June46%43%11%3%1,064BMG ResearchTelephone
11–14 June 43% 49% 3% 6% 1,257 Ipsos MORI Telephone
12–13 June 39% 46% 15% 7% 1,905 YouGov Online
10–13 June45%50%5%5%1,000ICMTelephoneFinal ICM polls.[27] Only include those "definite" to vote. Paired telephone/online polls by otherwise identical methodology
44%49%7%5%2,001Online
9–13 June 46% 45% 9% 1% 1,002 ComRes Telephone
7–13 June40%47%13%7%2,497TNSOnline
9–12 June48%49%3%1%800ORBTelephoneMeasures only those "definite" to vote
16 May–12 June53%47%N/A6%N/ANATCENOnline/TelephonePrimarily online, those who failed to respond were followed up by phone
9–10 June42%43%11%1%1,671YouGovOnline
7–10 June44%42%13%2%2,009OpiniumOnline
8–9 June45%55%N/A10%2,052ORBOnlineWeighted according to "definite" voters
5–6 June43%42%11%1%2,001YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
3–5 June43%48%9%5%2,047ICMOnline
2–5 June48%47%5%1%800ORBTelephoneWeighted according to "definite" to vote
1–3 June41%45%11%4%3,405YouGovOnline
31 May–3 June43%41%16%2%2,007OpiniumOnlineWeighted by new methodology[28]
40%43%16%3%Weighted by previous methodology[29]
30–31 May41%41%13%N/A1,735YouGovOnline
27–29 May42%45%15%3%1,004ICMTelephonePaired telephone/online polls by otherwise identical methodology
44%47%9%3%2,052Online
25–29 May51%46%3%5%800ORBTelephone
20–25 May44%45%12%1%1,638BMG ResearchOnline
24 May44%38%18%6%1,013SurvationTelephone
23–24 May41%41%13%N/A1,756YouGovOnline
19–23 May41%43%16%2%1,213TNSOnline
20–22 May45%45%10%N/A2,003ICMOnline
18–22 May55%42%3%13%800ORBTelephonePoll was said to reflect the private polling conducted for the government[30]
17–19 May44%40%14%4%2,008OpiniumOnline
16–17 May44%40%12%4%1,648YouGovOnline
14–17 May52%41%7%11%1,000ComResTelephone
14–16 May55%37%5%18%1,002Ipsos MORITelephone
13–15 May47%39%14%8%1,002ICMTelephonePaired telephone/online polls by otherwise identical methodology
43%47%10%4%2,048Online
11–15 May55%40%5%15%800ORBTelephone
10–12 May38%41%21%3%1,222TNSOnline
29 Apr–12 May36%39%22%3%996YouGovTelephone
29 Apr–12 May38%40%16%2%1,973YouGovOnline
6–8 May44%46%11%2%2,005ICMOnline
4–6 May42%40%13%2%3,378YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
29 Apr–3 May44%45%11%1%2,040ICMOnline
27–29 Apr43%46%11%3%2,029ICMOnline
26–29 Apr42%41%14%1%2,005OpiniumOnline24% of respondents preferred not to say; the stated percentages are of the other 76%
27–29 Apr49%51%N/A2%2,000ORBOnline
26–28 Apr39%36%26%3%1,221TNSOnline
25–26 Apr41%42%13%1%1,650YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
25–26 Apr45%38%17%7%1,003SurvationTelephone
22–26 Apr43%45%13%2%2,001BMG ResearchOnline
22–24 Apr44%46%10%2%2,001ICMOnline
20–24 Apr51%43%6%8%800ORBTelephone
16–19 Apr51%40%9%9%1,002ComResTelephone
16–18 Apr49%39%8%10%1,026Ipsos MORITelephone
15–17 Apr48%41%11%7%1,003ICMTelephonePaired telephone/online polls by otherwise identical methodology
43%44%13%1%2,008Online
13–17 Apr53%41%6%12%800ORBTelephone
15 AprilThe EU referendum campaign officially begins.[31]
12–14 Apr38%34%28%4%1,198TNSOnline
12–14 Apr40%39%16%1%3,371YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
11–12 Apr39%39%17%N/A1,693YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
7–11 Apr35%35%30%N/A1,198TNSOnline
8–10 Apr45%38%17%7%1,002ComResTelephone
8–10 Apr42%45%12%3%2,030ICMOnline
7 April HM Government starts sending a pro-Remain pamphlet to 27 million UK households and begins a pro-Remain digital advertising campaign.[32][33]
6–7 Apr40%38%16%2%1,612YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
29 Mar–4 Apr39%38%18%1%3,754YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
1–3 Apr44%43%13%1%2,007ICMOnline
29 Mar–3 Apr51%44%5%7%800ORBTelephone
29 Mar–1 Apr39%43%18%4%1,966OpiniumOnline
24–29 Mar35%35%30%N/A1,193TNSOnline
24–29 Mar41%45%14%4%1,518BMG ResearchOnlineIncludes Northern Ireland
24–28 Mar51%49%N/A2%2,002ORBOnline
22–24 Mar45%43%12%2%1,970ICMOnlineOriginal poll is no longer available on ICM Unlimted
19–22 Mar49%41%10%8%1,023Ipsos MORITelephone
17–22 Mar40%37%19%3%1,688YouGovOnlineRemainder "won't vote"
18–20 Mar48%41%11%7%1,002ComResTelephone
18–20 Mar41%43%17%2%2,000ICMOnline
17–19 Mar46%35%19%11%1,006SurvationTelephoneIncludes Northern Ireland
11–14 Mar47%49%4%2%823ORBTelephone
11–13 Mar43%41%16%2%2,031ICMOnline
4–11 Mar45%40%16%5%2,282Greenberg Quinlan Rosner ResearchOnline
2–10 Mar48%45%7%3%4,047Populus/Number Cruncher PoliticsOnline
4–6 Mar49%35%15%14%966Populus/Number Cruncher PoliticsTelephone
4–6 Mar40%41%19%1%2,051ICMOnline
2–3 Mar40%37%18%3%1,695YouGovOnline
1–2 Mar40%35%19%5%1,705YouGovOnline
29 Feb–1 Mar39%37%19%2%2,233YouGovOnline
26–29 Feb41%41%18%N/A2,003ICMOnline
26–28 Feb39%45%18%6%2,071Populus/Number Cruncher PoliticsOnline
26–28 Feb48%37%15%11%1,002Populus/Number Cruncher PoliticsTelephone
24–25 Feb48%52%N/A4%2,014ORBOnline
21–23 Feb37%38%25%1%3,482YouGovOnline
20 Feb David Cameron announces the date of UK's In/Out EU referendum after an EU summit in Brussels.[34]
17–23 Feb38%36%25%2%1,517BMG ResearchOnlineIncludes Northern Ireland
19–22 Feb42%40%17%2%2,021ICMOnline
19–22 Feb51%39%10%12%1,000ComResTelephone
13–20 Feb45%32%23%13%938SurvationTelephone
18–19 Feb40%41%19%1%1,033OpiniumOnlineConducted before the conclusion of the negotiations; exact time frame was not communicated
13–16 Feb54%36%10%18%497Ipsos MORITelephone
11–15 Feb36%39%25%3%1,079TNSOnline
12–14 Feb43%39%18%4%2,001ICMOnlineOriginal poll is no longer available on ICM Unlimted
11–14 Feb49%41%10%8%1,105ComResTelephone
5–7 Feb41%42%17%1%2,018ICMOnline
3–4 Feb36%45%19%9%1,675YouGov/The TimesOnline
29–31 Jan42%39%19%3%2,002ICMOnline
27–28 Jan38%42%20%4%1,735YouGovOnline
23–25 Jan55%36%9%19%513Ipsos MORITelephone
21–25 Jan44%42%14%2%1,511BMG ResearchOnlineIncludes Northern Ireland
22–24 Jan54%36%10%18%1,006ComResTelephone
22–24 Jan41%41%18%N/A2,010ICMOnline
20–21 Jan52%48%N/A4%2,015ORBOnline
15–17 Jan42%40%17%2%2,023ICMOnline
15–16 Jan38%40%22%2%1,017SurvationOnlineIncludes Northern Ireland
8–14 Jan42%45%12%3%2,087PanelbaseOnline
8–10 Jan44%38%18%6%2,055ICMOnline

2015

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
17–18 Dec41%42%17%1,598YouGov
12–14 Dec58%32%10%529Ipsos MORI
11–13 Dec56%35%8%1,001ComRes
11–13 Dec42%41%17%2,053ICM
4–6 Dec43%39%17%2,022ICM
2–3 Dec36%43%21%1,001ORB
30 Nov–3 Dec40%42%18%10,015SurvationIncludes Northern Ireland
20–24 Nov41%41%18%4,317YouGov
19–24 Nov40%38%22%1,699YouGov
20–22 Nov45%38%17%2,002ICM
17–19 Nov48%52%N/A2,067ORB
16–17 Nov43%40%18%1,546SurvationIncludes Northern Ireland
11–17 Nov39%39%22%1,528BMG ResearchIncludes Northern Ireland
13–15 Nov43%38%19%2,000ICM
9–11 Nov38%41%21%2,007SurvationIncludes Northern Ireland
6–8 Nov46%38%16%2,024ICM
30 Oct–1 Nov44%38%18%2,060ICM
28–29 Oct39%41%19%1,664YouGov
22–27 Oct40%40%20%1,738YouGov
23–25 Oct45%38%17%2,049ICM
23–25 Oct53%47%N/A2,015ORB
22–23 Oct42%39%16%1,625YouGov
19–20 Oct42%40%17%1,690YouGov
17–19 Oct52%36%12%498Ipsos MORI
14–19 Oct42%39%19%2,372GQRR
16–18 Oct44%38%18%2,023ICM
7 Oct44%39%17%1,947ICM
25–28 Sep55%36%8%1,009ComRes
25–27 Sep45%38%17%2,005ICM
17–22 Sep38%41%21%2,781YouGov
10–17 Sep38%40%22%11,171YouGov
11–13 Sep43%40%17%2,006ICM
12 SepJeremy Corbyn is elected leader of the Labour Party
3–4 Sep40%40%20%1,004Survation
18–19 Aug44%37%20%1,676YouGov
13–17 Aug50%40%10%3,402YouGov
23–29 Jul45%37%19%1,708YouGov
16 JulTim Farron is elected leader of the Liberal Democrats
29 Jun–6 Jul45%37%18%5,008SurvationIncludes Northern Ireland
19–24 Jun44%38%18%1,653YouGov
19–21 Jun55%45%N/A2,000ORB
14–16 Jun66%22%12%501Ipsos MORI
8–11 Jun43%36%21%2,381YouGov
1–2 Jun44%34%21%1,063YouGov
27 May–2 Jun42%35%22%2,956YouGov
29–31 May58%31%11%500ComRes
28–31 May47%33%20%680ICM
21–22 May44%36%20%1,532YouGov
8–15 May47%40%13%3,977Survation
7 Apr–13 May55%36%9%999Pew Research Center
8–9 May45%36%19%1,302YouGov
8–9 May45%38%18%1,027Survation
7 May2015 United Kingdom general election
3–5 May56%34%10%1,011ComRes
3–4 May45%33%21%1,664YouGov
28–29 Apr52%32%16%1,823YouGov
23–28 Apr47%33%20%1,834YouGov
19–20 Apr45%35%20%2,078YouGov
10–12 Apr40%39%21%2,036Populus
8–9 Apr45%41%15%1,750Opinium
26–30 Mar35%34%31%1,197TNS-BMRB
24–26 Mar49%44%7%1,007PanelbaseIncludes Northern Ireland
18–25 Mar41%38%21%2,006YouGov
22–23 Mar46%36%18%1,641YouGov
18–23 Mar42%34%23%8,271YouGov
23–24 Feb45%37%18%1,520YouGov
22–23 Feb45%35%20%1,772YouGov
17–20 Feb41%44%15%1,975Opinium
25–26 Jan43%37%20%1,656YouGov
18–19 Jan43%38%18%1,747YouGov
15–19 Jan38%34%28%1,188TNS-BMRB
6–8 Jan37%40%23%1,201TNS-BMRB

2014

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
14–15 Dec40%39%21%1,648YouGov
30 Nov–1 Dec42%39%20%1,763YouGov
20–26 Nov38%43%19%1,641YouGov
21–23 Nov32%48%20%2,049ComRes
20–21 Nov40%41%19%1,970YouGov
19–21 Nov40%41%19%2,314YouGov
16–17 Nov39%39%21%1,589YouGov
7 Nov31%54%15%1,020Survation
2–3 Nov38%41%21%1,652YouGov
31 Oct–2 Nov35%49%17%2,012Survation
30–31 Oct37%43%20%1,808YouGov
27–28 Oct35%44%21%2,052YouGov
23–24 Oct41%40%19%2,069YouGov
19–20 Oct40%39%21%1,727YouGov
11–14 Oct56%36%8%1,002Ipsos MORI
21–22 Sep42%38%19%1,671YouGov
18 Sep2014 Scottish independence referendum
25–26 Aug41%40%19%2,021YouGov
10–11 Aug40%38%22%1,676YouGov
13–14 Jul41%38%21%1,745YouGov
29–30 Jun40%39%21%1,729YouGov
27–29 Jun36%43%21%2,049ComRes
27–28 Jun39%47%14%1,000Survation
26–27 Jun39%37%24%1,936YouGov
19–20 Jun39%39%21%2,016YouGov
17–19 Jun37%48%15%1,946Opinium
15–16 Jun44%36%20%1,696YouGov
30 May–1 Jun40%42%18%2,062ComRes
29–30 May41%39%20%2,090YouGov
22 MayEuropean Parliament election, 2014
20–21 May42%37%21%6,124YouGov
18–19 May43%37%20%1,740YouGov
10–12 May54%37%10%1,003Ipsos MORI
28 Apr–6 May39%38%23%1,805YouGov
2–3 May39%46%15%1,005Survation
24–28 Apr41%49%10%1,199TNS-BMRB
24–25 Apr40%37%23%1,835YouGov
21–22 Apr40%38%23%2,190YouGov
3–4 Apr42%37%21%1,998YouGov
27–28 Mar42%36%21%1,916YouGov
23–24 Mar42%36%22%1,558YouGov
9–10 Mar41%39%20%3,195YouGov
9–10 Feb36%39%25%1,685YouGov
7–20 Jan41%41%18%20,058Lord Ashcroft Polls
12–13 Jan33%43%24%1,762YouGov

2013

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
1–9 Dec37%43%20%UnknownYouGov
10–11 Nov39%39%22%UnknownYouGov[35]
13–14 Oct42%37%20%UnknownYouGov[35]
23–27 Sep36%44%20%1,922YouGov
15–16 Sep42%39%20%UnknownYouGov[35]
18–19 Aug46%34%20%UnknownYouGov[35]
6–8 Aug32%53%15%1,945Opinium
4–5 Aug43%35%22%UnknownYouGov[35]
18–24 Jul35%45%21%1,968YouGov
22–23 Jul45%35%21%UnknownYouGov[35]
7–8 Jul43%36%21%UnknownYouGov[35]
4–5 Jul36%46%19%1,022YouGov
23–24 Jun45%31%24%UnknownYouGov[35]
9–10 Jun43%35%22%UnknownYouGov[35]
1–3 Jun44%45%11%1,566Survation
28–29 May43%35%22%UnknownYouGov[35]
21–28 May41%38%20%1,512YouGov
17–18 May36%50%14%1,000Survation
16–17 May36%45%19%1,809YouGov
15–16 May24%46%30%2,017ComRes/Sunday Mirror/Independent[permanent dead link]Northern Ireland not sampled
15–16 May30%46%24%2,017ICM/The Telegraph
12–13 May34%44%22%1,748YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
10–12 May40%43%17%1,001ICM/The Guardian
9–10 May30%47%23%1,945YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
7 May35%46%20%719YouGov/The TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
7–8 April36%43%21%1,765YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
4–27 March46%46%8%1,012Pew Research CenterIncludes Northern Ireland
17–18 February38%41%21%1,713YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
5 February30%41%22%1,237TNS BMRB
29 Jan – 6 Feb33%50%17%2,114Financial Times/Harris
25 January36%50%16%1,005Survation/Mail on Sunday[permanent dead link]Northern Ireland not sampled
24–25 January37%39%24%1,943YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
23 JanuaryDavid Cameron announces there will be a British In/Out EU referendum before 2018.[36]
23 January37%40%23%2,000Populus/The Times
20–21 January37%40%24%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
17–18 January40%34%6%1,912YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
10–11 January36%42%21%1,995YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
6 January36%54%10%1,002Survation/Mail on SundayNorthern Ireland not sampled
2–3 January31%46%22%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled

2012

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
27–28 November30%51%9%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
13–15 November30%56%14%1,957Opinium/ObserverNorthern Ireland not sampled

2011

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
15–16 December41%41%19%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
8–9 December35%44%20%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
7–8 August30%52%19%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled

2010

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Conducted by Notes
8–9 September33%47%19%UnknownYouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled

Sub-national polling

England

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201646.6%53.4%N/AEngland Results
9–16 September 201540%43%17%1,712YouGov

England and Wales

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201646.7%53.3%N/AResults
26 June – 3 July 201542%43%15%956Panelbase/Sunday Times

London

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201659.9%40.1%N/ALondon Results
2–6 June 201648%35%13%1,179YouGov
26 April – 1 May 201651%34%14%1,005Opinium/Evening Standard
4–6 January 201639%34%27%1,156YouGov/LBC
17–19 November 201445%37%14%1,124YouGov/Evening Standard
20–25 June 201341%39%20%1,269YouGov/Evening Standard

Scotland

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201662.0%38.0%N/AScotland Results
6–12 Jun 201658%33%8%1,000Ipsos Mori/STV
4–22 May 201653%24%23%1,008TNS[permanent dead link]
6–10 May 201654%32%14%1,000ICM/The Scotsman
1–2 May 201658%19%19%1,024Survation/Daily Record
23–28 April 201657%33%11%1,074Panelbase/Sunday Times
18–25 April 201666%29%5%1,015Ipsos MORI/STV
1–24 April 201648%21%31%1,012TNS
15–20 April 201654%28%17%1,005Survation/Daily Record
11–15 April 201655%35%9%1,013BMG Research/Herald
6–15 April 201655%33%12%1,021Panelbase/Sunday Times
2–22 March 201651%19%29%1,051TNS
10–17 March 201653%29%17%1,051Survation/Daily Record
7–9 March 201648%31%21%1,070YouGov
11–16 February 201652%27%21%951Survation
1–7 February 201662%26%12%1,000Ipsos MORI
1–4 February 201655%28%18%1,022YouGov/The Times
6–25 January 201644%21%29%1,016TNS
8–14 January 201654%30%16%1,053Panelbase/Sunday Times
8–12 January 201652%27%21%1,029Survation/Daily Record
9–16 November 201565%22%13%1,029Ipsos MORI
9–13 October 201551%31%17%1,026YouGov/Times
9–30 September 201547%18%29%1,037TNS
22–27 September 201555%30%15%1,004YouGov
7–10 September 201551%29%20%975Survation/Scottish Daily Mail
26 June – 3 July 201555%29%16%1,002Panelbase/Sunday Times
3–7 July 201551%26%23%1,045Survation/Scottish Daily Mail
13–30 May 201549%19%26%1,031TNS BMRB
19–21 May 201554%25%21%1,001YouGov/Sunday Post
29 January – 2 February 201552%29%17%1,001YouGov/The Times
9–14 January 201542%37%21%1,007Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland
6–13 November 201447%35%18%1,001Survation/Daily Record
30 October − 5 November 201441%38%19%1,000Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland
4–9 February 201354%33%13%1,003Ipsos MORI/The Times

Wales

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201647.5%52.5%N/AWales Results
30 May – 2 June 201641%41%18%1,017YouGov
7–11 April 201638%39%16%1,011YouGov
9–11 February 201637%45%18%1,024YouGov
21–24 September 201542%38%21%1,010YouGov
4–6 May 201547%33%16%1,202YouGov/ITV Wales
24–27 March 201544%38%14%1,189YouGov/ITV Wales
5–9 March 201543%36%17%1,279YouGov/ITV Wales
19–26 February 201563%33%4%1,000ICM/BBC
19–21 January 201544%36%16%1,036YouGov/ITV Wales
2–5 December 201442%39%15%1,131YouGov/ITV Wales
8–11 September 201443%37%15%1,025YouGov/ITV Wales
26 June – 1 July 201441%36%18%1,035YouGov/ITV Wales
21–24 February 201454%40%6%1,000ICM/BBC
14–25 June 201329%37%35%1,015Beaufort Research

Northern Ireland

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by Notes
23 June 201655.8%44.2%N/ANorthern Ireland Results
Late June 201637%26%NAOver 1,000Belfast Telegraph / IPSOS MORI
20 June 201657%43%Exc. DKs2,090The NI Sun/LucidTalk
17–19 May 201657%35%9%1,090LucidTalk
May 201644%20%35%1,005Ipsos MORIQuestion phrased differently.
19–21 October 201556.5%28.3%15.2%2,517LucidTalk
2–16 October 201555%13%32%1,012BBC/RTÉ

Gibraltar

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by
23 June 201695.9%4.1%N/AGibraltar Results
13–15 May 201694%2%4%596Gibraltar Chronicle
11–15 April 201688%8%3%596Gibraltar Chronicle

Renegotiated terms

The UK government renegotiated certain terms of the UK's membership of the European Union before the referendum was held.[37] Prior to the renegotiation in February 2016, some opinion polls asked the referendum question on the assumption that the UK government would say that it was satisfied with the outcome of the renegotiation.[38]

Date(s) conducted Remain Leave Undecided Sample Held by Notes
1–2 June 201555%24%18%1,063YouGov/ProspectNorthern Ireland not sampled
8–9 May 201558%24%16%1,302YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
3–4 May 201556%20%20%1,664YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
19–20 April 201557%22%17%2,078YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
22–23 March 201557%22%18%1,641YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
22–23 February 201557%21%17%1,772YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
25–26 January 201554%25%16%1,656YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
18–19 January 201557%21%19%1,747YouGov/British InfluenceNorthern Ireland not sampled
14–15 Dec 201455%24%16%1,648YouGov/The Sun
30 Nov – 1 December 201455%25%17%1,763YouGov/The Sun
17–19 November 201458%25%13%1,124YouGov / The Evening Standard
16–17 November 201458%24%14%1,589YouGov / The Sun
4–7 November 201440%43%17%1,707Opinium/The Observer
2–3 November 201452%27%15%1,652YouGov / The Sun
19–20 October 201455%24%17%1,727YouGov / The Sun
21–22 September 201454%25%16%1,671YouGov / The Sun
25–26 August 201454%26%16%2,021YouGov / The Sun
10–11 August 201454%23%18%1,676YouGov / The Sun
13–14 July 201452%25%19%1,745YouGov / The Sun
29–30 June 201454%23%17%1,729YouGov / The Sun
15–16 June 201457%22%16%1,696YouGov / The Sun
18–19 May 201453%24%18%1,740YouGovNorthern Ireland not sampled
24–25 April 201450%26%18%1,835YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
21–22 April 201452%26%18%2,190YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
23–24 March 201454%25%17%2,190YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
9–10 March 201452%27%16%3,195YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
9–10 February 201447%27%18%1,685YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
12–13 January 201448%29%18%1,762YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
12–13 May 201345%33%19%1,748YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
9–10 May 201345%32%20%1,945YouGov/Sunday TimesNorthern Ireland not sampled
7–8 April 201346%31%17%1,765YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled
17–18 February 201352%28%14%1,713YouGov/The SunNorthern Ireland not sampled

Polling within professional groups

Business leaders

The British Chambers of Commerce surveyed 2,200 business leaders in January and February 2016. Of these, 60% supported remaining in the EU and 30% supported exit. In a further poll published in May, these numbers had changed to 54% and 37%, respectively.[39][40]

The Confederation of British Industry reported a survey of 773 of its members, carried out by ComRes. With numbers adjusted to reflect CBI membership, the poll indicated that 80% of CBI members saw a "remain" outcome as the best outcome for their business, with 5% seeing "leave" as the best outcome.[41][42][43]

In a poll of 350 board directors of UK businesses, published in June 2015, 82% agreed with the statement that "the UK's membership of the EU is good for British businesses", while 12% disagreed.[44][45] In a follow-up poll reported in March 2016, 63% agreed that "British businesses are better off inside the European Union than out of it" while 20% disagreed.[45][46] To the statement, "An EU exit risks stifling British business growth," 59% agreed and 30% disagreed. To the statement, "Our membership of the EU gives British businesses invaluable access to European markets," 71% agreed and 16% disagreed. Thirty-five per cent agreed that "An EU exit would leave British businesses facing a skills shortage" while 50% disagreed.[46]

The manufacturers' organisation EEF used the market research organisation GfK to conduct a survey in late 2015 of 500 senior decision-makers in manufacturing organisations. Of these, 63% wanted the UK to stay in the EU, and 5% wanted it to leave. Three percent said there was no advantage to their businesses for the UK to be in the EU, against 50% who said it was important and a further 20% who said it was critical for their business.[47][48]

Two surveys by consultants Deloitte asked 120 Chief Financial Officers of large UK companies "whether it is in the interests of UK businesses for the UK to remain a member of the EU." In the first survey, conducted in the final quarter of 2015, 62% agreed while 6% disagreed. A further 28% said they would withhold their judgement until the renegotiation in February 2016. The second survey, conducted in early 2016, had 75% saying it was in the interest of UK businesses to remain, with 8% saying it was not.[49][50]

In April 2016, the International Chamber of Commerce published a survey of 226 businesses from 27 different countries. Of these international businesses, 46% said they would reduce investment in the UK if it left the EU, while 1% said Brexit would increase their investment in the UK. As to whether the UK should leave the EU, 8% thought it should, while 86% wanted the UK to remain.[51][52][53]

In May 2016, law firm King & Wood Mallesons published a survey of 300 businesses, equally split between France, Spain, Italy, and Germany. Asked about the prospect of the UK leaving the EU, 68% said it would adversely affect their businesses and 62% said they would be less likely to do business in the UK. When asked to name ways in which their businesses could benefit from Brexit, a majority of respondents in France, Italy, and Spain said that their countries could benefit as companies move jobs out of the UK.[54][55]

Scientists

In March 2016, Nature reported a survey of 907 active science researchers based in the UK. Of these, 78% said exit from the EU would be "somewhat harmful" or "very harmful" for UK science, with 9% saying it would be "somewhat beneficial" or "very beneficial". Asked, "Should the UK exit the EU or remain?" 83% chose "remain" and 12% "exit".[56] The journal also surveyed a further 954 scientists based in the EU but outside the UK. Of these, 47% said the UK's exit would be "harmful" or "very harmful" for science in the EU, with 11.5% choosing "beneficial" or "very beneficial".[56]

Lawyers

Legal Week surveyed almost 350 partners in legal firms. Of these, 77% said that a UK exit from the EU would have a "negative" or "very negative" effect on the City's position in global financial markets, with 6.2% predicting a "positive" effect. Asked about the effect on their own firms, 59% of the partners predicted a "quite adverse" or "very adverse" effect, while 13% said the effect would be "quite positive" or "very positive".[57]

Economists

The Financial Times surveyed 105 economists about how an exit from the EU would affect their views of the UK's prospects, publishing the results in January 2016. In the medium term, 76 respondents (72%) said the UK's prospects would be worse, 8 (7.6%) said they would be better, and 18 (17%) predicted no difference.[58]

Ipsos MORI surveyed members of the Royal Economic Society and the Society of Business Economists for The Observer, with 639 responses. Over the next five years, 88% said that Brexit would have a negative effect on GDP, 7% said it would have no impact, and 3% said there would it would have a positive impact, while 82% said it would have a negative effect on household incomes, 9% said it would have no impact, and 7% said it would have a positive effect. Over ten to twenty years, 72% said it would have a negative effect on GDP, 11% said it would have no impact and 11% said it would have a positive effect, while 73% said it would have a negative effect on household income, 13% said it would have no impact, and 10% said it would have a positive effect.[59][60]

Other opinion polling

In a poll released in December 2015, Lord Ashcroft asked 20,000 people in the UK to place themselves on a scale of 0–100 of how likely they were vote to remain or leave. A total of 47% placed themselves in the "leave" end of the scale, 38% in the "remain" end and 14% were completely undecided.[61][62]

On British withdrawal

  •  France – A poll conducted by French daily newspaper Le Parisien in January 2013 found that 52% of French voters were in favour of the UK withdrawing from the EU.[63] Of the 1,136 people polled, in conjunction with French research agency BVA in January 2013, 48% said they would rather the UK remained inside the EU.[64]
  •  Germany – A study carried out by Internationale Politik in January 2013 found 64% of Germans favoured the UK remaining inside the EU – with 36% saying they favoured an exit. The biggest support for retaining the union with the UK was with the younger generation with 69% of 18- to 25-year-olds saying they wanted the UK to stay. Amongst the German political parties, the supporters of the Green Party remained most favourable at 85%.[65]
Ashcroft polling

In early 2016, Lord Ashcroft polled individuals in each of the other European Union member states to gauge opinion on whether they thought the United Kingdom should leave the EU, whether they thought the UK should remain a member or whether they believed it did not matter. All member states said that they wanted the UK to remain a member, except Cyprus, the Czech Republic and Slovenia, with Lithuania being most in favour, at 78% voting for the UK to remain in the EU.[66]

Country Remain Does not matter Leave
 Austria41%41%19%
 Belgium49%38%13%
 Bulgaria67%27%7%
 Croatia49%41%10%
 Cyprus35%45%19%
 Czech Republic40%47%13%
 Denmark56%31%13%
 Estonia65%28%8%
 Finland50%39%11%
 France50%32%18%
 Germany59%30%11%
 Greece50%35%15%
 Hungary64%30%7%
 Ireland72%18%10%
 Italy67%24%9%
 Latvia58%33%9%
 Lithuania78%16%6%
 Luxembourg55%21%24%
 Malta76%18%6%
 Netherlands49%42%10%
 Poland67%27%6%
 Portugal74%20%7%
 Romania70%26%4%
 Slovakia61%32%7%
 Slovenia43%49%8%
 Spain70%24%6%
 Sweden56%33%12%
 EU2760%30%10%

Additionally, Ashcroft asked the same group of people whether they would be happy for the UK to remain in the European Union to renegotiated terms or whether they thought the UK should leave if they do not like their current terms of membership. Newer countries to the European Union, countries which have joined the Union since 2004, were the biggest supporters: 52% supported the renegotiated position, compared to just 40% of respondents from EU members who joined before 2004.[66]

Country Remain Leave
 Austria24%76%
 Belgium34%66%
 Bulgaria52%48%
 Croatia36%64%
 Cyprus33%67%
 Czech Republic42%58%
 Denmark51%49%
 Estonia44%56%
 Finland30%70%
 France36%64%
 Germany35%65%
 Greece39%61%
 Hungary61%39%
 Ireland54%46%
 Italy50%50%
 Latvia49%51%
 Lithuania64%36%
 Luxembourg26%74%
 Malta69%31%
 Netherlands37%63%
 Poland52%48%
 Portugal61%39%
 Romania59%41%
 Slovakia47%53%
 Slovenia29%71%
 Spain43%57%
 Sweden37%63%
 EU2743%57%
ICM polling

An ICM online poll of 1,000 adults in each of nine European countries (including Norway, not an EU member state) in November 2015 found an average of 53% in favour of the UK's remaining in the EU.[67]

Country Remain Leave
 Denmark46%24%
 Finland49%19%
 France51%22%
 Germany55%19%
 Italy63%20%
 Norway34%27%
 Portugal74%8%
 Spain69%11%
 Sweden43%26%

Post-referendum polling

See also

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