Major Brexit survey finds Derbyshire Times readers back Single Market

Do we need a new EU referendum?
Do we need a new EU referendum?

A major new Brexit survey has revealed that more than half of people in the UK think we would be better off economically in Europe, a majority want to stick with the Single Market, and Remain could potentially win a second referendum.

The news could put further pressure on the Government, who already faced defeat on their plans to abandon the European Customs Union in a crucial Lords vote last week.

The survey, based on the responses of almost 216,800 readers of Johnston Press, Newsquest and Trinity Mirror websites in collaboration with Google, found 52 per cent believe Britain would be better off economically inside Europe and 56 per cent said Britain should continue to be part of the single European market.

Some 2,000 Derbyshire Times readers responded to the survey between March 29 and April 16, 30.2 per cent of whom said they were originally Leave voters, versus 29.7 per cent who voted Remain.

43.6 per cent of local responses said they believed Britain would be better off economically inside Europe, while 40.1 per cent favoured the economic prospects outside.

50.1 per cent said the UK should continue as part of the single European Market, against 32.2 per cent who favour leaving altogether - although the survey question did not specify exactly what relationship might be implied by being ‘part’ of it.

The survey results also suggest Leave voters are more likely than Remain voters to have changed their minds about how they voted, meaning Remain could potentially come out ahead if another referendum was held, however the Derbyshire Times responses found that 86.9 per cent of all voters would stick to their original vote if another ballot was held next week.

The national figure was slightly higher with 89 per cent of those surveyed saying they would still stick with how they voted.

Figures were similar for men (88 per cent) and women (89 per cent).

If the proportions of those who were still happy with their vote combined with those who would not vote in the same way as last time—assuming that they would swap from Leave to Remain and vice versa— were applied to the total number of votes from the referendum, it would suggest a narrow Remain lead of 51 per cent to 49 per cent.

However, the proportion of voters who are now not sure how they would vote was bigger than the gap between Leave and Remain, meaning the very close outcome could still go to Leave.

As might be expected, the national figures show ongoing splits between those who voted Leave and those who voted Remain in the referendum.

Among Leave voters, just nine per cent think Britain is better off economically in Europe, compared to 85 per cent of Remain voters, with 74 per cent of Leave voters saying Britain would be better off economically outside Europe.

More than a fifth of Leave voters (22 per cent) think we should continue to be part of the Single Market, as did 83 per cent of Remain voters.

The results provide further insight once broken down by age, with results suggesting the gap between young Remain supporters and older Leave supporters may be increasing.

One in eight Leave voters aged between 18 and 24 (12 per cent) said Britain would be better off economically inside Europe, while it was one in 10 among those aged 25 to 44.

In comparison, just 7 per cent of Leave voters aged 65 and over think Britain will be better off economically inside Europe, with 82 per cent saying it will be better off outside.

As well as this, three in 10 Leave voters aged 18 to 34 believe we should still be part of the Single Market, compared to just under a fifth (18 per cent) of those aged 65 and over.

Those aged under 45 who voted Leave were most likely to say they would now vote differently, at ten per cent, compared to just five per cent of Leave voters aged 65 and over, while Remain voters aged 55 and over were most likely to say they had changed their view (five per cent), compared to three per cent of Remain voters aged under 45.

The older the person, the more likely they were to stick with their voting decision, but not by much.

The survey showed 87 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds would vote the same way compared to 90 per cent of those aged over 65.

Overall, six per cent of those surveyed said they would not vote the same way, with six per cent saying they were not sure. However, Leave voters were twice as likely to say they would change their vote (eight per cent) compared to Remain voters (four per cent).

Mirroring trends in the referendum itself, those living in Scotland were most likely to say Britain would be better off economically inside Europe, at 63 per cent, including 13 per cent of Leave voters. They were also the most likely to say that Britain should stay in the Single Market, at 66 per cent, followed by those in Northern Ireland at 60 per cent, including 26 per cent and 24 per cent of Leave voters respectively.

Those in the North East, Yorkshire and the Humber and the East Midlands were the most likely to say Britain will be better off outside, at 40 per cent each, with those in Yorkshire and the Humber and in the East Midlands the most likely to say Britain should not be part of the Single Market, at 31 per cent.

Whatever they think are the best options for Britain economically, most people surveyed are not happy with the status of Brexit negotiations at the moment.

More than three-fifths of those surveyed on the site (62%) said they were not happy, with just under a fifth (18 per cent) saying they were happy, and the rest unsure.

For the Derbyshire Times, 59.2 per cent said they were unhappy with the progress of negotations, while 18.6 per cent said they were satisfied.

Those who think Britain would be better off economically inside Europe were almost twice as likely to be unhappy with negotiations (81 per cent) than those who think Britain would be better off outside (44 per cent), with a similar gap between those who think Britain should be part of the Single Market, 77 per cent, and those who don’t, 47 per cent.

Regardless of how all respondents voted in the referendum, they were more likely to be unhappy than happy with the way negotiations are going.

Among those who said they voted Leave, 46 per cent are unhappy with the status of negotiations compared to 31 per cent who were happy. More than three-quarters of those who voted Remain (76 per cent) said they were unhappy, compared to eight per cent who said they were happy.

Half of Leave voters in Scotland and Northern Ireland (50 per cent) are unhappy with the status of negotiations. Leave voters in the South West were the most likely to be happy, but even then its just a third (34 per cent).

The proportion saying they were unhappy saw a steady decrease from 67 per cent of those aged 18 to 24 to 55 per centof those aged 65 and over. Those aged over 65 were the most likely to be happy with progress, at just over a quarter (27 per cent), but only 12 per cent of those aged under 35 were happy with negotiations.

How happy people were with negotiations appears to have an impact on whether they’d change their vote - 12 per cent of Leave voters who were unhappy said they would vote differently, with 18 per cent of Remain voters who were happy with negotiations said they would change their vote.

Leave voters in Scotland (11 per cent), Northern Ireland (nine per cent) and London (nine per cent) were the most likely to say they would change their votes, while Remain voters in the North East, Yorkshire and the Humber, East Midlands, West Midlands and South West (all five per cent) were the most likely to have changed their view.

The survey also asked 8,200 readers of Johnson Press and Trinity Mirror sites in Northern Ireland about customs controls at the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, with 67 per cent saying they would not be acceptable.

Among Leave voters, 53 per cent said customs controls would be acceptable, with 34 per cent saying they would not be acceptable, while 85 per cent of Remain voters said such controls would be unacceptable.