Ben Gummer nudges ahead of David Ellesmere in Ipswich's election battle
PUBLISHED: 12:33 30 April 2015 | UPDATED: 12:33 30 April 2015
With a week to go until the general election, the battle for Ipswich is as tight as ever - but Conservative Ben Gummer has his nose in front according to our new survey.
We contacted more than 200 people from across the constituency on Monday and Tuesday of this week to find out their voting intentions.
While the survey is not a scientific opinion poll, it is a method of finding out public opinion that we have used in the past – and has proved an accurate indication of voting trends.
Of those who said they had made up their mind about how to vote in the general election, 39.2% said they would vote for Conservative Ben Gummer, 34.6% for Labour’s David Ellesmere, 14.6% for UKIP’s Maria Vigneau, 10.8% for Barry Broom from the Greens and just 0.8% for the Liberal Democrats’ Chika Akinwale.
The closeness of the result, and the fact that 16% of people we interviewed said they were still undecided, shows that the result is still too close to call – but the projected result does differ considerably from other surveys.
Lord Ashcroft carried out an opinion poll in Ipswich in October last year which showed Labour in the lead by 39% to 31% for the Conservatives – and bookmakers have made Mr Ellesmere favourite to win the seat.
However this survey puts the percentage for the two main parties at exactly the same as they achieved in the 2010 general election.
Mr Gummer said: “I always knew this campaign was going to be close and this confirms that. An awful lot can happen in the next week.
“This election is about the future of the country – but it is also about the future vision for Ipswich and I think people are recognising that.”
His team of supporters was showing off a new poster highlighting the number of jobs that had been created over the last five years.
Mr Ellesmere said national issues remained at the forefront of people’s concerns – and was convinced his party would get the votes it needed: “Things are very different to when we lost five years ago.
“The government keeps talking about the recovery – but while they may talk about a recovery, the people on the ground in Ipswich aren’t seeing any improvements in their living standards.”
But he warned that a large Green vote could benefit the Conservatives: “There are only two parties who can win this seat, and if you don’t vote for me you help the Tories,” he added.
Ms Vigneau disputed the findings that Ipswich was a two-horse race: “We are finding an increasing amount of support – many of our supporters are shy about telling how they vote.”