Conservative lead narrows to nine points one week before election

In stark contrast to a string of opinion polls that have suggested May's Conservatives will increase their majority, the new constituency-by-constituency modelling by YouGov showed it might lose 20 of the 330 seats it holds and the opposition Labour Party could gain almost 30 seats, The Times said.

Betting markets give a more than 80-percent probability of May winning an overall majority, though betting markets were wrong ahead of the unexpected Brexit result in the June 23 referendum.

The Conservatives would still be the biggest party, but would not have an overall majority.

Sterling traded half a percent lower against the U.S. dollar after the YouGov data was published.

The prime minister defended her decision by saying she prefers to "taking questions and meeting people" on the campaign trail rather than "squabbling" with other politicians.

The Times reports that a constituency-by-constituency poll by YouGov suggests that the Conservatives could lose 20 seats in the general election, while Labour could gain 30. They say Britain needs a strong and stable government to get the best Brexit deal for the country and its people.

The results follow a heated seven-way TV debate featuring most of the party leaders, only SNP's Nicola Sturgeon and the Conservatives' Theresa May declined to take part.

The pound is falling against the euro and dollar on Wednesday after a new poll suggested that next week's election could return a hung parliament.

When Theresa May announced a snap election in April, she was widely expected to register a landslide victory over its rival, the Labour Party, in the upcoming national elections.

May backed the "remain" campaign in the runup to last year's referendum on European Union membership, though she made few public appearances.

May had ruled out any face-to-face debates during the campaign and Corbyn had followed suit, before changing his stance.

A poll conducted by Survation for ITV's Good Morning Britain program showed May's lead had dropped to 6 percentage points from 9 points a week ago and 18 points two weeks ago. "The prime minister seems to have difficulties in meeting anyone or having a debate", Corbyn said.

The latest YouGov poll has predicted a hung parliament, with just one week to go before the election.

More alarming for the Conservatives was that, asked who would make the best prime minister, 37 per cent of Londoners picked Corbyn, compared to 34 per cent for May.

Corbyn and Farron were joined by the leaders of the Green party, the UK Independence Party and Welsh nationalists Plaid Cymru and the deputy leader of the Scottish National Party. The party's apparently unassailable lead has shrunk.

"Amber Rudd is up next".

  • Eleanor Harrison