EU referendum: Remain moves slightly ahead in new poll while turnout still key

James Nickerson
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David Cameron Conducts Q&A With Workers On the European Referendum
Like the PM, most people want to stay in the EU - but they may not vote (Source: Getty)

Against a backdrop of growing speculation that the pro-Brexit camp is experiencing a surge of support, a new poll has found that Remain has gained marginal ground.

A new ORB poll has found a slight uptick for Remain to 52 per cent against Leave, which has fallen two points to 40 per cent.

The problem for Remain, however, is that among those who are certain to vote, Leave has risen to 47 per cent, while remain has fallen to 48 per cent.

Read more: What's the role of social media in the EU referendum?

"Two weeks is a long time in politics, and anything can happen before polling day, but the clear trend over the course of ORB’s polls for the Telegraph shows that Leave campaign has a turnout advantage over the Remain campaign," Sir Lynton Crosby wrote in the Telegraph.

If that trend persists, the vote could come down to the wire.

That's because 59 per cent of people say they will vote, but only 54 per cent of Remain voters will definitely vote, compared to 69 per cent of Leave voters who say the same.

The results over the series of ORB polls show the majority of the population back Remain, but Leave voters are more likely to vote.

Read more: Brexit could hit NHS and pharma

The findings indicate why both sides have been eager to push their sides to turn up and vote on the day. A look at social media use during the campaign also shows an emphasis on turnout, rather than attempting to convince people to vote one way or another.

​Still, the "sizeable expectations gap may work to Leave’s advantage by instilling a sense of urgency in its supporters while generating complacency in those intending to vote Remain", Crosby continues.

Earlier polls this week showed the Brexit camp gaining ground, resulting in bookmakers cutting odds on the prospect and the pound dropping in value.

The ORB poll also finds that overall people believe the UK is economically better off inside the EU, while immigration is a key concern.

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