More than half in Northumberland believe we're better off in Europe - new survey

The survey results
The survey results

More than half of people in Northumberland think we would be better off economically in Europe - and a majority want to stick with the Single Market.

A new Brexit survey shows 55% of Northumberland Gazette readers believe Britain will be better off economically inside Europe. As well as this 61% said Britain should continue to be part of the single European market.

The results from Gazette readers reflect the national picture in a survey of almost 220,000 readers of Johnston Press, Newsquest and Trinity Mirror websites, which shows 52% believe Britain would be better off economically within Europe and 56% want Britain to be part of the single European market.

In Northumberland, the figures show a split between those who voted Leave and those who voted Remain in the referendum. Among Leave voters, 8% think Britain is better off economically in Europe, while nearly a quarter of these voters (24%) think we should continue to be part of the Single Market.

The study, run in partnership with Google Surveys, was completed online by 500 people who visited the Northumberland Gazette website.

Remain voters are, unsurprisingly, much more likely to think continuing close ties with Europe is a good idea, with 86% saying Britain is better off economically inside Europe and 86% saying we should continue to be part of the Single Market.

More than three-fifths of those surveyed on the site (62%) said they were not happy with the status of Brexit negotiations at the moment, with just one in six (16%) saying they were happy (the rest weren't sure).

Regardless of how those surveyed 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, 45% are unhappy with the status of negotiations compared to 30% who were happy. More than three-quarters of those who voted Remain (74%) said they were unhappy, compared to 7% who said they were happy.

However, most of those surveyed said they would still stick with how they voted - 87% of Leave voters and 93% of Remain voters. Leave voters were more likely to say they would not vote in the same way now, with one in 20 Leave voters saying they'd act differently (5%) compared to one in 38 Remain voters (3%).

Nationally, 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. The study was completed online by 216,800 people who visited the website.

The figures show a split between those who voted Leave and those who voted Remain in the referendum. Among Leave voters, just 9% think Britain is better off economically in Europe, compared to 85% of Remain voters, with 74% of Leave voters saying Britain would be better off economically outside Europe.

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

One in eight Leave voters aged between 18 and 24 (12%) 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% of Leave voters aged 65 and over think Britain will be better off economically inside Europe, with 82% 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%) of those aged 65 and over.

Those living in Scotland were most likely to say Britain would be better off economically inside Europe, at 63%, including 13% of Leave voters. They were also the most likely to say that Britain should stay in the Single Market, at 66%, followed by those in Northern Ireland, 60%, including 26% and 24% 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% each, with those in Yorkshire and the Humber and in the East Midlands the most likely to say Britain shouldn't be part of the Single Market, at 31%.

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 less than a fifth (18%) saying they were happy (the rest weren't sure).

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

Regardless of how those surveyed 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% are unhappy with the status of negotiations compared to 31% who were happy. More than three-quarters of those who voted Remain (76%) said they were unhappy, compared to 8% who said they were happy.

Half of Leave voters in Scotland and Northern Ireland (50%) 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%).

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

However, most of those surveyed said they would still stick with how they voted - 89% of people who said they voted in the referendum said they would vote the same way as last time if another referendum was held next week. Figures were similar for men (88%) and women (89%).

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

The older the person, the more likely they were to stick with their voting decision, but not by much. The survey showed 87% of 18 to 24-year-olds would vote the same way compared to 90% of those aged over 65.

Overall, 6% of those surveyed said they would not vote the same way, with 6% saying they were not sure. However, Leave voters were twice as likely to say they would change their vote (8%) compared to Remain voters (4%).

This gap potentially means that Remain would win if another referendum was held next week - 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% to 49%. 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.

The survey results suggest the gap between young Remain supporters and older Leave supporters may be increasing.

Those aged under 45 who voted Leave were most likely to say they would now vote differently, 10%, compared to just 5% of Leave voters aged 65 and over, while Remain voters aged 55 and over were most likely to say they had changed their view (5%), compared to 3% of Remain voters aged under 45.

Leave voters in Scotland (11%), Northern Ireland (9%) and London (9%) 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 5%) 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% saying they would not be acceptable.

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