Labour is in position to win the forthcoming Corby by-election comfortably, according to the first opinion poll taken in the Northamptonshire constituency since the Tory MP Louise Mensch announced that she was resigning.
The poll of 1,500 voters, commissioned by the Tory billionaire Lord Ashcroft, gives Labour 52 per cent of the vote, the Conservatives 37 per cent and the Liberal Democrats seven per cent.
The most striking difference between this poll and the 2010 general election result in Corby is the collapse of the Liberal Democrat vote, which has fallen from 14 per cent. The poll suggests that the Conservative vote is holding up reasonably well by comparison, falling by five points from the 2010 level of 42 per cent.
Even so, the nine-point swing to Labour, which matches the results of national opinion polls, would be enough to give Ed Miliband an outright majority in the Commons at a general election.