BMG Research has undertaken exclusive polling for The i newspaper. The polling for May covers the Coronation and Britishness, in preparation for the coronation of King Charles III which took place on Saturday 6th May 2023.

  • Only 52% of Britons support having a Monarchy, with 23% opposing it. Support has slipped since the last time the question was asked in March 2021 (support in 2021 being 57% with 22% opposing).
  • Asked more directly, 39% of those asked want to continue with the head of state being a member of the royal family, with just over a quarter (28%) indicating that they would prefer the head of state to be an elected politician.
  • Since King Charles III became monarch, 1 in 4 (25%) say that they are less supportive of the Royal Family, though 59% of those asked say that their opinion has not changed.
  • When asked what words the public associate with the Royal Family, ‘patriotic’ was the most frequently chosen, with 38% selecting it. Other frequently associated words, possibly more negative ones, included ‘old-fashioned’ (36%) and ‘expensive’ (33%).
  • Word selection differs between age groups, with 18-24 year olds selecting words with more negative connotations, such as ‘old-fashioned’ (40%) and ‘unneccessary’ (31%). The most frequently selected words by those aged 65+ include ‘patriotic’  at 53% and ‘dedicated’ (51%) – indicative of a wider pattern in the polling whereby older people are much more positive. 
  • Half (49%) of those asked associate The Monarchy with ‘Britishness’, with 81% of those who do so saying the association is something they feel positive about.
  • The Duke and Duchess of Wales are the most popular senior royals, with around two-thirds approving of them each. The Princess Royal, Anne, is the next most popular royal, with 59% of respondents approving.
  • Since becoming King, Charles has had increased popularity, with net approval now sitting at +32%, versus +16% in March 2021. However, this is still lower than the popularity of The Queen, which found her popularity rating at 65% in 2021.

“As the UK prepares for the first coronation of a new monarch in over 70 years, there remains a significant degree of support for the Monarchy. Our polling shows more than half continue to support it, and more would back the continued rule of the Royal Family as head of state over the alternative of an elected politician. 

However, support does appear to be falling, with fewer expressing support for the institution that did so when we last polled these questions around two years ago. The good news for Charles is that his popularity has grown since becoming King, but he still is not nearly as popular as his late mother, who enjoyed more widespread respect and admiration.

The figures also mask a significant generational divide, with younger people expressing markedly less enthusiasm for the royals than older groups. Rather than “patriotic” and “dedicated”, younger groups are much more likely to describe the Royal Family as ‘old fashioned’ and ‘unnecessary’.

This alone highlights that the institution is not immune to the wider social and cultural shifts that are taking place in the country, and it will need to adapt and evolve if it is to remain relevant in modern Britain.”

An article by The i on The Coronation of King Charles III can be found here

Methodology, fieldwork dates, and a full breakdown of these results can be found here

For a more detailed breakdown of results from this poll, or any other results from our polling series, please get in touch by email or phone.

polling@bmgresearch.co.uk

@BMGResearch

0121 333 6006

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