The latest BMG poll for the Evening Standard reveals at least eight out of ten people have never heard of each of the six candidates who entered the leadership race: Bill Etheridge MEP, Diane James MEP, Elizabeth Jones, Lisa Duffy, Phillip Broughton and Jonathan Arnott MEP.

The findings, which come ahead of the leadership contest winner announcement this week, reveal Liz Jones is the least well-known contender with 92% of the adults interviewed saying they had not heard of her. Bill Etheridge followed with 91% unaware of him. Lisa Duffy and Phillip Broughton follow both on 89% and 86% said they have not heard of Jonathan Arnott.

The most well known candidate was Diane James, although an equally high proportion of 85% said they have not heard of her. Amongst those who claim they are interested in politics, 80% have not heard of Diane James rising to 94% of those who say they are not interested in politics. Even amongst current Ukip supporters, 71% still say they have not heard her.

Steven Woolfe, Ukip’s immigration spokesman, was found to have a higher profile than the six candidates with 80% saying they have not heard of him however his leadership race ended when he was excluded for a late nomination.

Among Ukip voters, recognition levels ranged from just 12% to 30%.

Dr Michael Turner, Research Director at BMG Research, said “After what could be considered a seminal summer for most Ukippers, these results don’t paint the best picture for a party that has ambitions to ‘push-on’ in British politics. The polling suggests that the slate of six candidates vying for the top of the party are much more ‘b-list’ than the party has been used to in recent years, especially when compared to political big-hitters such as Nigel Farage and Douglas Carswell. Even among UKIP supporters, less than three-in-ten (29%) say that they recognise the front-runner, Diane James.

Perhaps tragically for his supporters, had Steven Woolfe actually made it onto the ballot paper, he would have been the most recognisable candidate among both the general public (20%) and UKIP supporters (37%).”

An article based on these polling results, released by the Evening Standard, can be found here.

Fieldwork dates and methodology can be found here.

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 visit our website or get in touch by email or phone.


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Lauren Harris – Senior Research Executive

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