EU Referendum

September 10, 2010, 9:58 PM GMT+0

Almost half of the British public would vote for Britain to leave the European Union (EU) if there were a referendum on British membership, our poll reveals. 47% would want Britain to leave the EU compared to 33% who say they would vote for Britain to retain its membership.

The older generation appear particularly keen for Britain to leave its EU days behind. A substantial 57% of those over 60 say they would vote to leave the EU, compared to 31% of the younger 18-24 age group.

This comes as Conservative European MP Daniel Hannan launches a cross-party campaign to demand a referendum on Britain’s EU membership, the promise of which has made and broken by multiple prime ministers during election campaigns.

Britain’s last national referendum was led by Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson in 1975, on the issue of membership of the European Economic Community. The ‘yes-vote’ campaign prevailed, with 66% of the population opting to remain a member of the international body.

On Monday, MPs announced their decision to hold a referendum on voting reform as an alternative to the current first-past-the-post system, a move that has added fuel to the EU Referendum Campaign. ‘There is an awful lot more demand for a referendum on EU memberships than there is for a referendum on the voting system,’ says Hannan. It seems that were a referendum to be held, British response could be significant.

Survey details and full results