Which Britain is the question?
Do people still believe these polling ‘organizations’ and dinosaur media outlets in gauging the pulse of Western Man?
I don’t think so…
Harry Carr, Head of Sky Data
SKY NEWS – The events of 2016 have left Britain a nation divided, a Sky Data poll suggests.
Whether on community relations, the economy or politics, Britons say they feel less united as a country – and do not expect things to get any better in 2017.
A Nation Divided: Community Relations
Our polling shows three quarters of the public (74%) think Britain is a more divided country than it was a year ago, with just 7% saying it is more united.
A majority think the country is more divided than it was a year ago
And two thirds (67%) think we are less happy as a nation than a year before. Just 8% believe we are happier.
Many believe tensions between communities will increase in the wake of the Brexit referendum, with Article 50 set to be triggered by the end of March.
Some 55% think relations between communities will worsen as we leave the EU, while 14% think they will improve.
Most people think the country is a less happier place post-Brexit
Unsurprisingly, there is a wide disparity in views depending on opinions about the EU referendum.
Leave voters are evenly split – 30% think relations will worsen, 27% improve and 28% think there will be no change.
In contrast, 80% of Remain voters think relations will deteriorate, with just 1% expecting an improvement.
A majority also believe Britain is a more racist place than 12 months ago.
Buddy runs a gym in Burnley whose members come from a number of backgrounds
Nation Divided: ‘Not racist to want immigration controls’
The Home Office has said that allegations of crimes motivated by race or religious hate increased by 41% following the Brexit vote.
Some 57% think Britain is now more racist, with 6% believing we are now less racist as a country – 31% say there has been no change.
People think Britain is more racist than a year ago
A Nation Divided: The Economy
Looking ahead to 2017, many Britons are gloomy about the economy.
Half of the people we polled think the UK economy will get worse over the next year, 19% think it will improve and 17% say it will stay the same.
Many think the UK economy will get worse when we leave the EU
And 45% say the economy will deteriorate as we leave the EU, with 27% saying it will improve and 13% expecting no change.
Leave voters expect the economy to improve (54% to 12% who expect the economy to get worse), while the vast majority of Remain voters expect the economy to worsen (76% to 5% improve).
A total of 37% think their personal financial situation will worsen due to Brexit, with 35% saying it will stay the same and 12% expecting an improvement.
Many expect to see their finances hit by Brexit. Meanwhile, 42% of workers expect the prospects of their employers to remain stable as we leave the EU, with 29% expecting their prospects to get worse and 11% saying they will get better.
The fall in the value of the pound is a particular concern, with the majority expecting it to be bad for the economy (56%), British businesses (51%), their employers (50%) and themselves personally (50%).
A Nation Divided: Politics
We’ve all been told by the Prime Minister that “Brexit means Brexit”, but there is little trust that Britain’s politicians can make a success of it.
Just 11% think the Government is doing a good job in negotiating the UK’s departure from the EU, while 48% think they’re doing a bad job.
And more think the Government will get a bad deal (42%) than a good deal (22%) when negotiations are complete.
Views on Brexit appear to influence people’s views on this – 61% of Remainers think they will get a bad deal, with 10% expecting a good deal, while 41% of Leavers expect a good deal compared with 23% expecting a bad deal.
Much hope rests on Theresa May to get a good deal for Britain.
She is the only prominent politician seen as more likely to do a good job than a bad job negotiating Brexit, with little public trust in Jeremy Corbyn, Boris Johnson or MEP and former UKIP leader Nigel Farage.
UKIP immigration spokesman John Bickley did not believe that Britain had become more racist.
He told Sky News: “I think the problem with the word racism is its meaning has been changed particularly by people on the left over the last 15 years.
“If you talk about immigration now, and depending which party you’re in, you are called racist.”
He insisted that immigration was nothing to do with race.
“We don’t care about people’s ethnicity. It’s numbers,” he added.
A government spokesperson said: “We have repeatedly been clear that we don’t regard the referendum result as a vote for the UK to pull up the drawbridge.
“We will be a confident, outward-looking country that makes its own decisions.
“As the Prime Minister has said, Britain intends to be the most passionate, enthusiastic and convinced advocate of free trade anywhere in the world.”
Sky Data interviewed a nationally representative sample of 1,638 Sky customers online 26-28 November 2016. Data are weighted to the profile of the population.