Cost of living main concern for Londoners, poll shows

With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and sanctions against Moscow pushing fuel and energy prices higher, Chancellor Rishi Sunak is under pressure to do more to ease the squeeze on household budgets in his spring statement next week.

In the poll, conducted for London Communications Agency by Deltapoll, 52 per cent highlighted the cost of living, ahead of housing (29 per cent), the Ukraine war (26 per cent) and crime (25 per cent).

Energy bills are set to soar by nearly £700 a year from April as the energy price cap rises while average fuel prices have hit record highs on forecourts. Meanwhile the Chancellor is set to press ahead with plans to raise National Insurance by 1.25 percentage points in April.

On Sunday, the Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove ruled out scrapping the National Insurance rise but acknowledged cost-of-living pressures “will accumulate as a result of what’s going on in Ukraine”.

Labour has called on the Government to act over the cost of living crisis after its own analysis revealed the average family is facing an annual rise of £386 in the cost of petrol.

The squeeze on household finances is expected to provide one of the major backdrops to crucial local elections in England on May 5.

According to the poll for LCA by Deltapoll, Labour has opened up a 30-point lead over the Conservatives in the capital.

The poll puts Sir Keir Starmer’s party on 54 per cent, the Tories on 24 per cent, the Liberal Democrats on 9 per cent and the Greens on 5 per cent. Other parties score a combined 9 per cent.

Although the Ukraine crisis has given Boris Johnson a respite from the partygate scandal, the Prime Minister is still expected to drag heavily on the Conservatives’ performance at the elections – a major test for him and his party.


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