Coffee House

The Royal Wedding by numbers

28 April 2011

I know, I know, it’s deeply unromantic to anticipate tomorrow’s Royal Wedding through
the prism of opinion polling. But as no one ever said that a political blog has to be romantic — and as there are some quite noteworthy findings among all the data — we thought we’d put
together a quick round-up for CoffeeHousers. So here goes:

1) The guest list.
There has, I’m sure you’ve noticed, been quite some hubbub over the fact the Gordon Brown and Tony Blair haven’t been invited to the wedding — especially in view
of the Syrian ambassador’s invitation, since withdrawn. But some new polling from YouGov — highlighted by PoliticsHome — suggests that the public agree with the twin snub for our
former PMs. According to their results, the New Labour duo are among the most unsuitable invitees for the occasion, surpassed only in unsuitability by Tara Palmer Tomkinson. I wonder where the
Syrian ambassador would have featured, had he been included in the line-up:

2) Supportive, but not that interested.
Across all the polling companies, there’s general support for the idea of the Royal Wedding and its effect on the country. ComRes, for instance,
have 62 per cent of their respondents agreeing that it’s good for Britain, with 64 per cent saying that it’s good for the economy. ICM, meanwhile, have 74 per cent saying that it will lend the
national psyche a "strong feel-good factor." But people don’t seem to be that personally wrapped up in the Wedding. YouGov have 43 per cent interested in it, against 56 per cent who
aren’t. What’s more, 55 per cent say that the media coverage is "too much," with only 2 per cent saying that it’s too little.

3) The Royal approval ratings. Courtesy of YouGov:

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4) The Monarchy itself. Would people prefer a Republic to a Monarchy? No, it seems. All the main polling companies have the Monarchy ahead by a margin of four-to-one. On more
specific questions, the margins are a little closer, but still slanted in the Royal Family’s favour. In an ICM poll, 47 per percent of people believe that the Monarchy is a unifying force, against
36 per cent who say that it’s divisive. For ComRes, 50 per cent think that it isn’t an undue burden on the taxpayer, against 33 per cent who believe that it is.

5) King William? On the question over whether the crown should bypass Prince Charles and settle on Prince William’s head instead, the answer appears, largely, to be
"aye". In a YouGov poll, the son outstrips his father by 47 per cent to 34 per cent. For ICM, it’s 46 per cent to 40 per cent. Only Ipsos MORI have Charles in the lead, but only just
— at 47 per cent to 46 per cent.

And then there’s one of the weirdest, but most entertaining, questions of all, asked by YouGov: "Imagine you were single and of an appropriate age, if he asked, would you marry Prince
William?" The response? 24 per cent would, but 66 per cent would not. Happily, we assume, Kate Middleton belongs in the former category.

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Show comments
  • Tim Reed

    The lack of invites to Blair & Brown serves one worthy purpose in my view – declaring them both irrelevant and ‘of the past’.
    Good riddance too, as we all face a future blighted by their recklessness while in office.

  • Johnbirch

    Blair and brown should be shot for what they did to our country, never mind being invited to the wedding.

  • Verity

    Woody – Somehow I don’t think that the socialists regard Tony Blair as one of their own. Nor Gordon. They’re dead meat.

  • Baroness Verity

    HirstJW – I always enjoy posts from the legally brain dead because it testifies to the strength of the human spirit!

    You write: If the Palace sees fit to invite the odd dictator or two and other assorted charlatans but snub two of our own previous heads of democratically elected governments, then that is entirely a matter for them. That is true.., it is, as it is the Royal family who are paying for the wedding. It is a family wedding and there is no burden on the taxpayer, and, of course, no burden at all, anyway, nor on the millions of immigrants, “asylum seekers” and other non-taxpayers. The wedding has been paid for by the Queen.

    Who on earth are we to question our social betters? Who knows, it might be a pebble in the scales that will eventually tip against the whole rotten, stinking system of privilege and arrant stupidity.

    How is that? A pebble that weighs zero, because it doesn’t exist, is going to upset the system?

    Your bitter “reasoning” and your name remind me of that arrant idiot John Hirst.

  • Woody

    Sarah Brown is not as nice as she seems.

    Prince William needs to watch his back because Labour will have their revenge, no matter how long it takes. they are full of spite and bear a grudge like no other.

  • John HW

    If the Palace sees fit to invite the odd dictator or two and other assorted charlatans but snub two of our own previous heads of democratically elected governments, then that is entirely a matter for them. Who on earth are we to question our social betters? Who knows, it might be a pebble in the scales that will eventually tip against the whole rotten, stinking system of privilege and arrant stupidity.

  • arnoldo87

    So the Royals reject Brown and Blair but invite instead the adulterer John Major.

    How appropriate.

    But don’t be dismayed, Tony and Gordon. You may get an invite to Will’s next marriage.

  • Keith

    Tiberius @ 1:40:

    It is superfluous to ask whether single men would marry Kate: they all would. She will be the first authentically Hot royal woman since – who? – Elizabeth Wydville?

  • dorothy wilson

    Maybe I’m slightly cynical but I can’t help wondering if Mrs Brown is behind some of the coverage of the lack of invitation for her hubby.

    After all, the Mail has given considerable mileage to this and the editor in chief of that paper is godfather to one of the Brown’s sons.

  • Baroness Verity

    PS to Jane – “Further, Tony Blair was one of our longest serving PMs”.

    You missed out a word. “one of our longest SELF-serving PMs”.

  • Baroness Verity

    Jane, let send in a list of what other things we can do to alienate people like you.

  • lescam

    I was delighted to read that Blair and Brown were omitted. I would have been even happier if no politicians at all had been invited, not even the PM. If this “is not a full State occasion, and no elected heads of govt are invited”, how come Daft Dave, Clonking Clegg and Moron Miliband have been?

    I derive great pleasure from the thought that Cherie will be unable to refuse to curtsey to the Queen this time. As for the Sage of Cowdenbeath & Kirkcaldy, he can stay at home and throw phones at the wall.

  • Ian Walker

    Harry polling above Anne?

    Amazing what putting yourself on the front line can do for your public image, eh? If only some of our politicians who keep starting wars had the same cojones.

  • Nicholas

    This odd 38% (in every sense) keeps cropping up. 38% of republican rabble who want Baroness Ashton as Head of State, 38% prepared to vote for thinly veiled crypto fascist communists, 38% burrowed into the giant socialist state public sector brainwashing kids, tyrannising the population over bin contents and arresting people for saying the wrong things. No doubt these are the same bolshies who want AV, laugh at unfunny lefty comedians on the BBC and think people should be arrested for singing songs. I thought the puritans had all buggered off to America but apparently not. We still have a rump of the miserable bastards who want to turn us into East Germany.

    Mz Eagle that’s you that is, dear.

  • Verityred


    That was one of the worst cut and paste stooge postings I have eaver read. No feeling, no credibility, just a stale spouting of your daily orders.

    Ps: remove iron rod from you know where.

  • Chris

    @ Chris lancashire: Well, she is a goer (allegedly.)

  • Frank P

    Austin Barry (1.46pm)

    Your last sentence: was that a generalisation? Or did I miss some reported incident that requires historical comparisons? I’m all agog!

  • toco

    Guido Fawkes was the very first to spot the scary fact that wherever Jonah Brown goes is blighted.He was in America the other day just before the tornado struck-enough said I believe in terms of avoiding cats,walking under ladders etc.

  • Extranea

    There’s a Royal Wedding? How did I not hear about it?

  • Jane

    I feel it is a serious misjudgement by the Palace not inviting the two former PM’s I am not persuaded by the argument that they have not been awarded the Order of the Garter. Further, Tony Blair was one of our longest serving PMs and the palace has alienated people like me who voted for him. It confirms my belief that the Firm are anti Labour as too are the press who have whipped up anti Blair feelings. They are doing the same now to Nick Clegg.

    The Palace has managed to spoil the celebration of the wedding. I will never forgive them. Similarly, because of the ghastly press coverage of the AV campaign – I was appalled at a leaflet I have just received – I shall vote for AV and the Lib Dems. By the way – I will also have a round of golf tomorrow morning and avoid the news channels. I expect the golf course will be pretty busy tomorrow too. We are the majority whose views are never considered.

  • normanc

    Just scanned the bullet points as the Royal Family leaves me cold but why do we need to have either a Republic or a Monarchy?

    THe Queen is little more than a figurehead so it’s not as things will collapse without either of them so why not just scrap the Royal Family and replace it with nothing?
    Or at least ask that question rather than saying that four to one in favour of Monarchy as opposed to Republic which makes the Royal Family seem popular when I suspect a lot of people couldn’t give a monkeys but have no desire to replace one figurehead by another.

  • glenlivetguy

    2000 Abbey guests but not 4 spaces for two former PM’s and their wives.Clear message to future PM’s, dont leak to film maker what should remain as highly confidential conversations ( Blair) and dont leave economy in meltdown with scandalous contracts in place (Brown). Trust KG’s will never come their way leading to permanent exclusion from National celebrations.

  • Chris lancashire

    I’m OK with Tara going.

  • Austin Barry

    Slightly off-topic, but I just read this on the Muslims against Crusades web-site.

    “We strongly advise Prince William and his Nazi sympathiser, to withdraw from the crusader British military and give up all affiliation to the tyrannical British Empire.

    We promise that should they refuse, then the day which the nation has been dreaming of for so long will become a nightmare and that it will inshaa’allah (God willing) eclipse the protests in Barking, Downing Street and the events of November 11.”

    Surely, this is a threat of terrorism and our ‘robust’ police should take some immediate action – well, at least those who aren’t lurking in a Soho brothel.

  • Tiberius

    If you’re looking for reasons to be optimistic about the country’s future, the government’s education and welfare reforms are the starting point, but William and Kate come alongside.

    The New Labour years were a sequence of cultural decline. The governent was an abomination (which throughly justifies the omission of Blair and Brown from the wedding guest list, whatever Toby Young may think), and at times the monarchy hardly provided an example of good behaviour.

    So let’s hope for an improvement in the country’s general state.

    Incidentally, I assume YouGov thought it superfluous to ask men whether they would marry Kate.

  • Maggie

    Quite right Liz. Why waste invitations on people who made no attempt to disguise their wishes to be considered Head of State in place of HRH and who, while misappropriating public money on an industrial scale, kept the real Head of state on short rations. These are the men who subjected the Queen to a barrage of political spite – a refusal to maintain the Royal yacht, refusals to provide adequate funds for the upkeep of Royal palaces and a wicked, wicked dumbing down of the Millennium celebrations. There would also be a danger that an invitation would have fed into Tony, Gordon and Cherie’s delusions of importance.

  • Bill

    Why would two Republican anti Monachists want to attend anyway ? Slimy boggers.

  • whatawaste

    If Blair and Brown were Knights of the Garter then not being invited would have been a snub. Presumably Royal protocol insists that KoGs be invited and secondly this is not a state occasion but from all the fuss you could have fooled me.

  • Liz Brown

    Why should Bliar and Bruin have had invites? This is not a State occasion and the couple should be able to invite whomsoever they like – it is after all, their wedding.

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