Britain may be heading for hung Parliament

The pound fell sharply after a projection suggested the Conservative Party could fail to win an outright majority in the election on 8 June.

May called the snap election in a bid to strengthen her hand in negotiations on Britain's exit from the European Union, to win more time to deal with the impact of the divorce and to strengthen her grip on the Conservative Party. She had called the early vote, despite repeatedly saying she would not do so, in an attempt to secure a strong mandate during Brexit negotiations and presumably to increase the 17-seat lead that she now has in the House of Commons.

The poll, commissioned by The Times, found the Conservative lead has slipped dramatically in recent weeks and is now within the margin of error.

An ICM poll for the Guardian showed May with a 12-point lead - enough for a big majority of around 100 but down two points from last week and a far cry from the record 22-point lead earlier this month.

That could leave the Tories 16 seats short of the overall majority of 326 needed to govern without the support of other parties.

But a second poll, released just hours later, had her lead at 15 percentage points, giving the pound some respite.

She repeated her party's line that Corbyn is "not ready" to take the lead on Brexit negotiations, which are due to begin just days after the general election.

Watch my latest video to see what these polls mean for the outcome of the UK General Election.

The claims have been made by Castle Point Labour candidate Joe Cooke, which come as a seat projection by pollster YouGov suggested that the United Kingdom could be heading for a hung parliament, with Labour making gains and Theresa May's Tories suffering losses.

The pound had a wobble when it slipped below $1.28 last week and has since struggled to recover lost ground.

A new Survation poll for ITV television put Labor up three points in a week on 37 percent, while the Conservatives were unchanged on 43 percent.

"It's actually about getting out and about, meeting voters and hearing directly from voters", the prime minister said.

"May's lead has fallen because she has run an inept, cliched campaign, thinking that a "strong and stable" slogan could suffice rather than a serious range of thought-out policies", Professor John Tonge, one of Britain's leading experts on political sciences, told Xinhua on Wednesday.

On Wednesday Mrs May said she preferred "taking questions and meeting people" on the campaign trail rather than "squabbling" with other politicians. There's still a big difference between winning a campaign and winning an election though.

  • Jon Douglas