UK's Labour holds 30-point poll lead over Sunak's Conservatives

PMQs at the House of Commons in London

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's opposition Labour Party has increased its poll lead over Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's Conservatives to stand 30 points ahead, according to a YouGov poll for the Times newspaper.

The poll, coming ahead of an election later this year, put Labour on 48% and the ruling Conservatives on 18%, the worst reading for Sunak since he became prime minister 18 months ago, according to the Times.

The gap between the two parties was the biggest since October 2022, when Conservative support collapsed in the weeks after the financial meltdown caused by the mini-budget of Sunak's predecessor Liz Truss.

It is the first survey since local and mayoral elections last week inflicted heavy losses on the Conservatives.

A previous YouGov/Times poll, published on May 2, gave Labour a 26 point lead.

Polls have consistently given Labour an around 20-point lead over the Conservatives, ahead of the election which Sunak has said he expects to call in the second half of the year.

The Conservatives have been in government, either in coalition or on their own, since 2010, with the tenure largely marked by the vote to leave the European Union and scandal over the handling of the COVID crisis.

The country has had five different prime ministers in that time.

(Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Kate Holton)