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Labour's backing in the North West may be on the rise to give them a bigger lead over the Conservatives, according to an exclusive nationwide survey of voting intentions.

Across the region, 46% of people said they are planning to vote Labour later this week, compared to 40% who said that was their planned vote at the start of the election campaign.

The proportion of respondents backing the Tories is at 21%, compared to 23% backing the party at the start of the campaign.

A similar survey at the start of May found 29% of respondents in the region said they were planning to vote Tory on June 8 compared to the 26% who said they voted for the party in 2015, while the Labour vote was at 48%, up from the 45% who said they had voted for the party in 2015.

Other parties have seen their vote share squeezed by the contest between Labour and Conservatives - the Lib Dem vote was 3%, compared to 4% saying they supported the party at the start of the campaign, UKIP was 4.5%, down from 4.7%, although the Greens have seen a small increase and were on 2%, up from 1.8%.

Seven in 10 of people who planned to vote Conservative at the start of the campaign are still backing the party (71%), but 15% have switched to Labour, and 10% say they are no longer sure who they will vote for.

Labour on the other hand seem to be picking up support from all sides, while 92% of those who planned to vote Labour at the start of the campaign are sticking with their party, 30% of people who previously planned to vote Lib Dem said they have switched to Labour, as have 40% of those who had been planning to vote Green, and 13% of those previously backing UKIP.

A fifth of respondents who said they were not sure what their vote would be at the start of the campaign are now behind Labour (22%), compared to 3% who have decided to vote Conservative, although 68% still have not made up their minds.

Labour's potentially improving prospects may be down in part to Jeremy Corbyn's performance, 63% of respondents in the region think he's had the best general election campaign.

While 91% of those planning to vote Labour think Corbyn has been having the best campaign, so do 58% of Lib Dem voters and 54% of Green voters, for both a bigger proportion than think the leader of the respective party they are backing is doing best. Of those planning to vote Conservative, 78% think Theresa May has had the best campaign, while a fifth, 19%, think Jeremy Corbyn's has been better.

Missing the leaders' debate on BBC1 last week may not have helped the perception of May's performance, as 62% of respondents said it was the wrong decision, including 86% of those planning to vote Labour, 79% of those backing the Lib Dems and even 16% of Tory voters, although 66% of this group think she was right to skip the debate.

However, the survey suggests the debates had only a limited impact on how people are planning to vote, with just 8% of respondents saying it had caused them to change their vote. People now planning to vote Green were the most likely to say they had changed their vote as a result of the debates, 31%.

Labour voters were the most likely to feel more fired up as a result of the debates, with 42% saying they had made them even more determined to vote for their party, compared to 19% of Conservative voters saying the same.

Most respondents said the party they were voting for (64%) was most important, rather than the party leader, 23%, or the local candidate, 13%. Party was particularly important for those planning to vote Labour, 73% put it top compared to 51% of those planning to vote Conservative. Theresa May's campaign, which has more strongly focused on her seems to have had an impact, with 51% of those planning to vote Tory saying the leader of the party was the most important thing to them.

Social care and the NHS are the issues most likely to determine how a tow-fifths of respondents are planning to vote, 38%, including 56% of those planning to vote Labour and 37% of Lib Dem voters, followed by Brexit, the key issue for 19% of respondents, including 46% of Conservative voters and 44% of UKIP voters.

Half of respondents in the region (53%) said they have had candidate's leaflets sent in the post, and 12% said they has seen a candidate or campaigner locally and 8% said a campaigner had knocked on their door. However, nearly two-fifths, 37%, said they have seen candidates, campaigners or received leaflets.