London: For the first time in nearly a decade, Britain`s opposition Labour Party has registered a strong lead over Prime Minister David Cameron`s Conservatives in an opinion poll.
A definitive Guardian/ICM poll released here on Tuesday gives the Ed Miliband-led Labour a 12-point lead over Cameron`s Tories.
Labour now stands at 41 per cent of the vote while the Tories are on just 29 per cent, the biggest Labour lead in the polling series since May 2003 during the brief political bounce for former Prime Minister Tony Blair.
Meanwhile, coalition partners Liberal Democrats sank to 13 per cent and the right-wing UK Independence Party (UKIP) were at 9 per cent.
A separate YouGov poll for the Sun newspaper gives Labour an equally strong 11-point lead.
It puts Labour on 42 per cent, the Tories on 31 per cent, the Lib Dems on 11 per cent and UKIP on 9 per cent.
The poll also showed that voters marginally favour Labour on the economy, putting the party on 28 points, with the Conservatives on 27.
Two other polls over the weekend, by the Sunday Times and Observer, had also given the party a solid 10-point lead.
The positive poll results for Labour come amid renewed speculation about rising tensions between Miliband and shadow chancellor Ed Balls, who warned the party leader that Labour would be "stupid" to fight the next election opposing a referendum on the European Union.
He made the remark only weeks after Miliband said he did not want an in/out referendum on Britain`s EU membership.
Cameron has committed the Conservatives to renegotiating Britain`s membership of the EU and putting the new deal to the people in an in/out referendum by 2017.
The sluggish economy will, however, be the decisive battleground of the next election expected in 2015.
Most voters continue to point the finger at the last Labour government rather than the current coalition for the ongoing economic slowdown.