By Luke Andrews For Mailonline
Published: 00:01 BST, 8 October 2020 | Updated: 00:01 BST, 8 October 2020
More than a quarter of people in England have 'no confidence' in the Government's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, a poll has revealed.
This is a four-fold increase over the last six months and suggests the public were in favour of the original lockdown but have been less impressed by officials rules as time has gone on.
The proportion of those with 'full confidence' in the Prime Minister has also taken a nose-dive heading to a record low of less than five per cent.
Boris Johnson has became less visible to the public as the outbreak waned and blunders such as him getting lockdown rules wrong live on television may have dented public opinion.
But the drop in confidence in Westminster spin-doctors across England was not matched in other parts of the country.
In Wales almost six per cent of people said they had 'no confidence' in their Government.
And in Scotland Nicola Sturgeon gazumped Boris again as only one in 10 said they had no faith in her restrictions, but the number with 'full confidence' rose from ten per cent at the start of lockdown to 17 per cent.
The scientists said their survey - carried out in the week up to September 28 - reflected the damaging impact of fiascoes such as Dominic Cummings 264-mile trip to Barnard Castle and the failure to get the testing regime working.
Lead author Dr Daisy Fancourt, from University College London, said: 'Confidence levels in the Government have decreased markedly in England since the beginning of lockdown.
'This loss of confidence could be down to perceived government mismanagement of the pandemic coupled with a high number of Covid-19 cases in England.
'Early easing of lockdown in England and scandals such as government adviser Dominic Cummings' journey to Barnard Castle appear to have contributed to the fall.'
She added: 'The rising numbers of cases could also be to blame for the loss of confidence in Scotland and Wales, although both Scottish and Welsh devolved governments have seen a smaller reduction in confidence than the UK Government.
'This loss of confidence is deeply concerning as it is related to people's willingness to follow guidelines and rules. It is vital that the Government listens to people's concerns and tries to rebuild people's trust.'
The poll established attitudes by asking its 70,000 respondents to rate from one to seven - one being not at all and ten being completely - how confident they were in their Government. It has been running for 28 weeks.
Those that marked a one were considered to have 'no confidence' in the authorities, while those that marked a seven had 'full confidence'.