Despite a YouGov poll predicting a 1997-style Labour landslide at the next general election, the new Exmouth and East Exeter seat is predicted to remain Conservative.

The YouGov survey of 14,000 people forecasts that the Tories will retain just 169 seats, one of which is the Exmouth and East Exeter seat, while Labour will sweep to power with 385 – giving Sir Keir Starmer a 120-seat majority.

However, the political map of Devon remains mainly blue, with the Conservatives also expected to hold the new Honiton & Sidmouth constituency.

The current Tory MP for East Devon, Simon Jupp, will be up against the current Tiverton & Honiton Liberal Democrat MP Richard Foord for this seat.

The YouGov poll predicts that the Conservatives will win 33 per cent of the vote, the Lib Dems 25 per cent, Labour 20 per cent, Reform UK 15 per cent, the Green Party 4 per cent and ‘Others’ 3 per cent.

Exeter and East Devon Labour have not selected a candidate for this seat yet, a spokesman said: "We are in the process of selecting our candidate at the moment. I don’t think it will be a landslide victory for us here, it will be close but Labour will be the tactical vote because of East Exeter and we will do all we can to bring this new constituency, the positive, progressive MP is is crying out for."

Conservative wins are also predicted in the two neighbouring constituencies newly created by boundary changes -  Exmouth & Exeter East and Tiverton & Minehead. However Exeter, a strong Labour seat, remains a pinpoint of red in the Tory-blue map, and Labour is expected to take Plymouth Moor View from the Conservatives.

Tory candidate for Exmouth and East Exeter David Reed told the Journal: “Although the recent YouGov poll appears to be favourable for Conservatives in Exmouth and Exeter East, we are taking nothing for granted. The general election could be many months away, and as we all know, lots can change.

"My team and I are campaigning hard week in, week out to prove to everyone in our new constituency that their vote is safe with the Conservatives. This approach is centred on listening to everyone in Exmouth and Exeter East and getting on with the job of delivering our priorities. Only by doing this can we build a genuine and long-lasting trust; something that we desperately need more of in our politics. I am here to serve everyone in Exmouth and Exeter East, and If I am fortunate enough to be elected as your Member of Parliament you can always hold me accountable to this.” 

In response, Daniel Wilson, from Exeter and East Devon Labour said: "I find it astonishing that the poll suggests E&EE would remain Tory at the General Election. I canvassed during the local elections, in which the Tories did terribly and the strength of ill feeling towards the Conservatives, on the door step was incredible. The reasons to be angry with the Tories is an all you can eat buffet.  NHS waiting lists, Partygate, the economy tanking, Brexit failing, sewage in our water, the Rwanda mess, constantly changing PMs and all the lies and sleaze. There’s something for everyone.

"This area has changed massively, I am the first Labour candidate elected in Exmouth for 47 years, in a ward that used to return three EDDC councillors and now returns none.   Other than Brixington, Exmouth won’t vote blue and when you add East Exeter to the mix, that area represents 30% of the constituency and it heavily votes Labour.   

"Nationally, the Conservatives aren’t doing well, locally Simon Jupp is an unpopular MP and since he announced he was standing in H&S he’s been non-existent here. Had the Tories stood a local candidate for this general election, they might have stood a better chance but David Reed is another Tory tourist pretending to care about the area."