Public scepticism about whether the London Olympics represent value for money for British taxpayers has receded now the Games have begun, according to a ComRes poll for The Independent.
Some 50 per cent of people believe the Olympics will be worth the £9.3bn being spent from the public purse, while 42 per cent disagree and 8 per cent are “don’t knows.”
Opinion has turned round since ComRes last tested this idea in March, when only 40 per cent of people thought the Games would be worth it and 51 per cent disagreed.
The latest poll suggests that last Friday’s opening ceremony made the public feel more positive about the Games. Only 43 per cent of those questioned on Friday before the ceremony began at 9pm agreed the Olympics would be worth the money, but the proportion rose to 53 per cent amongst those who answered after 9pm and over the rest of the weekend. Of those questioned on Saturday, 52 per cent thought the Games were worth it and on Sunday the figure rose to 57 per cent.
Overall, men (54 per cent) are more likely than women (47 per cent) to agree that the Olympics are worth the cost. Higher social grades are more likely to agree than lower social groups: 57 per cent in the top AB group believe the Games are worth the money, compared with 43 per cent in the bottom DE grade.
ComRes interviewed 1,004 GB adults by telephone between 27 and 29 July, 2012. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults and by past vote recall. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.