A new poll suggests that 61% of Conservative supporters want Britain to leave the European Union provided it could maintain its close trading links.
The survey, carried by ComRes for The Independent, appears to show that 54% of voters feel the same way.
It comes on the day the Tory vice chairman Michael Fabricant suggested his party make an election pact with the UK Independence Party, which wants to quit the EU.
More top news
Sir Vince Cable has become the new leader of the Liberal Democrats, after no other nominations were put forward.
Drying up across eastern parts this afternoon with showers continuing across Ireland.
Gordon Brown has said forced child migration schemes that continued until the 1970s amounted to "government-induced trafficking".