Eight out of 10 readers of a regional daily say they will vote to leave the European Union, according to the biggest ever poll conducted by the newspaper.
Nearly 8,000 people have been surveyed by the Express & Star, Wolverhampton, on the subject, with 86pc telling the paper they feel the EU interferes too much with the UK.
The poll also found immigration was the key issue for 63pc of those taking part with a further 82pc saying they did not believe that EU membership had benefited the Black Country or Staffordshire.
Two-thirds also stated Mayor of London Boris Johnson, himself a former Express & Star reporter, was most likely to influence their vote, compare to 22pc for Prime Minister David Cameron and 12pc for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Express & Star editor Keith Harrison said: “These results reflect the biggest response we have ever had to a political poll and I am sure that politicians on both sides of the debate will sit up and take note.
“We believe that the nearly 8,000-strong responses is a significant indication of the strength in feeling among the Express & Star readership in the Black Country and Staffordshire.”
Mr Johnson told the newspaper: “I’m encouraged to see that so many of the Express & Star’s readers recognise that the UK has a fantastic future outside the EU.
“It doesn’t sound like Express & Star readers need any encouragement from me given their massive support for a vote to leave. Clearly they understand this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to seize a brighter future. I hope they take that opportunity.”
In total, 7,979 people completed the 10 question survey to give their views. Of these, 7,538 voted online via the Express & Star’s website and 441 submitted postal entries.
Labour Wolverhampton South East MP Pat McFadden, co-chairman of the pro-EU Labour In group and former shadow minister for Europe, said: “I understand there is a lot of concern locally about immigration and this is a big factor in these survey results. But I hope voters think very carefully about a move that could damage us economically and hurt investment and jobs.
“Being part of the EU free trade area is a major reason why the UK attracts inward investment in areas like the automotive industry, financial services and more.”