With just a week to go to voting day, there has been little if any sign of the Tories pulling back on Labour's huge lead in the polls. One poll this week seemed an aberration when it reduced Labour's lead to just five points - others showed the lead actually rising again. Prime Minister John Major still says he is confident of winning the election, that he is 'baffled' by the polls which 'bear no relationship to what I feel going around the country'. But speculation has already begun on who will replace him when the Tories go into opposition, about when he will quit, how far to the Eurosceptic right will the party swing and what will happen to the likes of pro-European Kenneth Clarke, the Chancellor. Try as he may to turn the focus on to education or law and order, Mr Major's own lieutenants have always brought it back to the core issue of Europe, the one that has dogged the Tories for the past seven years or more. The Prime Minister effectively had to abandon normal campaigning several days ago, when it became clear that more than 200 candidates and several ministers were making clear in their election statements that they would not accept a single European currency. It prompted Mr Major into arguably his first display of true leadership in the election campaign, with an appeal to 'like me or loathe me but don't tie my hands' in negotiations with European Union member countries. All but one of the national polls since the election was called have put the Conservative share of the vote at 31 per cent, plus or minus three percentage points. Apart from the single poll, Labour's lowest point has been 45 per cent for the party. Within this, the Tories' average share has pulled up just three points from 29 per cent to 32 per cent. This has a strong effect on Labour's overall anticipated majority if translated into votes, but does not change the position that if the polls are correct Labour will still win. Labour leaders admit off the record that they knew their huge lead could only go down during the election campaign. That is why, in their view, Mr Major called a six-week campaign, hoping slow attrition would take its toll on Labour. So far it does not appear to have done so to any extent, and any real loss by Labour has been in the direction of the Liberal Democrats so far. The Tories will require 43 per cent of the vote to retain power. Between 43 per cent and 39 per cent there will be a hung Parliament, but with a lower vote for the party Labour will have an overall majority. With an unprecedented five weeks of campaigning so far, both parties privately admit that voters are becoming increasingly bored by the whole event. There is talk of a 'passion deficit'. The weariness is expected to play into the hands of the Tories, for what it is worth. The polls currently find only 64 per cent of people say they are certain to vote. At the same stage in 1992, 72 per cent said they were certain to vote, and 78 per cent voted. On the basis of those figures, a turnout of between 69 and 70 per cent can be expected on polling day - and Mr Blair believes it will be Labour which suffers most from the apathy, purely because the party's lead appears so strong. The lowest turnout in recent elections was in 1983. Then Margaret Thatcher achieved a landslide victory for the Conservatives on an overall voting turnout of 72.8 per cent. Those figures remain the basis for the Tories' last hope.