UKIP is set to make dramatic gains in forthcoming Welsh elections according to a YouGov poll commissioned by ITV Wales.

The prediction that UKIP could gain five seats, putting the party on equal footing with the Conservatives, is based upon a dramatic shift in Regional List voting where UKIP ranks as the third party, on 12% of the vote.

Speaking outside the Senedd in Cardiff Bay, UKIP MEP for Wales John Bufton said: “The results of this poll are encouraging, but they tell us what we already know. As a party we are going from strength to strength.

“Voters are waking up to the fact that we are a credible alternative to the establishment parties who time and again let down the people.

“For too long, too few parties have dominated politics. This enables them to drastically shift policy as they wish as they believe they are untouchable. This also means that worryingly, it is a select few people at the very top of these parties with power and influence, while voters and backbenchers are simply ignored.

“This has become clear with the number of U-turns made by the Coalition Government in Westminster. Dismal policy making and broken promises are losing the establishment parties support.

“UKIP’s recent success isn’t just about growing consternation with the EU. It’s about voters waking up to the fact that we offer a whole range of policies that represent what the people of Wales want.

“UKIP is not just an alternative to a Tory vote. It’s an alternative vote to all the other parties that have failed, and will continue to fail, Welsh voters.

“These results show that people want UKIP as part of Wales’ political fabric to fight their corner on a range of issues.”