Ed Miliband
Ed Miliband is struggling to convince the public of his leadership credentialsGetty

Ed Miliband is less popular than former Labour leader Gordon Brown, a new poll has revealed.

With six months to go until next year's general election, just 16% of people believe Miliband would make the best prime minister - more than Nick Clegg (5%) but fewer than the current occupant of Number 10, David Cameron (37%).

At the same stage in the build up to the 2010 election, Brown commanded 28% of the public's vote.

The YouGov poll, which was produced for The Sun, showed Labour had taken a one point lead over the Conservatives on 33% and Ukip had opened a 10-point advantage over the Liberal Democrats.

But Labour's slender lead does not look like leading Miliband to Downing Street next May. Almost a third of those surveyed believe the Conservatives will remain in power as the largest party in a coalition government, while 14% think Cameron can secure a Tory majority in the House of Commons.

Even though the results will make grim reading for Miliband and Labour, the party will be buoyed by a Lord Ashcroft poll that revealed Labour held tentative leads in nine out of 12 Tory marginal seats.