European Parliament
Members of the European Parliament taking part in a voting session at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France on 7 June 2016 Frederick Frolin/AFP

A fictitious MEP was the second-most widely recognised of Wales' representatives in the European Parliament in a survey carried out by Cardiff University.

The Welsh Election Study 2016 released on Thursday (17 November 2016) found that people questioned chose the made up MEP 'Elwyn Davies' over real European Parliament members Jill Evans, Derek Vaughan and Kay Swinbu.

Wales' Ukip MEP Nathan Gill was the most recognised name in the survey, which contained a number of made-up names of MEPs.

The surveyors gave just over 3,000 people 30 seconds to respond to their questions in bid to stop them searching for the names on Google.

Professor Roger Scully, acting director of the Wales Governance Centre, said the results meant that Welsh voters were "unlikely to notice" the loss of the nation's four MEPs after the UK splits from the EU.

"I spent much of the early part of my academic career studying the European Parliament; one of the things that my research impressed on me was that most MEPs are very hard-working individuals," he said.

"Yet the efforts of Wales' four current representatives in the EU's elected chamber do not appear to have had much impact on the public. Barely one-fifth of our entire sample were able to correctly choose the name of an actual MEP from those presented before them.

"And some of those apparently correct answers may even have been guesses, as almost as many respondents picked names that turned out to be false."

Welsh Election Study 2016 survey results

  • 1. Ukip's Nathan Gill (16%)
  • 2. Elwyn Davies (12%) (fictitious)
  • 3. Plaid Cymru's Jill Evans (11%)
  • 4. Labour's Derek Vaughan (9%)
  • 5. Conservative Kay Swinburne (6%)
  • 6. David Sherwood (5%) (fictitious)
  • 7. Lynn Goodwin (5%) (fictitious)
  • 8. Jenny Green (5%) (fictitious)

Survey: 3,272 online respondents between 7 and 18 March 2016.