According to results released by the Pew Research Centre yesterday, a new poll has found that fewer than half of Americans are against legalised same-sex marriage.

Pew, who have been polling Americans on the issue of same-sex marriage since 1995, said that this is the first time such a result has occurred.

While more Americans overall still oppose gay marriage than support it, only 48 per cent of those asked opposed it, in a poll conducted between July and September this year. In last year’s poll on the same issue, 54 per cent were opposed.

Results were also noted to differ wildly along age, political and racial lines, with 53 per cent of those born after the 1980s being in favour of same-sex marriage and only 29 per cent of those born between 1928 and 1945 feeling the same.

For Democrats, the figure was 53 per cent in favour, whereas the Republican figure came in at only 24 per cent. White Americans were apparently divided evenly over the issue, while black Americans opposed the legislation by a much wider margin.

One issue on which the American public were fairly consistent on was the subject of LGBT people serving in the military. Support for said issue has remained “fairly stable” over the years, said Pew, with sixty per cent being in favour of openly gay and lesbian soldiers serving in the US military.