ELECTION fever gripped Gwent on Thursday as the overall voter turnout increaed by 4.2 percent.

Closely fought battles in Newport between Labour's Jess Morden and Liberal Democrat Ed Townsend in the east constituency and veteran Labour MP Paul Flynn and Tory Matthew Williams in the west, saw turnout increase 8 percent and 11.2 percent respectively.

34,448 people voted on Thursday in Newport East compared to 31,894 at the last election and 39,720 compared to 35,732 in Newport East.

Elsewhere in Gwent, Labour took back Blaenau Gwent, voter turnout was up by 19.6 percent from the last election in 2006 when Dai Davies took the seat in a by-election in 2006 after the death of Peter Law.

32,484 people voted in the area this time around compared to 27,165 in the by-election.

In Islwyn, turnour was up by 9.4 percent from 31,793 to 34,768 and Torfaen up by 4.7 percent from 35,979 to 37,686.

Monmouth MP Davied Davies doubled his overall majority when 46,626 voted this year compared to 45,894 in 2005, an increase of 1.7 percent.

In total 225,732 people voted this year compared to 216,616 in 2005 (excluding Blaenau Gwent by-election).