LABOUR has identified eight key marginal seats it hopes to steal from its political rivals in order to win a majority in next month's Assembly elections.

First Minister Carwyn Jones said his party has seen its membership increase by 10% in the principality within the past 12 months - and was pleased with a recent opinion poll which put Labour well in front of Plaid, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats.

But the Bridgend AM and father-of-two insisted Labour would not be complacent and would "stand up for Wales’’ in the face of looming cuts from the UK Government in Westminster.

He admitted May's election was likely to be a close-fought encounter and his party was hard at work planning its campaign as well as meeting its target of winning a majority of 31 seats.

He said: "We know that the opinion polls that have come out recently are favourable to us, but we see them no more than a base on which we can build. We are far from complacent.

"We know that not a single vote has yet been cast in this election - the vote will be close.

"It will be a close race to the finish in many important constituencies.’’ Speaking at the first of Welsh Labour's assembly election press conferences - held this morning at Transporter House, Cathedral Road in Cardiff - Mr Jones highlighted eight areas Labour are looking to take off the hands of the Tories, Plaid and the Lib Dems.

They were Preseli Pembrokeshire, Clwyd West, Llanelli, Blaenau Gwent, Carmarthen West, Cardiff Central and Cardiff North.