GWENT’S new police and crime commissioner Jane Mudd paid an emotional tribute to her granddaughters as she became the first woman to hold the post. 

Victory for Labour in Gwent, and the party’s South Wales candidate Emma Wools, meant the pair became the first women elected as police and crime commissioners in Wales. 

When the Newport City Council leader’s victory was announced at the Gwent count, at Caerphilly Leisure Centre, she paid tribute to outgoing commissioner, Labour’s Jeff Cuthbert, who is retiring, before making a special mention of her granddaughters. 

She said: “To my granddaughters; Granny has made history today I’m the first woman ever to be elected police and crime commissioner in Gwent.” 

Speaking afterward Ms Mudd said she intends to remain as a city councillor for the Malpas ward and though she will step down as the council leader said residents shouldn’t expect major changes at the Civic Centre. 

“I will continue to represent the people of Malpas and will stay on for the time being,” said Ms Mudd when asked if she will remain a city councillor after she steps down as leader ahead of its annual general meeting in May. 

Members of the ruling Labour group on the council will elect a new leader who will be nominated at the AGM as the council leader. 

“Any new leader will want to establish themselves in a role but you need to remember the Labour administration in Newport was elected on a manifesto, and made commitments to the people of Newport, and two years in at least 60 per cent of those manifesto commitments continue to be delivered,” said Ms Mudd on the upcoming change at the top of the council. 

She also said she had highlighted her election as a woman as “it is of great significance in terms of the equality agenda. 

“It demonstrates to the public there are real opportunities for women and I think it brings a different perspective to leadership.” 

Ms Mudd said her granddaughters are aged five and one and while she doesn’t believe girls at that age believe their sex will hold them back it is still an issue: “We have made great progress but it’s really important we continue to show young girls, and young boys, there are opportunities for everybody and they are equal opportunities.” 

The councillor will become the new commissioner next Wednesday, when she signs the pledge of impartiality, but said she looks forward to getting started on a plan setting out the force priorities. 

“Work needs to start on the police and crime plan, the team have worked hard gathering the evidence base for that, and I’m keen to get out and talk to groups who have been asking me what my plans are and going back to them and finding out more about their lived experiences.” 

South Wales Argus: Jane Mudd made an emotional tribute to her granddaughters and outgoing PCC Jeff Cuthbert from the podium.Jane Mudd made an emotional tribute to her granddaughters and outgoing PCC Jeff Cuthbert from the podium. (Image: LDRS)

On scandals that have plagued Gwent Police in recent years that included cases of misogyny and racism Ms Mudd said she wants the public to “understand the PCC is there to represent them”. 

But she said they should also be reassured action has been taken in Gwent Police: “There has been high profile issues but we also need to take into account the fact they has been media and publicity it means action is being taken to address them.” 

READ MORE: Gwent police and crime commissioner results

Gwent Chief Constable Pam Kelly, who will be retiring later this year, attended the count and in a statement said she wanted to welcome Ms Mudd into the post on behalf of all officers and staff. 

She said: “Her previous experience in public service will be invaluable in scrutinising us and holding this police service to account all the while ensuring the public, especially victims of crime, feel heard. 

“The PCC’s responsibility is to provide a sustainable budget for the force so that we can deliver an emergency service for our public. However, it is also important, especially during these very challenging times, that we demonstrate through our shared role as custodians of frontline policing, our support and appreciation for the outstanding staff who every day save lives and protect our communities.”