Welsh Labour continued its week of election success today, securing three of Wales' four police and crime commissioner (PCC) spots.

Incumbents Alun Michael and Jeff Cuthbert were re-elected in the South Wales Police and Gwent Police force areas, respectively.

Labour candidate Andy Dunbobbin will be the new PCC for the North Wales Police area.

The other contest, for the Dyfed-Powys PCC role, was won by Plaid Cymru candidate Dafydd Llywelyn.

The Welsh Conservatives saw all four of their candidates make it to the second round of counting, but ultimately each one fell short.

READ MORE: Police and Crime Commissioner elections: The who, what and why

Wales' PCC elections were due to be held last year but were postponed due to the pandemic and instead moved to May 6 this year – prompting a busy weekend for ballot-counters across the country.

What does a PCC do?

The PCC role was established in 2012, with police authorities seen as lacking a public profile. It was hoped a directly-elected PCC would lead to more people taking an interest in the governance of their local police force.

PCCs work with their chief constables to set local policing priorities and – by consulting with the public and other bodies such as councils and health boards – agree a local policing plan. The PCC holds the chief constable to account to ensure the force is working towards the agreed priorities.

Council tax is also affected by the role. While some police funding comes directly from the Home Office, it is up to PCCs to propose a policing 'precept' charge which is added to council tax bills and pays towards local policing.

Additionally, a small police and crime panel, with members appointed by unitary authorities in the force area, has a vital role in scrutinising and supporting each PCC.

READ MORE: Why your cross in the Police and Crime Commissioner box matters

Who are Wales' PCCs?

In the North Wales Police area, Labour candidate Andy Dunbobbin won defeated Tory rival Pat Astbury by 7,885 votes to become the region's new PCC.

Speaking in Connah’s Quay, where the results were announced, he said: “I take this role seriously. I understand I will be measured against my manifesto pledges by the people of North Wales.

“I’m very much looking forward to starting this work from now.”

Mr Dunbobbin is the only new PCC following this year's election. The North Wales post was vacated by the retiring Arfon Jones (Plaid Cymru), an outspoken PCC who made headlines from his work spearheading drug-dependency schemes to his views on the "totally unrealistic" portrayal of the PCC role in Line of Duty.

In Mid- and West Wales, Plaid Cymru Dafydd Llywelyn was re-elected PCC for the Dyfed-Powys Police area, seeing off nearest rival Jon Burns (Conservative) by a total of 96,488 votes to 77,408.

Mr Llywelyn worked in police intelligence before becoming a criminology lecturer at Aberystwyth University. He told our sister publication the County Times he was "extremely pleased" to win the contest and said he would build on his "strong track record" of listening to communities.

"Operational, front-line policing has and always will come before party politics," he added.

In the Gwent Police area, Labour's Jeff Cuthbert saw off the challenge of Tory candidate Hannah Jarvis to win re-election.

The former Senedd member has been a regular critic of Westminster cuts to police budgets, and following the election results he told the South Wales Argus the force's financial health was “something we are looking at very seriously indeed.”

He added: “If I don’t make sure that the chief constable has enough money for operational purposes then we’ve got a problem."

In South Wales, the final result was called in favour of incumbent Alun Michael, who was formerly first minister of Wales during the early years of devolution.