SIX women have learned if their partners have a history of domestic violence under Scotland's embryonic Clare's Law.

New figures reveal police and other authorities have rejected most applications for such disclosures in a widely publicised pilot scheme launched last year.

The project mirrors a similar development in England named after a 36-year-old Clare Wood, who was killed by a serial abuser despite seeking police information about his past.

The Scottish pilot is due to be appraised next month. But women's groups have already given a cautious welcome to its early results.

Sandy Brindley, of Rape Crisis Scotland - many of whose clients are women sexually abused by partners or family members - welcomed the figures.

She said: "I think six is a big number and demonstrates that the scheme is working and has the potential to keep women safe."

Ms Brindley and other campaigners stress that Clare's Law was never intended to be a "be-all and end-all" for women's safety.

The new numbers were revealed by Chief Constable Sir Stephen House in a report to his watchdog, the Scottish Police Authority.

His force began its pilot project in Aberdeen and Ayrshire at the end of November 2014 with decisions on disclosures made by a panel that includes health, social worker and third-sector groups.

Sir Stephen wrote: "Police Scotland has received 33 requests, 22 of which have been through the decision-making process with six disclosures being made so far.

"The proof of concept is due to finish on 31 May this year; this will be followed by an evaluation with consideration for a quick-time national roll-out."

Marsha Scott, the new chief executive of Scottish Women's Aid, said the figures were "not surprising".

She added: "What is most important is not the numbers but what we are finding that this process is improving women's safety.

"I am happy there is an intention to gather some qualitative information."

The big issue for Women's Aid and other groups is what happens next after disclosure.

Campaigners want to know what support there is for women find out that their partner abusive past.

They also want to see support for those who have not been given the information - but whose application suggests they have concerns of their own.

Ms Scott said: "If if this scheme is immensely successful, it is a relatively marginal piece of work."

Most abusers are not on the radar of police and social services - so a disclosure is not a guarantee of safety.

Serial domestic abusers are facing increasingly stiff punishments.

Clare Wood - whose family was from Aberdeenshire - died in 2009 at the hands of partner George Appleton.

She had made several complaints about him to the police before her murder but he was still able to get in to her home and kill her.