A SCOTS council at the centre of a row over funding to the Orange Order is to provide thousands of pounds worth of assistance to other Loyalist parades.

The leadership of Labour-run Falkirk Council has blamed a "new position adopted by Police Scotland" over the handling of traffic issues at marches for its decision to cover the costs of a major Orange event in the town next month.

But it has now said that it will waive road closure fees, each of around £725, for all future parades in the Falkirk area until it comes up with a council solution.

READ MORE: Republican group's Glasgow march re-routed away from war memorial

In the next few months the authority will host of a number of parades by the Apprentice Boys of Derry, a loyal order and sister organisation of the Orange Order, four gala day marches, and Orange events in early July and August.

Police Scotland has said its position of not providing traffic management assistance free of charge has been in place since the force was created three years ago.

It follows a political row in Falkirk where the Labour administration awarded a 'community grant' of £1145 to the Loyal Orange Institution of Scotland Falkirk Branch to offset the costs of Temporary Traffic Regulation Orders (TTRO).

A letter from Police Scotland Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins from April outlining the force position on the traffic management of parades and the onus being on organisers to pay for it themselves was cited by the council for its decision.

Opposition councillors said the grant would reduce support for more "inclusive" events. Community grant funding in Falkirk has been cut by £110,000 to £94,000 this year.

The cost of TTROs have been enforced in a number of other areas, most notably Glasgow, for several years and has been part of Government guidance for a decade.

Council leader Graham Martin said: “The issue here isn’t that the request came from any particular organisation. The issue is that Police Scotland are effectively saying that they do not have powers to deal with traffic management problems at organised events. 

READ MORE: Republican march date clashes with Orange Order parade

"Given that this is a new position adopted by Police Scotland we are suspending the fees payable for TRROs until we can get a report from Officers on how this will work and how it is working across Scotland. 

"And we agreed to make a small grant to the organisers of this event to offset some of their extra costs.”

SNP councillor David Alexander said: "This isn't about the right to parade. It's about the proper use of a dwindling source of funding established to assist local groups put on events such as the Mariner's Day in Camelon and the Bo'ness Fair, events which are inclusive.

"We have no difficulty with this group receiving the benefit of saving of the £725 on the cost of the TTRO they would have had to pay if the previous report had not been approved as all groups will benefit from this but the award of a further grant is a step to far."

The council's SNP said: "The council policy on such awards also recommends rejection of applications from groups with a religious or political message and many would argue that the Orange Order was both."

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Police Scotland is required by the Scottish Police Authority to calculate the full cost recovery of any event which has police attendance. There are a wide range of abatements which can be applied, particularly for events which are community-based and are non-profit making.

READ MORE: Republican group's Glasgow march re-routed away from war memorial

“Police Scotland also works closely with event organisers to seek ways of reducing potential charges, such as suggesting alternative routes which do not require road closures, or using private stewards.

“If TTROs are required, these are administered and charged by the local authority.”