Struggling families in North Ayrshire receive among the lowest school clothing grants in Scotland.

Hard-up parents claiming the uniform grant in North Ayrshire will receive up to £40 to put towards their child’s school clothes for the year, whilst in other areas, such as West Lothian families can receive up to £110 per child.

However North Ayrshire Council defended their grant awards saying they distribute thousands of school grants every year.

A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson said: “Last year, we invested more than £226,000 in our school clothing grants, providing more than 5,600 grants to children across North Ayrshire.

“We continue to invest significant resources into helping the most vulnerable families in our community.

“In our most recent budget, we took the unique step of committing £1.7million specifically to tackle poverty in our area, including £850,000 for a Poverty Challenge Fund, £200,000 for a Universal Basic Income Pledge, and £150,000 to develop North Ayrshire’s ‘Fair for All’ strategy.

“In addition to this, we have also set aside £3.16million for our Community Investment Fund, £122,000 for our Community Food Plan and £100,000 for participatory budgeting which will allow local people to have a direct say in funding local projects.

“We are also one of very few local authorities in Scotland to provide holiday school meals which serves up approximately 1,350 meals each week to young people during holiday periods.

“Reducing poverty and building a better future for our young people is at the very heart of what we are trying to do here in North Ayrshire and our school clothing grants form just one part of a wider programme towards achieving those aims.”

The Scottish Government said in 2009 there should be a minimum rate set with the figure proposed to be around £70.

However they have failed to implement it and eight years on, according to a report by the BBC, only 10 of the 32 councils in Scotland have met the recommendation.

Across the country the average clothing grant for eligible families is now £63.80 - with North Ayrshire Council falling far below that.

The average cost of a single child’s uniform is around £129, according to The Poverty Truth Commission.