THE costs of policing two Irish Republican marches in Glasgow were around £150,000 more than four Orange Order marches just a fortnight later, the Evening Times can reveal. 

Official figures released by Police Scotland under a Freedom of Information request previously disclosed two parades by Irish Republican groups in the city centre on September 7 cost at least £176,000.

Glasgow City Council pre-estimated about 100 people would join the Cairde Na Heireann march, with about 300 taking part in the Friends of IRPWA parade.

The marches were met with a large number of Loyalist protesters and a “significant deployment” of officers, including riot police, mounted officers and the force helicopter, were on the scene. 

During the second march, an officer was injured, needing hospital treatment after being struck by a flare thrown by protesters who attempted to disrupt the event.

Glasgow Times: Police at the Irish Republican marchPolice at the Irish Republican march

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Police Scotland admitted it does not hold “full and comprehensive costs” for each march. Instead, the listed figure is “calculated on receipt of an initial parade notification.”

The force added: “Costs are calculated from the expected numbers of officers per parade based purely on size of parade and before any intelligence overlay is made.

“It is not updated once the intel [intelligence] overlay is applied, so increases or reductions of police numbers are not taken account of.” 

Two weeks after the scenes in the city centre, four Loyalist groups also held parades in Glasgow. 

But new figures, seen by the Evening Times, show the policing costs for those four marches were at least £26,000.

This works out around six times less than the Irish Republican marches two weeks previously. 

Glasgow Times: Assistant Chief Constable Bernard HigginsAssistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins

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The council pre-estimated about 800 people would join the Pride of Govan Flute Band parade, 120 would join the Drumchapel Orange and Purple District 57 march, 60 at the Springburn Campsie Apprentice Boys of Derry and 50 at the Independent Loyal Orange Order.

The council had intended to ban those marches, but said it was left in an “impossible position” amid fears violent scenes would erupt regardless.

It came after six Loyalist and Republican events were banned the previous week. 

Despite fears hundreds could turn out to protest, police said the event went without disruption and no arrests were made. 

Tensions over the marches had been rising after riot-like scenes in Govan on August 30.

Violent protests erupted that evening as Loyalist groups tried to stop an Irish Unity March.

Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins said: “The level of resources for each event was based on the threat level and intelligence, meaning the difference in cost. 

“I am satisfied we deployed a proportionate level of resources to police each event.”