SNP councillors have threatened to report a Conservative representative to the police amid allegations of racism.

The row on Stirling Council centres around allegations of racism, bullying and misconduct by former provost Douglas Dodds – a Conservative who was handed the top council role after striking a deal with Labour.

Dodds resigned as both provost and a councillor in November 2023 citing “personal and health reasons”.

However, emails obtained by SNP councillor Gerry McLaughlan through freedom of information laws showed the Tory had been at the centre of allegations of racism just one week before he left.

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The SNP group in Stirling said the emails showed “an internal investigation was pending over alleged misconduct in office, including questions over gifts, potential abuses of hospitality, and alleged racist behaviour”.

In heated exchanges during a Special Council Meeting last week, an SNP motion urged councillors across the chamber to support a formal referral to the Ethical Standards Commissioner.

However, Labour and Conservative councillors voted to protect the former Provost.

McLaughlan said: “It’s truly sad it has come to this.

“Referring these allegations to the police is the least we can do to demonstrate Stirling has no time for racism or bullies.”

Stirling SNP group leader Scott Farmer said: “These are truly serious allegations – the thought that anyone may have lost their job at our council due to racism or discrimination makes my blood boil.

“Tory [group] leader Neil Benny did nothing as the Provost he voted in made a mockery of the title and public office.”

He added: “Once again, Labour and the Tories have closed ranks to protect one of their own. SNP Councillors cannot stand by and condone this sort of behaviour, and we trust communities across Stirling will be rightly appalled.”

The Scottish Tories have been asked for comment.