ALVA residents are experiencing more than twice the level of debts as those living in other parts of Clackmannanshire.

According to statistics from debt specialists Carrington Dean, people dealing with financial difficulties in the Hillfoots town were £26,471 in debt on average.

That compares to an average of just £10,522 across the FK10 postcode which includes Alloa, Sauchie, Cambus, Tullibody and Clackmannan among others.

While average debts across much of Clackmannanshire have dropped by 42 per cent in the second quarter of this year compared to the beginning of 2018, Alva saw an increase of 44 per cent.

Average personal debts across both areas stood just above £18,000 at the beginning of the year.

The figures were compiled following a survey of more than 26,000 people across the country with personal debt referring to anything that is not protected by a guarantor or asset.

These include bank loans, credit cards, store cards, overdrafts, payday loans and more, but not mortgages or student loans.

Stephanie Chapman, managing director at Carrington Dean, said: “Spring and the start of summer can be an expensive time for people, with the added expenditure of booking holidays, purchasing summer clothing and starting DIY projects – summer spending commences a lot sooner than many people think, which could explain this increase in debt levels.

“The increasing reliance of borrowing money through pay day loans and credit cards is a worrying trend, especially if it continues in the next few months.”

While she may paint a worrying picture, Ms Chapman explained people are at least looking for assistance.

She said: “Although people are now coming to us with more debt, we should take comfort in the fact that they are accessing financial help in the first place.”