Only one criminal record-holder was refused a window cleaning licence since the law change came into force in North Ayrshire.

After advice from police, North Ayrshire’s Licensing chiefs agreed that as window cleaners have access to properties they – like taxi drivers – should undergo proper checks.

Licensing chiefs received a total of 97 applicants since the change came into place in January last year.

Of the applicants 23 had criminal convictions with only one applicant refused.

Serious offences before the licensing committee included stalking, assault, assault to injury, assaulting a police officer and carrying an offensive weapon.

Crimes of dishonesty included fraud, domestic fraud, theft, perverting the course of justice and breach of bail.

One window cleaner was previously caught producing a controlled drug – with two done for possession.

Motoring offences included driving without due care and attention, disregarding the law on seatbelts, allowing someone to drive without a licence, driving without insurance, not having third-party insurance and driving or supervising driving while using a mobile phone.

One applicant was also convicted of using a loudspeaker in the street for the purpose of advertising entertainment, trade or business – with two applicants guilty of threatening or abusive behaviour (breach of the peace).

This was revealed following a Freedom of Information request, with any personal data identifying applicants exempt.

A spokesperson said: “Each applicant’s case has to be approached on its individual merits, so the fact that one person has been granted a licence with certain convictions does not mean that another person will get a licence with similar convictions.

“If an applicant has a criminal record it is likely that the application will be referred to the council’s licensing committee for a decision, rather than being decided by the clerk or other council officers.

“If the committee thinks it necessary, the decision can be deferred until the applicant has attended a hearing in person and spoken directly to the councillors on the committee and answered any questions they might ask.”