Fears Scottish government will be forced to make huge cuts to pay for expensive policies

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon wants to increase health spending by £500 million more than inflation and double free childcare provision.

She also plans to protect police funding, free university tuition and more generous welfare spending.

This means budgets could face an average cut of up to 17 per cent over the next four years, with funding for councils slashed by as much as £1 billion by 2020/21.

Finance Secretary Derek Mackay, who will publish his draft Budget after Mr Hammond’s autumn statement in November, launched a renewed attack on Tory austerity.

But the report warned “bold and radical solutions” were needed, stating: “Business as usual is not an option.”

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