FRESH funding has been secured to develop a “world-class long-distance” walking route through southern Scotland.

Some £4.5 million will be given by South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE) for the Destination Tweed project which will see the creation of a 113-mile trail along the River Tweed from Moffat to Berwick-upon-Tweed.

This follows the scheme getting nearly £3m from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

READ MORE: The best things to do in Dunfermline - Scotland's newest city

It is hoped that the new walking trail will provide an economic boost to the area, while also offering environmental benefits along the river.

The most recent funding package gets the project one step closer to delivering its aim of delivering £25m in investment overall.

Led by the Tweed Forum, Destination Tweed is a Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal project and has received support from the Scottish Borders Council.

SOSE chair Prof Russel Griggs said the trail would benefit several areas along its path and bring “long-term benefits”.

Luke Fisher, Destination Tweed project manager, said the river was "famed across the world for its salmon fishing, historic houses and castles, literary connections and wonderful natural environment".

He went on to say he hoped the trail would become an asset to Scotland’s tourism industry.

Leader of the Scottish Borders Council Euan Jardine said: "This cross-border project aims to maximise the positive impact that the River Tweed can have for communities along its banks, whilst at the same time ensuring that the river and its immediate surroundings are also protected and enhanced.

"This will deliver benefits to communities, local business, residents, visitors and landowners as well as supporting nature and biodiversity in the river corridor from source to sea."

While a full business case for the project is currently being finished up, Jardine said it now had “significant momentum”.

Scottish Business Minister Ivan McKee also welcomed the new funding package, adding that it would help boost tourism and bring “sustainable growth”.