A £10million feasibility study into expanding the Borders Railway to Carlisle is due to get "underway imminently".
Penrith and the Border MP Dr Neil Hudson discussed the plans at Parliament with Scotland Minister, John Lamont.
There have been calls for the service to be extended past Tweedbank to Carlisle taking in towns and villages including Longtown, Hawick and St Boswells.
The UK government has allocated £10million for a feasibility study into expanding the line which is due to get "underway imminently" with talks already taking place and campaigners increasingly optimistic about the future of the project.
Speaking following his discussion in the House of Commons, Dr Neil Hudson MP for Penrith and The Border, said: “I thank the Minister for his ongoing support with this vitally important issue for both of our constituencies which straddle the Border region, as well as the wider benefits for the UK.
"We are seeing progress but, this must progress full steam ahead if we are to properly deliver for the people of both Northern England and Scotland.
“Connectivity challenges, both physical and digital, are some of the biggest barriers to economic, educational and social prosperity to the people of rural Cumbria. I will continue to make this a cornerstone of my work representing the brilliant communities of Penrith and The Border.”
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