The iconic Waverley Paddle Steamer will return to operation next summer after more than £2million was raised for essential repairs.

The 70-year old ship, much-loved for trips 'doon the watter' in the Clyde and up the Argyll coast, was unable to sail last season. 

A fundraiser was set up after it was announced seven months ago that the famous ship would not operate this year.

READ MORE: Waverley appeal tops £2m as bid to save paddle steamer nears target

Since then, more than 8000 individuals, along with the Paddle Steamer Preservation Society, several trusts and the Scottish Government have all donated - reaching the £2.3million target. 

Waverley’s new boilers are currently being built by Cochran’s Ltd in Annan and are due to be completed in February.

The work required on the ship will involve the removal of the iconic twin funnels to allow access to the boiler room.

Waverley Excursions General Manager, Paul Semple, commented, “Thanks to the fantastic generosity of so many people and organisations we are now able to push ‘full ahead’ with Waverley’s boiler refit which will be the most substantial refit since her rebuild was completed back in 2003.

"I would like to thank everyone who has donated to the appeal and supported our efforts to save the last seagoing paddle steamer in the world.”

“The trustees of the Waverley charity believe that ongoing charitable giving must now form a greater part of Waverley’s long-term operational survival to ensure she remains in service.

READ MORE: Fund to save the Waverley gathers steam with £1m boost

"We are deeply grateful to all those who have helped this year, and in the months and years ahead, will ask those who care and who are able to help, to add Waverley to their permanent thoughts.”

Waverley will be moved from Glasgow to Greenock, under tow in January, where the major “open-heart surgery” will take place.

The full works are expected to take around four months to complete allowing Waverley to undertake her regular cruises around the west of Scotland, the Mersey, Bristol Channel, South Coast and the Thames in 2020.