Diplomat Richard Hannay returns home to London, only to become inadvertently embroiled in the death of a British spy investigating the head of an organisation planning to sell the secret of a British ballistic missile. Hannay flees to Scotland to escape the police and tries to complete the spy's mission.
There have been four film or television adaptations of The 39 Steps – three of them have filmed in the region. The most famous is Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 version which includes a scene of Hannay fleeing over the Forth Bridge. This scene is not in the novel yet appears again in the 1959 version directed by Ralph Thomas. A 2008 adaptation for the BBC starring Rupert Penry-Jones as Hannay did not feature the Forth Bridge, but did film in West Register Street in the east end of Edinburgh as well as Hopetoun House, a stately home in South Queensferry, and the Bo'Ness & Kinneil Railway.
About the Forth Rail Bridge
The Forth Bridge is a cantilever railway bridge over the Firth of Forth in the east of Scotland, 9 miles west of Edinburgh City Centre. It is considered an iconic structure and a symbol of Scotland, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the location of the bridge and other The 39 Steps film locations in the map below.