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The double o’ 007

Press Release   •   Oct 27, 2015 09:15 GMT

Four-year-old Mikey Bell – complete with pedal-powered Aston Martin – recreates a famous scene from the James Bond movie Skyfall in Glen Etive to launch VisitScotland’s new film locations guide.

The national tourism organisation’s book, which contains details of more than 100 films shot in Scotland over the decades, is published as Daniel Craig takes on the role of agent 007 for the fourth time in Spectre.

Set in Scotland: A Film Fan’s Odyssey, which will be available free of charge in VisitScotland Information Centres throughout the country, in branches of Waterstones and for download at from today (27 October 2015), capitalises on the growing trend of set-jetting. It is the first Scotland-wide film locations guide VisitScotland has produced.

Featuring everything from The 39 Steps, the 1935 Alfred Hitchcock film which includes the iconic Forth Bridge, through Chariots of Fire and Gregory’s Girl to the Harry Potter films and Prometheus, right up to 2015 movies Macbeth and Sunset Song, which were partially shot in Skye and Aberdeenshire respectively, Set in Scotland is aimed at visitors eager to follow in the footsteps of the film stars.

There are special sections on James Bond – the spy with the Glen Coe ancestry – and Bollywood, as well as honorary mentions for popular television series such as Outlander, Downton Abbey and Balamory.

It also details some of the more surprising places that Scotland has stood in for on the silver screen, including Turkey (From Russia With Love), San Francisco (Cloud Atlas), Vermont (Flash Gordon) and even the surface of Jupiter (2001: A Space Odyssey).

Specialist research and consultation was provided by David Martin-Jones, Professor of Film Studies at Glasgow University, including dedicated input with regard to Gaelic filmmaking, Bollywood location shoots and filming in Orkney and Shetland.

Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop, said: “Scotland’s towns, cities and countryside play their own show-stealing parts in the stories being told here for production firms across the world. VisitScotland’s new film locations guide details more than 100 films shot in Scotland over the last decades and provides an opportunity for us to showcase not only Scotland’s internationally renowned heritage but also the wealth of natural beauty that our country has to offer.”

Mike Cantlay, Chairman of VisitScotland, said: “The list of films and locations featured in Set in Scotland is not exhaustive, but the guide serves as a fantastic way to introduce visitors to our country’s many scene-stealing roles on the silver screen. It is a handy and fun way for people to enjoy a set-jetting holiday in Scotland, to follow in the footsteps of the stars and to find out why this country has inspired generations of film-makers.”

Professor Martin-Jones, who also provides the foreword to Set in Scotland, said: Scotland has a tremendous heritage as a film location. It has provided unforgettable settings for some of the most iconic moments in film history. This helpful guide will allow visitors to experience these memorable locales first hand, turning memories of the silver screen into reality.”

In June 2015, Scotland was voted Best Cinematic Destination by readers of USA Today in an online poll, while research shows that 40 per cent of visitors to the UK are inspired to visit locations after seeing them on film or on television.

Scottish locations to have benefited from their association with movies or television shows include:

  • Braveheart (1995) – the Wallace Monument in Stirling saw visitor numbers leap from 30,000 a year to nearly 200,000 in 1996.
  • The Da Vinci Code (2006) – Dan Brown’s 2003 novel had a huge effect on Rosslyn Chapel. Visitor numbers increased by 72 per cent, from 68,603 in 2004 to 118,151 in 2005. In 2006, following the release of the film directed by Ron Howard and starring Tom Hanks, visitor numbers reached 175,053.
  • Skyfall (2012) – the 23rd film in the James Bond franchise was great news for Glen Coe. Statistics from the National Trust for Scotland revealed that 114,298 people visited the region in 2013/14 - up 41.7 per cent on 2012/13.
  • Outlander (2014) – Doune Castle, near Stirling, which features prominently in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, doubled for Castle Leoch in the hit television series. From June to August 2015, Doune Castle saw the biggest increase in visitor numbers of all Historic Environment Scotland properties, with three consecutive record-breaking months and an overall rise in visitor numbers of 44 per cent, to 32,540.

To download Set in Scotland: A Film Fan’s Odyssey, go to


For further information or for more ‘movie recreation’ images, contact:; 0131 472 2409

Notes to Editors

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    • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
    • This will be supported by seven overarching strategies:
      1. Marketing: we will market Scotland and its outstanding assets to visitors from all parts of the world, including the promotion of Scotland to people living in Scotland       to visit different parts of the country
      2. Events: we will support the national events strategy and its delivery, and sustain, develop and promote Scotland’s international profile as one of the world’s foremost events destinations
      3. Internationalisation and International Engagement: we will utilise all our platforms to enable Scottish-based tourism businesses to better understand international       opportunities and market to a global audience and we will work within One       Scotland Partnerships to optimise the potential of Scotland’s Diaspora and our strategic partners at regional, European and global levels
      4. Customer Experience: we will provide information and inspiration to visitors both locally and globally via their preferred medium of choice
      5. Quality and Sustainability: we will provide support and advice to businesses, with the goal of improving the quality and sustainability of the tourism sector in Scotland. We will provide quality assurance to visitors through our Quality Schemes
      6. Inclusive Tourism: we will strive to make tourism in Scotland inclusive and available to all
      7. Working in Partnership: we will listen to and work with the industry, partners and communities to shape our offering and support
    • VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
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    • According to a recent Deloitte study, the tourism economy supports 270,000 jobs in Scotland in 20,000 diverse businesses. The same study calculates that the tourism      economy contributes £11 billion annually (direct and indirect impact, including day visits) and supports around 10 per cent of employment in Scotland. Almost 16 million tourists take overnight trips to Scotland.
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    Year of Food and Drink 2015

    • 2015 is the Year of Food and Drink, a celebration of Scotland’s natural larder and the role that food and drink plays in shaping our economic success.
    • Scotland generates over £2.5m per day through food and drink tourism.
    • A series of themed months will create an appetite for key areas of Scotland’s food and drink industries – from seafood and whisky to berries and high-quality meat
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