Three Steps to the Gallows

Date: 1953
Director: John Gilling
Production Company: Tempean Films

Stars: Scott Brady, Mary Castle, Gabrielle Brune, Ferdy Mayne, Michael Balfour, Colin Tapley, John Blythe, Ballard Berkeley, Julian Somers
Location(s): London, Middlesex

Region(s): ,

Storyline:

American cargo ship Officer Gregor Stevens arrives in London to locate his brother, who unknown to him, has been convicted of a murder and is within three days of being executed. He meets Yvonne Durante, a night club singer and part-time smuggler, who helps him to prove his brothers innocence.

Additional Information:

All screen captures and uncredited NOW shots uploaded by Richard Lovejoy.

Also known as ‘White Fire’ (US Title).

 

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Thames side scene setting for ship Officer Stevens mooring - Tower Bridge from the South Bank.

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A very much changed scene except for Tower Bridge.

Gregor Stevens (Scott Brady) has leave from his ship to trace and meet up with his brother. He arrives at his hotel in the Cromwell Road, London SW7.

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Cromwell Road looking West with the mouth of Atherstone Mews just visible.

Having registered he leaves to trace his brothers whereabouts.

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Now a restaurant but still associated with an hotel.

Greg is followed by Crawson (Ronan O'Casey), one of the "gang".

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Now, a little more cared for.

Crawson follows Greg into Stanhope Gardens.

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Now.

Greg goes to his brothers last place of work in Regent Street. Looking towards Great Marlborough Street, W1 and timber framed Liberty's.

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A little busier these days.

He visits a "travel agents" on the corner with Maddox Street.

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Still a very desirable location to trade.

After roughing up Crawson in a dark passageway and "getting a light", the book matches suggest that there is a connection with the "Gay Mask Club". Almost the corner of Phillimore Gdns. and Kensington High Street.

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No such name over the door now.

Inspector Haley (Ballard Berkeley) agrees to take Greg to Wormwood Scrubs Prison to visit his brother.

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Pity the trees have been taken away.

After the visit Greg subsequently leaves a police station. John Tunstill identifies this as Petyward, off Sloane Ave. Also seen in Street Corner.

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No planted shrubs or easy access these days.

A better view of the police station as an attempt is made to run Greg down as Insp. Haley watches from the doorway at Petyward, off Sloane Avenue SW3. Identified by John Tunstill and also seen in 'Street Corner' and 'The Party's Over'.

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It is a long time since this police station saw such excitement.

  • 'Now' required

Having visited the apartment of Yvonne Durante (Mary Castle) a singer at the club with whom he is becoming friendly and believes is involved with "the racket", he starts to walk. Unidentified location.

He later enters a waiting cab to take him to his hotel. Passing Bourne and Hollingsworth department store on the corner of Berners Street and Oxford Street, W1

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The department store closed in 1983 and the building is now known as The Plaza Oxford Street.

Then turning into Great Portland Street with Cinema House, 225 Oxford Street in the background.

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At least it is still called Cinema House.

The taxi turns into a dark mews and the driver runs for it. Greg is beaten up and the "box of chocolates" that he stole from Yvonne's apartment is taken from him. Could it be one of the Stanhope Mews as they were filming nearby? An unidentified location but RL noticed that the footage also appears in 'Breakaway'.

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One of the few outstanding locations has at last been identified by Ray and Ron Glenister as Cornwall Mews South, London SW7. Replacing the Google Earth shot. (SJ)

  • 'Now' required

Greg is subsequently sent to a café for direction as to where he might go for further help. "Gerrards" and "C A Copley" opposite would suggest that it is Broadway, Southall, London UB1........or is it a studio set? Unidentified location.

  • 'Now' required

Greg is sent over the road from the café to a courtyard and a door. Unidentified location.

Greg persuades Insp. Haley to take him to his hotel where he has proof he is telling the truth and proof of his brothers innocence. Having been framed still further Greg gives the Inspector the slip. Cromwell Road looking East.

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Now.

Greg watches the Inspector depart and heads down Atherstone Mews, SW7

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A little smarter these days and as usual, a parked car in the way.

He climbs on to a wall to hide just as the police speed away. Always the convenient dustbin!

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Bricked up and extended.

Meanwhile Yvonne speeds off to Somerset House, Strand WC2 to see if secretary Lorna Dreyhurst (Gabrielle Brune) is married. St Clement Danes, "centre stage".

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One forgets how green London is these days.

Greg heads back to the travel agents that he believes is part of the "racket" framing his brother for murder. Regent Street again looking towards North from Maddox Street.

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The Queens Coronation decorations have long gone.

Having been beaten up in the Managers Office he is bungled out the back way. As yet an unidentified location but the pub at the back is the "Princess Victoria" and the sign to the right says "Leveson Cleaners - Works Dept."

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Peter Brown has quickly identified that the Princess Victoria, 25 Earls Court Road, W8 viewed from Pembroke Place, is still in business and has sent in this Google Image. (RL)

Yvonne follows closely behind down an unidentified street.

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The eagle eyes of Ron and Ray have found this one as well. Redcliffe Gardens, London SW10 looking north from Fawcett Street. A capture from Google Earth until a personal visit is made. (RL)

Greg manages to overpower his captors who crash the car and Yvonne arrives to collect him. PW discovered the junction of Harrington Road with Queen's Road in Southall, Middlesex. The street was also seen in 'Date with Disaster' and 'Miss Robin Hood'.

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The same corner. (PW)

Meanwhile Yvonne's father who can help unravel the plot is secretly kept on a houseboat guarded by Matt (Harcourt Curacao). tstg026 is just out of shot to the right. Chiswick Mall, W4

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The desirable riverside residences still very much in evidence.

Fuller, Smith & Turner, Brewery, Chiswick. Chiswick Lane South and Chiswick Mall, W4

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The vegetation has grown and the sign has gone but it remains part of the brewery.

After being located by the "heavies" Yvonne's father (Julian Somers) escapes and finds himself in Hammersmith Road, W14 and enters Olympia exhibition halls behind him.

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The exact angle required was not quite accessible.

Having learned that John is inside and being further pursued by the "heavies" Insp. Haley arrives with his forces.

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The facade now properly visible.

The mastermind of the diamond smuggling operation turns out to be Greg's brothers lawyer Arnold Winslow (Colin Tapley) who rushes to commit suicide in front of an approaching lorry. Blythe Road, W14

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No such excitement today.

But Greg gets to him in the nick of time so that he can face the consequences. It is supposed to be within meters of tstg029 but nothing equates. Robin Goddard identifies this as Hazlitt Road, London W14 looking south toward Blyth Road with the Old Post Office HQ building in the background. (RL)

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Almost the right angle given the parked cars. (RL)

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