As it celebrates its sixth year at the West End's Criterion Theatre, producers of The 39 Steps have announced that it will embark on a UK tour next year.

The 39 Steps is based on the 1914 novel by John Buchan, and was adapted for the stage by Patrick Barlow. The, Olivier and Tony award-winning show will launch its tour on 19 January 2013 at the Cambridge Arts Theatre.

The comedy whodunit follows handsome Richard Hannay in his attempt to clear his name and discover the mystery of the 39 steps. The fast paced show features only four actors that portray 139 different characters in 100 minutes.

The 39 Steps, which started life at the Tricycle Theatre, is directed by Maria Aitken, with design by Peter McKintosh, lighting by Ian Scott, with sound by Mic Pool and movement by Toby Sedgwick. It is presented by Edward Snape of Fiery Angel and Tricycle London Productions with the West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Next year's tour will visit locations including Swindon, Northampton, Manchester, Glasgow, Bath, Sheffield, Brighton, Newcastle, Southampton, Edinburgh and Nottingham. For full dates visit

- Caitlin Jackson