Early last century the site was used by Cross & Blackwell to make the essential Ploughman's Lunch ingredient, Branston pickle. They vacated the premises in 1927 and the most recent resident was The London Astoria club, which was forced to close and was subsequently demolished as part of the Crossrail project. Once subterranean work has finished on the new station, above ground work on the Nimax building will commence. It is expected that this work will commence in 2017 with a 2020 opening expected. As well as a 350-500-seating theatre which promises no restricted views, the building will also contain office space and shops.
Nimax chief executive Nica Burns has stated: "Our new theatre won't compete with those already in London. It will be a different - very intimate - space, in a great location, where cutting edge shows can be performed."
The Nimax group was established by Burns and Weitzenhoffer in 2005 with the purchase of the Garrick, Apollo, Lyric and Duchess Theatres from Andrew Lloyd Webber. Weitzenhoffer brought the Vaudeville Theatre which he had purchased in 2001 into the chain, and earlier this month the pair added the sumptuous Palace Theatre to the fold, once again bought from Lloyd Webber.