History of the Hippodrome


Former bingo hall is sold by Top Ten Holdings to an unnamed person

May 2007

Buyer revealed as Christopher Anthony, who wants to demolish the building

Jan 2008

Theatre Trust urges the council to save the building

Feb 2008

Fire starts in the old theatre, stage curtain prevents more serious damage

Feb 8, 2008

Mystery person offers to purchase and restore the theatre, but nothing comes.

Feb 25, 2008

Derby City Council issues urgent works notice, thousands of £s of repairs needed

Mar 10, 2008

Anonymous person sends pictures of the theatre's state to the Derby Telegraph

Mar 19, 2008

Workers start on the roof, causing it to collapse along with huge wall sections

Mar 28, 2008

The sight of an excavator before the work begins causes uncertainty, but the site foreman informs the council that it is a precautionary measure in case of collapse of the unstable Macklin Street wall.

Derby City Council take Mr Anthony to High Court in London to stop further work

Apr 2008

Mr Anthony is found to be linked to another controversial building project

Apr 8, 2008

Mr Anthony withdraws his app. to demolish the building, promises new plans

Jun 2008

City council weatherproofs the theatre. Never recoups the money from Mr Anthony

Aug 2008

Council serves enforcement notice, ordering Mr Anthony to repair the building

Sep 2008

They also reveal that they are considering prosecuting him for illegal demolition.

Firefighters are called to deal with flaming pile of rubbish at the building

Jan 2009

The fire was later said to be arson

Notice is withdrawn after Mr Anthony threatens an appeal

Jan 2009

The appeal would mean a long and costly battle for the council. They instead decide to work with him to find new uses for the building.

City council confirms legal action against Mr Anthony & contractor Wayne Watson

Mar 2009

The city council pursues legal action for the damage caused to the theatre.

The men plead not guilty to causing damage, at Derbyshire Magistrate's Court

Apr 2009

Mr Anthony's plans to turn the Hippodrome site into a car park with some housing are also submitted to the city council.

Hippodrome placed fifth on the 2009 Theatre Buildings At Risk Register

Jun 2009

Derby Hippodrome Restoration Trust is set up, aiming to get the theatre rebuilt

Sep 2009

Mr Anthony reveals to the Derby Telegraph he is putting the building up for sale

Dec 2009

His desired sale price is £1.2m, the sum that he had spent on the building.

Firefighters are called to deal with another basement fire, Macklin Street side

Feb 10, 2010

It is accepted Mr Anthony did not deliberately cause damage to the building

Feb 23, 2010

Charges against Mr Watson are dropped

Feb 23, 2010

Mr Anthony changes his plea to guilty of damaging the theatre

Feb 23, 2010

Charges against Mr Watson are dropped and it is accepted that Mr Anthony did not deliberately cause damage to the building. A probe into his finances is sentenced.