Maxwell’s Bar & Grill on Covent Garden’s James Street, is relocating to King Street after 25 years due to “unsustainable rent increases”.

Maxwell’s will close on 8 April and reopen on 10 April on the site currently operating as Joe’s Southern Table and Bar, also owned by Maxwell’s Restaurant Group. MCA understands that on option for the company is to move Joe’s into the former Muriel’s Kitchen site in London’s Old Compton Street, which it in talks to acquire.

The departure of Maxwell’s from James Street, has increased speculation that Wahlburgers, will take the empty site, with the company, which is owned by chef Paul Wahlberg in partnership with two of his brothers, actors Donnie and Mark, believed to be closing on a debut UK site in Covent Garden.

The new Maxwell’s will continue to offer the brand’s signature burgers, steaks, ribs, wings and iconic freakshakes.

Jim Robertson, group operations director Maxwell’s, said: “In an ever-changing London market, Maxwell’s Bar and Grill has stood the test of time but in the face of unsustainable rent increases, the group had to consider more viable business options.

”The opportunity to relocate to new premises allows us as a business to continue operating in Covent Garden as well as consider new opportunities across London.”

It said that Joe’s Southern Table and Bar would reopen in a new site, to be announced, in Covent Garden this May.

Last week, Maxwell’s hs launched a campaign to save its Roadhouse venue from eviction.

Landlord Capital & Counties (Capco) is seeking planning permission to develop part of the building by Westminster City Council and as such is seeking to refuse Maxwell’s a new lease.

The Roadhouse has traded for over 25 years in the basement of Jubilee Hall on The Piazza.

Brian Stein, founder of Maxwell’s Group, said:“I believe that Capital & Counties planning application for the premises is solely designed to remove Roadhouse as a tenant and from everything I have seen, they have no intention to implement any planning consent should it ever be granted by Westminster City Council in the terms of the application they have made. This would be in line with their overall strategy which has seen them gradually phase out independent retailers to make space for more upmarket brands and big chains”.

Stein claims that documents submitted to the court show that Capital & Counties plan to create a massive 15,000sq ft restaurant.