As many as one in five pub tenants have given notice to quit as takings slump below break-even point because of the bad summer weather and the smoking ban. Les Fuller, 60, who has spent 22 years in the trade and runs the Seven Stars in Bury, Lancashire, says takings dropped about £1,000 a week after July 1 and he would have been bankrupt within 12 months. He now fears the community pub will have vanished within five years. John McNamara, of the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII), believes that would be fatal for village communities and the economy as a whole. The 47,000-member institute has been receiving 4,000 calls a month from tenants with financial and legal problems. Jim Clark, of JD Wetherspoon, said that although beer consumption was falling while dining was the growth area, there was still a place for "drinkers' pubs". But he admitted that times were hard for those groups with tenanted premises and said it was no surprise that many tenants, facing huge increases in costs, were fighting to survive. The Mail on Sunday (Financial Mail) 02/09/07 page 3