A barman is suing claiming he developed severe breathing problems because of passive smoking. The case in Nottingham could trigger multi-million pound compensation bills for the pub trade. If the barman wins, pubs might voluntarily have to ban smoking before the Government brings in its own ban. Mark Hastings, of the British Beer and Pub Association, said the industry was already trying to lower the impact of smoking on staff. Pubs in Ireland are believed to have lost 15% of sales after smoking was banned just over a year ago. But researchers at Imperial College London estimate that one current or former pub workers will die every week because of exposure to second-hand smoke. The Observer 27/03/05 page 5