A scheme to save British boozers from closing down has seen more than 100 pubs taken off the endangered list.
The Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) is helping communities to take over endangered pubs by getting them designated "assets of community value".
The number of pubs granted that status has reached three figures.
But high street retailers and property developers have warned against adopting a sentimental view of pubs that have fallen out of favour and said local businesses must reflect local needs.
Camra spokesman Neil Walker said: "It's a safeguard for the future, even if the pub is not in danger at the moment, and it puts communities in a strong position."
According to figures, the British pub is at risk of becoming extinct with closures soaring by nearly 50% to 26 a week in 2013. Across Britain, 213 million fewers pints were sunk in 2012 than in the previous year, according to the British Beer and Pub Association.
Competition from supermarkets which sell beer at heavily discounted prices is one factor, along with the smoking ban. On top of that, the rocketing value of property in London makes selling a pub site for residential accommodation highly attractive.
Under the "localisation" scheme to give more power to communities, planning applications to convert a pub are put on hold for six months to give locals the chance to raise cash to buy it.
But to get an asset of community value stamp, pubs must be well run and give to charity.
Closed-down pubs are often converted into shops. The British Retail Consortium said the high street should reflect what consumers want.
Tom Ironside, director of business and regulation, told IBTimes UK: "As the retail industry changes and develops, towns and cities will need to look at what their centres offer and how to meet the demands of shoppers and other people who use them.
"Vibrant shopping is an essential component but some towns will also need to find ways to change uses of property to cultural, leisure, or different commercial uses, or on the periphery, residential."
The British Property Federation echoed the message but with a warning. Chief executive Liz Pearce told IBTimes UK: "It's absolutely right that communities have their say before an asset of community value closes or changes use.
"But there's also a question to be asked whether a community right to buy might be used to stifle and hold up legitimate redevelopment of a property that might be put to better use."