The Green party in Brighton and Hove could be unseated from power at the next local election according to a new poll.

In an extensive survey of more than 1,000 city residents, Green support would drop by a third from their 2011 triumph if elections were held today.

Labour are set to be the big beneficiaries, gaining 38% of the votes and potentially overall control of the council if the results were repeated throughout the city in May 2015.

Council leader Jason Kitcat said the poll had some positive news in the details and his party just needed to “communicate their successes” better to voters.

He denied that it was the council’s “unpopular” transport policies that were losing the party’s support.

He said: “The introduction of 20 mph has had more petitions and more letters in support than any issue in the last decade of the council.

“It’s not fair to say they are unpopular, it is just that there are strong views on both sides.

“Year on year we are nominated for national and international awards for our transport policy so the substance of what we are doing is right, it’s just how its communicated maybe needs to be improved.”

The licence fee-funded poll produced by ComRes for BBC South East revealed if local elections were held now, Labour would gain the largest proportion of votes with 38% ahead of the Conservatives with the Greens in third with just 21% of the vote.

From the 2011 elections Green votes have dropped by 12%, there has been a 4% drop in Conservative votes and a 6% increase for Labour.

UKIP would also make substantial gains with their support jumping up 8% to 9% if the city went to the polls tomorrow.

One in five of those surveyed said their voting decision was influenced by policies on road use, transport and parking.

More than half of those surveyed said the Green-led council’s performance had been poor while 43% said their performance had been good.

The current administration was praised for making the city a nice place to live, that was safe and for running leisure centres, youth clubs and libraries well.

But two thirds also said the council’s transport policies were unsuccessful while more than half considered the direction of planning and availability of housing to also be unsuccessful.

Conservative leader Geoffrey Theobald said: “The results are no surprise to us.

“We know the Green party is in disarray and these results are exactly the same thing that people are telling us on the doorsteps, that they voted Green last time to give them a chance but they won’t be doing it again.”

Commenting on his own party’s loss of support compared to 2011, Coun Theobald said: “There are some UKIP voters in the poll but we expect them to come back to vote Conservative come election time.

“As we get nearer the election, as the economy improves and as people begin to see more benefits, I am very confident our percentage will move up.”

Councillor Warren Morgan, leader of the Labour and Co-operative Group on the city council, said: “It shows we are right to listen to residents and to campaign for sensible policies which deliver on jobs, homes and schools in the face of huge Conservative government cuts to council funding.

“Voters have clearly said they want the Greens out and a sensible approach to transport and parking issues.”