BRIGHTON and Hove has been named as the fourth least car dependent city in the country.

Access to buses and trains along with cycle and walking networks make the city one of the easiest to get by without a car, the Campaign for Better Transport (CBT) said in its latest report.

In its 2012 biannual report, the city was placed second – two places higher than in 2014. In 2010, its inaugural report, the council was ranked third.

This time round, the city was topped only by Liverpool, Manchester and London.

Councillor Ian Davey, lead member for transport, said: “It’s really good to see that we’re still being recognised as one of the top cities in the UK for helping residents be less dependent on cars.

“We’re competing with some big names, and we were beaten only by cities who have the powers and funding for their own transport authorities, like Transport for London.”

The report ranks cities across four categories: accessibility and planning, buses and trains quality and uptake, cycling and walking as alternatives, and driving and car use.

Brighton and Hove rated strongly on frequency and quality of public transport and accessibility.

However, it fell down on cycling and walking alternatives, despite a number of costly schemes.

Recent initiatives to make the city less car dependant include the introduction of 20mph zones across most residential streets, the redesign of Lewes Road with cycle and bus lanes and the recent reworking of Vogue Gyratory.

A spokesman for the campaign said: “Despite the city falling places, it is more the case of others doing better than Brighton slipping.

“The likes of Manchester and Liverpool have had long-term projects paying off recently and that has improved their standing greatly.”

Coun Davey added: “We clearly need to continue to work on improving safety on our streets to make walking and cycling better options for residents.

“Our work to reduce speeds, improve crossings and redesign dangerous junctions is already seeing the number of people killed and injured on our roads fall. But there is still much more to do.”