POOR roads and trains and traffic congestion is the number one issue holding Brighton businesses back, according to a new survey.

Coffin Mew found Brighton businesses were in a buoyant mood and predicting significant growth over the next 12 months.

Yet a poor traffic network and excessive congestion threaten to hold growth back, according to the firm’s inaugural Brighton Business Pulse survey.

South Coast law firm Coffin Mew, which opened its Brighton office in May 2015, surveyed business leaders across Brighton and Hove in early summer 2016 for their predictions, hopes and fears for the future of their business and their city.

The survey found 80 per cent predicting growth of between 10 and 50 per cent.

A further 40 per cent plan on hiring new staff, with an impressive 65 per cent planning on launching a new product or service.

Nick Leavey, partner and head of Coffin Mew’s Brighton office, said: “Our survey shows a business community confident and excited about their future prospects. Brighton has a highly educated and entrepreneurial workforce, with a large number of start-up and small businesses. It makes for a vibrant and attractive place to live and work.”

Yet there are frustrations; Brighton’s traffic congestion is the biggest bug bear, with 63 per cent saying it is singularly the biggest problem they face. A further 43 per cent believe that commercial rents are too high, with 20 per cent struggling to find suitable space.

Nick adds: “Better roads, more parking, an improved rail infrastructure, and more commercial office space are all needed to allow Brighton’s business community to continue to grow. This will be even more of a priority if the city is to attract larger and more internationally focused businesses.”

Brighton’s growing tech sector – dubbed Silicon Beach – continues to thrive and attract talent into the city. The proximity to great universities and a well educated workforce contribute to its success.

But as tech entrepreneur and founder of sports tech company Double Six Hassan Rajwani told Brighton Business Pulse, Brighton does need a tech champion. He said: “The one thing Brighton needs is a successful tech business that reaches out and inspires others to follow.”