People who are disturbed by loud hooting on new trains are being asked to fill in noise diaries.

They have been sent forms by Brighton and Hove City Council which have to be filled in by the end of the month.

Once the council has the information about the pattern of disturbance to local people over a two-week period, it will seek legal advice before taking action.

It has already written to train operators Network Rail, the Strategic Rail Authority and the rail watchdog.

The problem is caused by new trains having louder horns than older models.

It has caused particular problems in the Highdown Road area of Hove, where trains hoot before entering a tunnel.

Goldsmid ward councillor Vince Meegan welcomed the noise diaries.

He said: "I'm noticing it now because we have the windows ajar during the night. I hear the early morning trains loud and too damn clear.

"I find the legal process exasperatingly slow. I also wonder why in the 21st Century it is necessary to sound a horn at all.

"It would make more sense to ring bells and flash lights inside the tunnels when a train approaches, rather than wake half the city up with this outdated cacophony."