Brighton's Royal Sussex County Hospital is still "incredibly busy" after declaring a "critical incident".

But hospital bosses said that after urging patients to stay away and cancelling some non-emergency operations and clinics they had managed to prevent patients sleeping in corridors last night.

The city's main hospital was able to discharge 99 patients today - but another 292 arrived in accident and emergency.

A spokesman for Brightonand Sussex University Hospitals Trust said: "The measures we put in place have made a real difference and created some space in both the County and Princess Royal hospitals.

"This has meant that despite another incredibly busy day with very high numbers of patients arriving at our Emergency Departments, we are in a much better position today than we were yesterday morning. At the Royal Sussex County Hospital, we discharged 99 patients yesterday and patients were seen promptly by a speciality doctor as they arrived in A&E. This meant that while we had 292 patients arrive – we usually have around 220 – we had no patients queued in the corridor overnight.

"At Princess Royal Hospital, we had a similar level of effort and discharged 38 patients – about a third more than usual, with 125 patients arriving at A&E and 35 emergency admissions. Today has seen a lot of patients arriving at our Emergency Departments, but it’s much better than it was yesterday morning. We are always open for patients who are seriously ill and our staff are working extremely hard to ensure every patient is treated safely and as quickly as possible. Following last week’s cold weather, like hospitals across the country, we have had an increase of seriously ill patients arriving at our Emergency Departments.

"Thanks to their incredible efforts yesterday at both the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton and the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath, we are in a much better position today, despite very high levels of patients coming in to our A&E departments. We would ask people to think about the care they need and use an alternative if appropriate, such as talking to their pharmacist, calling NHS 111 or using the NHS walk-in centre at Brighton Station."