The survey from workplace pension provider NOW: Pensions showed that over one third, or 35pc, of Britons were not contributing to any kind of savings plan. This meant that people were turning to other options in order to supplement their income, or giving up on retirement altogether.

One in three, or 31pc, don't plan to give up work entirely once they reach retirement age. This figure rises to 41pc for the over 55s.

Two in five expect to take a part-time job in retirement to make up for the shortfall of their savings, while one in five, or 20pc, disillusioned Brits don’t expect to retire at all.

Only just under half, or 47pc, realise that the onus falls on them when it comes to ensuring that they have sufficient income in retirement, with 15pc still believing the state will fund their retirement.

To encourage them to save more, half of those asked said they would need reassurance of stable returns, and 43pc would need to have a guarantee their pension provider was trustworthy.  

Last month workers began to be automatically enrolled in workplace pension schemes under a new national programme.

Morten Nilsson, chief executive of NOW: Pensions, said: “Our research clearly shows that auto-enrolment is vital if we want to get people saving. With the current shortfall in pension savings, coupled with the fact that we are all living longer, there is a genuine risk that a large proportion of the population could face a poor future once they retire. Doing nothing is not an option anymore if people want to retire on a reasonable income.”

He added: “We are confident that the introduction of auto-enrolment will get people saving, some for the first time. We also hope that the new rules will dispel the ‘live now, save later’ attitude which is inherent in our society.

"Our calculations show that if an average earner saves into a cost efficient pension which has good investment governance then a contribution of just 8pc towards their pension each year for 43 years, along with the state pension, could give them about 42pc of their salary when they retire, and this is even higher for lower earners.”

Article from the Telegraph