Figures obtained by the Daily Express expose the true scale of Britain’s savings crisis.

They show a quarter of us are not putting away enough money for the future, while almost a third of those aged 45 to 54 have made no start on their nest egg.

Experts estimate that pensioners will need an income of £20,000 a year to enjoy a comfortable, no-frills retirement.

That means accumulating a £400,000 pension pot.

But the statistics show the majority will fall woefully short of this target.

It means millions will be forced to rely on the State pension, currently £113 a week.

Last night David Harrison, managing partner of financial services firm True Potential, said: “Unless things change dramatically we will return to an age when people did not retire at all – they died working.

“When I left school in the late Sixties I was confidently told my State pension would give me a quarter of my average earnings. That’s not going to happen ever again.

“The crux is we don’t save anywhere near enough.

“We need to grab people by the scruff of the neck and tell them that, regardless of what amount they have in their pension pot, it’s not likely to be near enough.”

The average employee saves just £2,338 a year.

Over a 45-year working life that would amount to a pension pot of £105,228, providing a retirement income of £5,261 a year.

For those retiring in 15 years’ time the £400,000 currently required will rocket to £507,500 based on annual inflation remaining at 1.6 per cent.

If inflation rises, as is likely, then workers hoping for a £20,000 annual income when they retire in 2029 would need to accumulate a pot nearer £600,000.