One in five adults will be relying on the state pension as their main income in retirement, according to a survey from UK charity Help the Aged.

The research comes ahead of the publication of the Pension Commission’s final report. The charity believes that the results of the study show a worrying level of ignorance about pensions with 22% of adults between 18 and 54 having no idea what the basic state pension is worth per week.

Attitudes towards the value of pensions are bleak. Most of the respondents (62%) felt that pensioner poverty has got worse in the last ten years, with 27% believing that half of all pensioners in the UK are living in poverty. The real figure is closer to a fifth.

Michael Lake, director of Help the Aged, said: This new research shows that pension provision is exceedingly poor among today’s workforce. This can be put down to the sheer complexity of the present system.

With just days before the publication of Adair Turner’s Pensions Commission report, the case for radical reform to secure a decent, simple and fair pensions system could not be stronger.