As Sunderland, the North East and the UK prepares to remember our fallen heroes on Sunday November 12, a new survey has revealed that the majority of people in the region are unaware of how many of our armed forces troops have died in conflict since the Second World War.
More than 7000 have died since the war ended 72 years ago — in 1945.
The research, by the Forces Network, also highlighted over a third of North-Easteners are unaware of any of the conflicts which the British armed forces are currently involved in.
Ian Beckett, a professor of history at the University of Kent worked in partnership on the map.
The research also revealed that sixty-six per cent of people in the North East think schools should teach pupils more about conflicts that our armed forces have been involved in since the Second World War.
Professor Beckett added:
Rusty Fermin served for more than two decades in the forces, but is now an author and most recently, the technical advisor to the biographical action film 6 Days.
On a national level, it was revealed that 85 per cent of Brits do not know how many members of the British Armed Forces have died in wars and conflicts since the start of the Second World War.
The statistic jumps to 92 per cent when asked about the First World War – more than 90 per cent don’t know how many members of the British armed forces have died in wars and conflicts since 1918.
From the start of WWI to the end of WWII one million British personnel lost their lives.
More than a third are unaware of any of the conflicts which the forces are currently involved in.
However, more than half think schools should teach pupils more about conflicts after the Second World War.
British armed forces have been involved in more than 60 conflicts since 1945 – but 37 per cent of respondents were unaware of any conflicts the country’s forces are involved in currently.
Only 35 per cent of people were aware of the British involvement in the fight against so-called Islamic State.
Former Chief of Defence staff, Lord Richards of Herstmonceux GCB CBE DSO, said: “It is always important, especially at this remembrance time of year, to think about those thousands of people who have given their lives for our country since the end of World War 2.
“I would urge the government to make the history of modern conflicts a compulsory subject in our schools to help youngsters better understand and respect the freedoms and lives they enjoy today.
“In truth, we don’t know where the next conflict will be but our armed forces stand ready for any eventuality.”
The survey has been conducted to mark the launch of the organisation’s Remembrance Map.
It identifies and commemorates both combat and peacekeeping missions, which the British armed forces have been involved in since the First World War, to help enable a greater understanding of the commitments made by our service personnel.