British national pride has dampened down over the last 10 years and is likely to continue to decline, in part due to cheap air travel and meeting international students at university, a study shows. Researchers found younger people, who are more likely to have attended university and travelled abroad frequently; feel less pride in being British than older generations. The study also found that Britons as a whole are much less likely than other nations to express pride, which was put down to being ‘reticent about overt flag-waving patriotism’. The findings emerge from a study of data from the British Social Attitudes survey. Researchers examined responses to questions about patriotism in 2003 and 2013 to see whether views had changed over time. They found overall levels of pride remained the same, at 82 per cent. But when that figure was broken down, they found the extent of pride had dropped. In 2003, 43 per cent said they were ‘very proud’ of their nationality, while 39 per cent said they were only ‘somewhat’ proud. But in 2013, only 35 per cent said they were ‘very proud’ with and 47 per cent saying they were somewhat proud. The study also found the older people were, the stronger their feelings about Britain appeared to be. For example, 66 per cent of those aged 75 and older said they were ‘very proud’ of being British, compared with just 20 per cent of those aged 18 to 29. In addition, 85 per cent of those aged 75 or older agreed that they would rather be a citizen of Britain than any other country, compared to just 45 per cent of 18 to 29 year-olds. The report’s author, Ian Simpson, claimed one of the reasons could be that older generations’ sense of ‘Britishness’ links back to ‘memories of the war or post-war years, when national pride might have been boosted by the shared experience of adversity’. Simpson: ‘Younger people’s views of the world are shaped by different experiences, including the wider availability of budget travel and, perhaps as a result, a greater exposure to other countries and cultures from a younger age.’ He said younger generations’ understanding of what it means to express ‘national pride’ may also have been influenced by the British National Party, which may for some have more negative connotations than the ‘nationalism’ of the post-war years. ‘Equally, it is possible that people’s sense of national pride simply increases as they get older. ‘However, if it were simply the case that feelings about being British grow stronger with age, we would have expected that the level of pride in and attachment to Britain would have either stayed the same or even increased over time, given that overall the profile of the British population is getting older,’ he said. ‘These findings do suggest that part of the reason for declining pride over time is that older generations – with higher levels of pride – are being replaced by younger cohorts who are less inclined to feel “very proud” to be British. 'If this trend continues then we would expect to see pride in British identity continuing to decline at a gentle but significant level.’ The study, commissioned by Tetley Tea, also found that women were slightly prouder of being British than men in both 2003 and 2013. But as a whole, Britons were less likely to express pride than other nations. Of 32 other countries included in the 2013 International Social Survey Program, 12 were less proud than Britain and 20 expressed more pride in their countries. People in Germany were least likely to say they were ‘very proud’ of their nationality, while people in the Philippines were most proud. The study also noted a link between university education and lower levels of patriotic feeling. Prof John Curtice, a leading expert on public opinion, told the Telegraph said: ‘I think there are two things about younger people today: the first is that more of them than in any previous generation are exposed to a university education. ‘Universities themselves are quite international - they constantly have that international perspective in many respects and also just encourage people to be a little bit critical about the world. ‘The second thing obviously is that today’s younger generation expects to be able to go to Barcelona or Berlin or Warsaw, and most have experience of doing that. ‘They are living in a world in which information and communication is global: once upon a time, you might have had a pen pal in Spain; now you can talk to them on Skype, if you can get over the language barrier - it creates a more cosmopolitan perspective.’ The British Social Attitudes is described as the most authoritative source of trend data on the views of the British public. It has been carried out annually since 1983. Interviews are carried out face-to-face with respondents aged 18. It takes place in the summer and autumn each year.