Read transcripts of debates in both Houses
Produced by Commons Library, Lords Library and Parliamentary Office Science and Technology
Search for Members by name, postcode, constituency and party
Learn about their experience, knowledge and interests
Celebrating people who have made Parliament a positive, inclusive working environment
Four staff networks for people to discuss and consider issues.
Contact your MP or a Member of the House of Lords about an issue that matters to you
Find and register for Parliament's free events and training sessions
Take a tour of Parliament and enjoy a delicious afternoon tea by the River Thames
House of Commons has been shortlisted, voting is now open
Book a school visit, classroom workshop or teacher-training session
Access videos, worksheets, lesson plans and games
The outbreak of war in 1914 and the course it subsequently took was highly influenced by a complex web of alliances and agreements. This memorandum, written by former Prime Minister Arthur Balfour, illustrates Britain’s fear of Germany and the strength of its ties with Italy and Austria-Hungary created by the Triple Alliance in 1882. It was in light of this fear that Britain was persuaded to form agreements with France in 1904 and then with Russia in 1907, thus forming the Triple Entente. The three powers were united in their mistrust of German intentions regarding Europe and as Balfour notes in this memorandum regarding Britain’s agreement with France, they became obliged to offer one another mutual support in times of conflict.
Find out more about the Parliamentary Archives