|BC205||Centenary of the Entente Cordiale with 2 stamps and London Flag postmark, unsigned||£30.00||Buy Now|
|BC205A||Centenary of Entente Cordiale, with London Flag stamp. Doubled with 2 French stamps & Louvre P/M||£40.00||Limited Availability|
|BC205A2||Entente Cordiale, with London Big Ben stamp. Doubled with 2 French stamps & Eiffel Tower P/M||£40.00||Limited Availability|
|BC205AS||Centenary of Entente Cordiale, signed by Chris Patten||£50.00||Buy Now|
|BC205AS2||Centenary of the Entente Cordiale, signed Chris Patten and Geoffrey Howe||£60.00||Buy Now|
|BC205AS4||Centenary of the Entente Cordiale, signed by John Major||£75.00||Buy Now|
|BC205AS3||Centenary of the Entente Cordiale, signed by Edward Heath||£100.00||Limited Availability|
|BC205AS7||Centenary of the Entente Cordiale, signed by John Major and Chris Patten||£125.00||Limited Availability|
Issue Date: 06/04/2004
Issue Name: Centenary of the Entente Cordiale
Producer: Buckingham Covers
2004 marked the Centenary of "cordial understanding" between Britain and France. To celebrate, both countries issued stamps together. As usual, when there is a joint stamp issue, Royal Mail helpfully offered a "Paris" postmark for the French stamps, which was applied . . . in Edinburgh! We weren't that convinced by a Paris postmark done in Scotland so instead, decided to give ourselves more grey hairs and stress by running between London and Paris on the actual day to get two genuine postmarks from both countries. This cover is available signed by Chris Patten, Lord Geoffrey Howe, Edward Heath or John Major.
Signed on 8th April 1904, the Entente Cordiale was an agreement between Britain and France to resolve a number of longstanding colonial disputes. It established a diplomatic understanding betwen the two countries, but did not bind either to any military undertaking in support of the other.
There were eight articles in the Declaration plus a further five secret articles concerning the two countries involvements in North Africa and Spain.
The French signed the agreement because they liked the idea of a strong ally in the face of German agression. Similarly Britain needed allies because Germany had begun to expand her naval strength in competition with Britain. Germany's reaction to the entente agreement was to test its practical strength by provoking a crisis in Morocco in 1905, leading to the Algeciras Conference in 1906. The Entente was extended in 1907 to include Russia, culminating in the alliance that formally took on the Central Powers during the First World War.
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Christopher Francis Patten, Baron Patten of Barnes, CH, PC is a British politician who served as the 28th and final Governor of Hong Kong from 1992–1997.
Richard Edward Geoffrey Howe, Baron Howe of Aberavon, CH, PC, QC, known from 1970 to 1992 as Sir Geoffrey Howe, was a British Conservative politician.
Sir Edward Richard George Heath KG MBE, often known as Ted Heath, was a British politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1970 to 1974 and Leader of the Conservative Party from 1965 to 1975.
Sir John Major KG CH is a British politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party from 1990 to 1997.