How successful was British foreign policy from 1945-64?


An essay plan for the following question:

How successful was British foreign policy from 1945-64?

Step 1: Split the question into different foreign policy aims:

  • Maintain good relations with US
  • Defeat Communism
  • Integrating within Europe
  • Maintain world power status
  • Maintain Empire and Commonwealth

Step 2: Think of failures and successes for each aim. Here's an example for relations with the US. I've expanded on each point, but in the exam you'll only have time to jot down some key words before you start writing your essay. 

Maintain good relations with US:


  • After WW1, Britain joined intergovernmental organisations in Europe, e.g. Brussels Treaty Organisation in 1948 to show the US that they were a worthwhile ally and keep them in Europe. The Brussels Treaty was welcomed by President Truman.
  • Britain was economically damaged following the war. The US provided Marshall Aid, which helped Britain get back on her feet - this showed that the US were a crucial and beneficial ally, and proved that the UK and US had a strong relationship.
  • Thatcher maintained a 'special relationship' with the US. She got on well with Reagan due to the anti-Communist views they both held. This worked to Britain's advantage, as the US provided


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