The weather wreaked havoc ahead of Liz Truss’s first speech as Prime Minister, with heavy rain forcing the Number 10 podium inside and out again before the new Tory leader addressed the nation.
Journalists and members of parliament were left in limbo as the heavens opened while Ms Truss’s convoy drove through London towards Downing Street.
At one point, a bin bag was draped over the podium microphone.
Dozens of MPs also returned to the pavement outside Number 11, with many more further down the street.
Ms Truss arrived in Downing Street to cheers and was then able to speak immediately outside Number 10.
She took office on Tuesday after meeting the Queen at Balmoral, becoming the UK’s third female prime minister.
Thunder and lightning had earlier struck the country, while there were reports of more than 30,000 flashes of lightning recorded across the UK and northern France on Monday night.
A Met Office spokesman had earlier warned: “Going forward this week, the unsettled theme is continuing with some heavy showers possible for many through the week as low pressure dominates the UK.”