The Guardian newspaper had exclusive access to 10 Downing Street during Gordon Brown’s final moments as prime minister on 11 May. Ministers, including Lord Mandelson, waited with him for a call from Lib Dem Nick Clegg about a possible coalition.
When the call came – five days after the general election resulted in a hung parliament – silence fell on the room, the Guardian reported. Mr Brown was heard telling Mr Clegg that he could "not hold on any longer", and had to go to the Palace.
Mr Brown wrote letters to his successors as Douglas Alexander (left) and Ed Balls (right), soon to lose their ministerial jobs, looked on with adviser Alastair Campbell (seated).
Mr Brown’s wife Sarah and his sons John and Fraser entered the office as staff applauded the outgoing prime minister.
A box of framed photos and other belongings was packed as the end of Labour rule neared.
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