Storm-tossed travellers endured much misery today, with a leading holiday airport bearing the brunt of passengers' festive fury.
For much of the morning there were no train services to or from Gatwick airport in West Sussex following a night of widespread storms that caused chaos on roads and rail and left 150,000 homes without power.
Then when passengers finally reached Gatwick they found that a power outage at the airport's North Terminal had led to flight cancellations and long delays.
Passengers took to Twitter to vent their frustration, complaining of a lack of information and then of inaudible announcements and luggage problems.
By late morning some train services were operating to and from Gatwick as conditions eased. But Scotland and Northern Ireland were warned to expect high winds.
And although Christmas Day was expected to be clear of storms, the bad weather was forecast to build up again, with storms expected on Friday.
A number of train companies were unable to run any early-morning trains and when services did eventually start they were subject to delays and cancellations.
Rail industry body the Rail Delivery Group said that the s trong winds had damaged overhead wires and brought down more than 80 trees on to lines. In addition some parts of the network had been flooded overnight.
On the roads, many major routes were flooded or blocked by fallen trees, with Kent, Hampshire, Surrey, Sussex and Cornwall among the affected counties.
In Dorset fire crews had to rescue 25 people trapped in their cars by flood water. The storms have so far claimed four lives and t he Environment Agency has issued scores of flood warnings across all of England and Wales,.
The Energy Networks Association which represents power companies across the UK, said the worst-affected areas for power problems were Kent, Surrey and Sussex.