Prime Ministers who had the shortest stays in 10 Downing Street since the Second World War- including Boris Johnson
Liz Truss has become the UK’s serving Prime Minister in the post Second World War era
Liz Truss has left her role as the nation’s Prime Minister after just 44 days. The mini-budget she and her former chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng laid out has been almost completely reversed, and the Prime Minister has since dismissed Kwarteng and replaced him with Jeremy Hunt.
Many of Liz Truss’ predecessors have endured short stays in the hot seat, but with pressure already starting to build it appears she has a good chance of picking up the unwanted title of the PM with the shortest tenure since the Second World War.
Here are the five Prime Ministers since the end of the war who resided in 10 Downing Street for the shortest time- including the man Liz Truss replaced earlier this year.
5 Theresa May - 3 years and 12 days
Theresa May found herself in Number 10 following the resignation of David Cameron in the aftermath of the Brexit referendum result. May led the Conservatives to a narrow victory in the 2017 General Election and stepped aside following mounting pressure on her position in the summer of 2019.
4 Boris Johnson - 2 years and 362 days
Prime Minister through the biggest health crisis to hit the UK in a century, Johnson was PM for just shy of three years. He replaced May as PM in 2019 and won a landslide victory against Jeremy Corbyn in December, winning seats back from Labour that had been nothing other than red for decades.
His resignation paved the way for Liz Truss to replace him in the late summer of 2022.
3 Gordon Brown - 2 years and 319 days
The last Labour Prime Minister, Brown stepped up when Tony Blair resigned back in 2007. Previously Blair’s chancellor, Brown led Labour into the 2010 General Election the result of which was a hung parliament.
When Labour and the Liberal Democrats failed to form a coalition government, Brown asked Queen Elizabeth II to dissolve the government. Conservative Party leader David Cameron was invited to form a government which he did with the Lib Dems. Brown resigned shortly after as Labour leader.
2 Anthony Eden- 1 year and 279 days
Following in the footsteps of Winston Churchill, it can be argued that Anthony Eden had the biggest shoes any incoming Prime Minister had to fill.
Less than a year into his premiership, his opinion poll approval ratings had fallen from 70 per cent to around 40 per cent and his failings as Prime Minister were increasingly the talk of Whitehall and the press. Tired, stressed, overworked and in desperate need of a holiday, he became increasingly ill after a series of abdominal operations in 1953.
His handling of the Suez Canal crisis in 1956 proved to be his downfall and in January 1957, he resigned less than two years into his term.
1 Alec Douglas-Home- 363 days
The only post-war Prime Minister to fail to reach one full year as leader of the country is Conservative Alec Douglas-Home. During his short term as PM, President John F Kennedy was assassinated- meaning that he had official lines of communication with not one but two Presidents following the swearing in of Lyndon B Johnson.
Up against popular Labour leader Harold Wilson, Douglas-Home was defeated in the 1964 election. From 1970 to 1974 he served as Foreign Secretary in Edward Heath’s government.