Keir Starmer applauded after speech in first Cabinet meeting after Labour General Election landslide

Prime Minister Sir Keir Starmer and his wife Victoria outside No 10 Downing Street
-Credit: (Image: Gareth Fuller/PA)

Sir Keir Starmer told the first gathering of his new Cabinet in Downing Street: “Look colleagues, it is absolutely fantastic to welcome you to the Cabinet, our first meeting.

“And it was the honour and privilege of my life to be invited by the King, His Majesty the King yesterday to form a government and to form the Labour Government of 2024.

“And now we hold our first Cabinet meeting. So I welcome you to it.

READ MORE: King Charles' kind first words to Keir Starmer as Labour leader becomes Prime Minister

“We have a huge amount of work to do, so now we get on with our work.”

His words were met with loud applause.

Sir Keir was flanked at the Cabinet table by his deputy and Housing Secretary Angela Rayner and Cabinet Secretary Simon Case.

Buckingham Palace yesterday said the Labour leader "kissed hands" with the King on his appointment as Prime Minister but, in reality, the historic term is believed to refer to a handshake. Before the crucial moment, the two men were filmed as they met and the King initially told Sir Keir: "You must be utterly exhausted and nearly on your knees, quite a week by the sound of things."

The King chats to Sir Keir Starmer
King Charles III speaks with Sir Keir Starmer during an audience at Buckingham Palace, London, where he invited the leader of the Labour Party to become Prime Minister and form a new government following the landslide General Election victory for the Labour Party. Picture date: Friday July 5, 2024. -Credit:PA Wire/PA Images

The politician replied, "not much sleep" and commented about the transition of power from one Prime Minister to the next: "It's a very, sort of, quick change over."

The King added: "I know, to say the least, and having to get to grips with everything straight away must be quite exhausting."

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