Those lucky enough to catch a glimpse of clear sky just after dawn enjoyed the spectacular sight of a partial eclipse of the Sun.
Between 8am and 9.30am it appeared to be missing a large chunk as the Moon passed between the Sun and the Earth.
Hamble, Hampshire: A partial solar eclipse was visible on England's south coast, as the moon covered the sun at around 8.10am. The majority of Britain had its view of the phenomenon obscured by cloud
Locon, northern France: The partial eclipse extended across much of Europe this morning. The greatest eclipse will occur over the city of Skelleftea in north-east Sweden, where the moon will block out almost 90 per cent of the sun
The dramatic sight could be witnessed in parts of East Anglia and the south coast of England, as well as across the globe.
But the majority of the country remained swathed in cloud, meaning the UK's first partial solar eclipse since August 2008 was hidden from view.
In London, where the eclipse ended at 9.31am, approximately 67 per cent of the sun was covered, although clouds obscured the event.
This compared to just under 70 per cent in Liverpool and Plymouth, while Glasgow reached 40 per cent and the Western Isles just 15 per cent.
Today's partial eclipse was visible across much of the Middle East, Europe, North Africa and central Asia.
It began in the skies over Northern Algeria, the first location to witness the phenomenon at 6.40am GMT.
Western Europe woke up to the sunrise eclipse as it extended across much of the content.
In Madrid, a little less than half of the sun's diameter was covered, whereas in Paris this coverage extended to 65 per cent.
The greatest eclipse occur later in the morning over the city of Skelleftea in north-east Sweden, where the moon blocked out almost 90 per cent of the sun.
In central Russia, north-west China, Kazakhstan and Mongolia, the phenomenon will take place at sunset.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING AN ECLIPSE OF THE SUN?
A solar eclipse takes place when the moon lines up between the sun and the Earth.
This casts a lunar shadow on the Earth's surface and obscures the solar disk.
During a partial solar eclipse, only part of the sun is blotted out.
A plane is silhouetted against the partial eclipse over the cloudy skies of Barcelona
The celestial event produces a dazzling sight over Dinslaken, Germany. The greatest eclipse will occur over the city of Skelleftea in north-east Sweden, where the moon will block out almost 90 per cent of the sun
A solar eclipse takes place in the skies over Studencice, Slovenia. Northern Algeria was the first location to witness the celestial event at 6.40am GMT
ECLIPSES TO COME IN 2011
June 1 - Partial solar eclipse across Siberia, northern Canada, and Greenland
June 15 - Total lunar exlipse across Eastern Hemisphere
July 1 - Partial solar eclipse across southern Antarctic Ocean
November 25 - Partial solar eclipse visible from southern tip of Africa after sunrise and from Tasmania and southern New Zealand before sunset
December 10 - Total lunar eclipse the western U.S. and Canada
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