Storm Hector brought record-breaking winds and caused travel disruption as the prolonged spell of calm weather came to an end.
The Met Office had issued a yellow weather warning covering northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland due to the wind.
A gust of 74mph in Orlock Head, Northern Ireland, broke the June record for a gust in Ireland, the Met Office said.
Fallen trees across Scotland and Northern Ireland caused travel problems.
ScotRail said “chainsaw gangs” and overhead line teams have been deployed across the rail network to remove trees and branches that caused delays and cancellations to services.
In England, police closed the Tees flyover to high-sided vehicles and the Shields Ferry across the Tyne was not operating.
But the gusts were not all bad news, as more than a third of Britain’s electricity supply came from wind power.
Official figures showed that in the 30 minutes before 10am on Thursday, 34.5% of Britain’s electricity came from wind – far higher than the 6% recorded on previous, calmer days.
Nicky Maxey, of the Met Office, said records could be broken in Scotland as Storm Hector crosses over from Ireland.
The storm brought heavy rain to parts of Cumbria with 3.2in (80mm) falling, and 5.1in (130mm) in the Isle of Skye over the past 24 hours.
Further south in England, there will be blustery conditions but not the strong gusts experienced in the north.
A much weaker weather front was due to follow after Storm Hector passed out into the North Sea, bringing much more typical June weather with showers and bright spells.
The outlook for Saturday is similar, with the possibility of thunder while Sunday is expected to be the best day of the weekend, being drier with hazy sunshine.