In 1945, in his first day in Downing Street, Clement Attlee confirmed that Winston Churchill would remain in his post of Minister of Defence, a position that he had concurrently held as War-time Prime Minister.
Attlee and Churchill win the Khaki Election of 1945
by Ed & Scott PalterDuring that time he had also been Leader of the Tories, but ironically, having crossed the aisle to switch parties twice before, this time "Winnie" had been unceremoniously dumped by own party. Having muscled into Downing Street only because Lord Halifax's peerage barred him from occupying the Prime Minister's office, Churchill still did not become Leader for six months until ill health forced Neville Chamberlain's retirement in October 1940.
Fortunately for Churchill's career, if the Tories hated him for supplanting Chamberlain, then the British electorate hated the Tories even more. Twenty Members of Parliament left the Conservative Party as well; these Churchill loyalists ran as National Commonwealth Party Candidates in districts where the Labour Party agreed not to field a candidate, much like the post World War agreement between the Liberal David Lloyd George and the majority Conservative Party. Crucially, they agreed to embrace the Beveridge Report and the result was a landslide victory for a new-style Government of National Unity. The Leader of the Opposition Anthony Eden had his work cut out to recover Tory fortunes before Churchill could destroy the Coalition from the inside.