When Noel Gallagher sang, "Lately, did you ever feel the pain, in the morning rain?" at Audley End on Saturday night, 10,000 delirious fans had already been soaked to the bone for hours.

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds were in north Essex for another sell-out Heritage Live show at the stately home.

Former Kasabian frontman Tom Meighan kicked off the evening with a blistering performance.

He has lost none of his swagger, reassuring the audience: 'I'm not dead yet!"

Thurrock Gazette:

As the rain turned horizontal, anthemic crowd-pleaser I'm On Fire rounded off a thrilling hour-long set.

Liverpool's The Zutons showed they are also as fresh as ever, with Abi Harding's pulsing saxophone the driving force behind the music.

Frontman Dave McCabe and the band have a new LP, but it was largely old favourites from 2004's Who Killed the Zutons? which whipped the crowd into a frenzy.

A pumping Zuton Fever opened, with Dirty Dancehall, Pressure Point, Confusion, Why Won't You Give Me Your Love? and You Will, You Won't.

Thurrock Gazette: The ZutonsThe Zutons (Image: Chris Wilkin)

The insanely catchy Remember Me got fans dancing, but the biggest reaction was reserved for set-closer Valerie.

Over in the VIP area, string quartet String Fever's classic takes on pop were keeping spirits up as the rain continued to come down.

Thurrock Gazette: String Fever perform in the VIP tentString Fever perform in the VIP tent (Image: Chris Wilkin)

Then, what everyone had been waiting for.

Double-denimed Oasis legend Noel Gallagher was probably the coolest man on the planet as his High Flying Birds launched into songs from their latest album, including title track Council Skies, set-opener Pretty Boy and Open The Door, See What You Find.

Thurrock Gazette: Noel Gallagher on the big screenNoel Gallagher on the big screen (Image: Paula Oldham)

"So this is Essex?" asked Noel, before inquiring how all the fake tans in the crowd were coping with the deluge.

Favourites If I Had A Gun and In The Heat Of The Moment kept up the momentum, before Noel cheekily dedicated What A Life "to Manchester City fans everywhere".

Thurrock Gazette: Festival goers Mary and Ben Handley, from Clare, shelter from the rainFestival goers Mary and Ben Handley, from Clare, shelter from the rain (Image: Chris Wilkin)

Dead In The Water and Going Nowhere continued to thrill, before the band unleashed much-anticipated Oasis classics The Importance Of Being Idle, The Masterplan, Half The World Away and Little By Little as the drenched masses went wild in a rain-soaked singalong.

Thurrock Gazette: Michelle Hewitt and Sheryl Rose from Braintree in the VIP areaMichelle Hewitt and Sheryl Rose from Braintree in the VIP area (Image: Chris Wilkin)

A cover of Bob Dylan's The Mighty Quinn opened the encores, followed by a heart-wrenching Live Forever and Don't Look Back In Anger to bring the day to a thrilling finale.

Noel was smiling as 10,000 ecstatic fans went home very wet, but very, very happy.