European markets surged following the win in the first round of voting in France's presidential election by centrist candidate Emanuelle Macron.
Macron won 23.8% of votes at the weekend, while far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen took 21.5%. The turnout was high, at almost 79%. Macron, a former banker who ran without the backing of an established party, is favourite to win the run-off on 7 May.
The FTSE 100 Index jumped almost 2%, or 134.1 points to 7248.6, as a victory by Le Pen, who wants to withdraw from the euro and hold a referendum on whether to leave the European Union, looks less likely. The FTSE 250 also hit a fresh record high up 1% 19,621.69.
Stocks rose across the continent, with Germany's DAX up 3% and the Cac 40 in France up 4.5%.
CMC Markets chief market analyst Michael Hewson said: "While the market reaction was one of a collective sigh of relief that saw the German DAX hit new record highs and the Cac 40 hit its highest levels since the end of 2007, the fact remains that for the first time since the 1960's the French election will be fought between two candidates that are outside the mainstream of traditional French politics."
In London banking stocks were on the front foot as the potential for financial upheaval across Europe retreated. Barclays lifted 5%, or 10.2p to 218.1p, while Standard Chartered jumped 4.2%, or 28.8p to 714.7p.
Energy price caps
Energy suppliers were among the biggest losers in the top flight after Scottish Power became the latest major firm to hit out at Conservative plans to introduce price caps on household bills.
The Conservative Party is expected to include proposals for a cap on expensive standard variable energy tariffs – the most common rate paid by households – in its forthcoming manifesto.
But Keith Anderson, chief corporate officer of Scottish Power, told the BBC Today programme: "Price controls tend to lead to less competition, and therefore less benefit for customers."
Centrica fell 9.3p to 198.4p, while SSE was 42p lower to 1043p.
The biggest afternoon risers in the FTSE 100 Index were Smurfit Kappa Group (+113p to 2096p), CRH (+152p to 2861p), Barclays (+10.2p to 218.1p), Standard Chartered (+28.8p to 714.7p) and GKN (+13.7p to 365p).
The biggest afternoon fallers in the FTSE 100 Index were Centrica (-9.3p to 198.4p), SSE (-42p lower to 1043p), Randgold Resources (-180p to 6890p), Fresnillo (-11p to 1487p) and Severn Trent (-4p to 2316p).
The biggest afternoon risers in the FTSE 250 Index were Kennedy Wilson Europe Real Estate (+141.5p to 1120p), Computacenter (+56p to 789.5p), Ferrexpo (+7.6p to 154.1p), Fidelity European Values (+7.7p to 202.7p) and DS Smith (+14p to 433.3p).
The biggest afternoon fallers in the FTSE 250 Index were Allied Minds (-8p to 159.1p), Tritax Big Box Reit (-7p to 140.3p), Vectura Group (-5.7p to 142.6p), BTG (-14p to 628.5p) and PayPoint (-14p to 1009p).