Few expected the former BBC social affairs correspondent to take over as chief executive of the King’s Fund in 2004 - and even fewer anticipated his move to run the General Medical Council from next January.

Niall Dickson has kept the King’s Fund in the public eye as it produces challenging and useful work on health and social care and he influences debate at a national level. Will he be happy dealing with the dry, if important, issues of revalidation and continuing professional and medical education?