As veteran public policy editor of the Financial Times, whose knowledge of the NHS ensures a steady stream of well researched, insightful articles which are required reading for managers, ministers and Treasury mandarins, Nick Timmins poses questions at press conferences that can leave grown ministers quaking and looking to advisers for detail.

But his articles are rarely sensational - a recent one was headlined “Cautious success claimed in Cumbria” - and show the NHS in shades of grey, rather than black and white. He is particularly influential on social care.