Professor Chris Whitty is tipped to receive a knighthood in the Queen’s New Year’s honours list for the extraordinary role he has played in tackling the coronavirus crisis.
England’s chief medical officer (CMO) became the trusted face of the country’s daily Covid briefings at the outset of the pandemic, delivering hard hitting statistics and advice to millions.
The scientist and civil servant has been front and centre of the decision-making and communication of messages to the public.
Ministers say he regularly puts in long hours at his desk, sometimes seven days a week, to protect the nation.
‘Chris may often put on a dour face but that is exactly what was required during the dark days of lockdown,’ a senior source told The Sun.
‘Chris has been calm and unflappable throughout and is a trusted source of wisdom and knowledge. He thoroughly deserves his honour.’
Whitty already holds a lesser honour — Companion of the Order of the Bath — for his services to tropical medicine in the UK and Africa during the ebola crisis.
His deputy, Professor Jonathan Van Tam – known for his no-nonsense advice at TV press conferences – is also tipped for honours, according to The Times.