Should George Osborne share honour with Stephen Hawking?

What does George Osborne have in common with Stephen Hawking?

The answer is not much.

Not unless David Cameron's controversial resignation honours list is approved.

Sunday's leak revealed Mr Cameron had recommended his former Chancellor for a prestigious and rare honour: the Companion of Honour.

There can only be 65 members of this elite group at any one time.

It is granted to those who have a made a major contribution to arts, science, medicine or government "over a long period of time".

Desmond Tutu is among the members of the 65-person group to have received the Companion of Honour title. Credit: PA

Current members include the world-renowned scientist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking.

He was rewarded for his remarkable work on gravitational singularity theorems in the framework of general relativity.

Professor Hawking has also been recognised for his work on quantum mechanics and his theory that black holes emit radiation.

George Osborne is well known for his omnishambles budget of 2012, his controversial austerity programme, his political loyalty to David Cameron and missing his own deficit targets by more than half a decade.

Actor Dame Maggie Smith was honoured for her long service to the arts. Credit: PA

(I am being a little unfair - but those are at least some of the things that come to mind when one thinks of George Osborne...)

The Companion of Honour award was founded in 1917 by King George V to "recognise services of national importance".

Desmond Tutu is also one of the 65 members, as is Sir John Major and Dame Maggie Smith.

So it would be a huge personal achievement were George Osborne to join this elite group.

And one wonders what the current members would make of the most recent appointee, should this honours list be approved.