Controversial television presenter and author Neil Oliver has resigned from his position as a fellow of Scotland’s most prestigious scientific body over views which put him at odds with it.

The television presenter, who hosts a weekly show on the GB News channel, held a position as a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE).

However, The Herald has discovered that following discussions in which it became clear his views on science were at odds with those of the Society he has resigned.

A spokesperson for the Royal Society of Edinburgh said: “Neil Oliver was elected to the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2020. During his time as a Fellow did not take part in any RSE business.

“In discussion with Mr Oliver, he understood that his current views on various matters, widely aired on television, put him at odds with scientific and broader academic learning within the Society. Following discussions, he offered to resign his association with the RSE with immediate effect.”

Oliver made a name as a television presenter and author, presenting several archaeological and historical documentary series on the BBC through the early 2000s, including A History of Scotland, Vikings, and Coast.

The RSE fellowship was not Oliver’s first recognition in the world of academia, having been awarded an honorary doctorate in 2011 from Abertay University in Dundee.

A second honorary degree came in 2015 from the University of Glasgow, his alma mater, in recognition of his contributions to broadcasting and public engagement.

The reputation he garnered as a voice on Scotland’s landscape led to him being given the presidency of the National Trust for Scotland from 2017-2020.

Read more: Why Scotland’s national academy should ‘cancel’ Neil Oliver

One year after he was made a fellow of the prestigious RSE, amongst the company of Scotland’s most foremost academics and intellectuals, Oliver also took up a presenting slot on GB News, in 2021.

The views he expressed on his GB News programme attracted controversy, particularly around the Covid-19 pandemic and the safety of the vaccine against the disease.

As well as branding lockdown measures “the biggest mistake in world history”, Oliver said on air that he would not allow his children to be vaccinated.

On his decision, Oliver said he would “cheerfully risk catching Covid” in the name of freedom.

Speaking on his GB News show in 2021, the presenter stated: “If my freedom means you might catch Covid from me, then so be it. That's honestly how I see it.”

In the years since lockdowns eased, Oliver has spoken of “more and more excess deaths…people of all ages dying every day, deaths unrelated to Covid”, in conversations surrounding the effects of what he calls the “so-called vaccine.”

In 2021 he appeared to liken Covid lockdowns to Nazi propaganda, saying in a monologue delivered on his GB News show: “In Poland in 1941 there was a propaganda campaign that spread the message that Jews spread typhus, a lethal disease. Blaming an identifiable minority for the spread of disease is a ghost we should have laid to rest long ago.”

Other comments Oliver has made on his GB News show include the allegation that British politicians are waging a “silent war” to take “total control of the people” and impose a “one-world government”.

In May of this year, he shared an image on X, formerly Twitter, depicting Bill Gates. The image shows Gates holding vaccine trials while wearing symbols including a swastika and an illuminati pyramid.

Alongside the image, Oliver wrote: “Bill Gates: the text book example of the danger posed by rich and powerful people utterly devoid of empathy or care for individual human life.”

Speaking on the Scottish Independence Referendum in 2014, Oliver said: "I'm proud of Britain. I find this kind of internecine squabbling puts my teeth on edge. I would rather that it would just go away - or that it had never happened." 

Neil Oliver’s literary agent has been contacted for comment.