Prince Harry wanted to be his school's 'bad boy'

Prince Harry has always had a mischievous streak, even while he attended some of England's most elite boarding schools. The Queen's 31-year-old grandson has admitted that he was never one for the books and always wanted to be the school's "bad boy."

"I didn't enjoy school at all," said Harry, who was visiting the Ottery Youth Centre in Cape Town, South Africa, which looks after teens from troubled backgrounds.

"I would have liked to come to a place like this. When I was at school I wanted to be the bad boy."


Prince Harry visited a youth centre in Cape Town that looks after teens from troubled backgrounds.

But what was important, said Harry, was not to bow to peer pressure. "It's much harder to stand up for what you believe in," he said.

The prince is currently on a tour to Lesotho and South Africa, where one of his engagements took him to the youth centre. The teenagers have all been referred there by the courts, and one of the programs they attend is overseen by Prof. Ruben Richards, an expert in gang culture.

When the professor asked if anyone knew who Prince Harry was, he was met by a room of blank faces.

"I'm much cooler than my older brother William," quipped Harry.

"That's the right answer!" laughed Harry, who went on to introduce himself. "My name is Prince Harry, the Queen of England's grandson, Princess Diana's son. I've come all the way from England to see you guys. I'm interested to hear all your stories."

Harry spoke to the boys about the importance of role models in avoiding the lure of gang culture. While delivering the important message, the cheeky royal couldn't help take a dig at his big brother, Prince William.

"If you've got an older brother that's not into gangs, that's a huge positive," said Harry. "Older brothers are supposedly the cool ones. I'm a younger brother but I'm much cooler than my older brother."

Prof. Richards laughed and promised not to tell William, to which Harry replied, "That's all right. He knows it."

"When I was at school I wanted to be the bad boy," the prince admitted.

One of the boys Harry met was 16-year-old Amigo, who is from Mozambique and whose father comes from Brazil. Amigo started smoking and drinking alcohol at the age of seven.

Harry also chatted to one boy nicknamed Lucky, who arrived at the centre two years ago. "I had a lot of anger," said Lucky. "A big guy abused me when I was six. I came here because I needed help."

Since then, Lucky has taken up martial arts, including kickboxing and karate, and has been successful in competitions. "That's why they call me Lucky," he said. "My anger started to go out of me."

Harry arrived in Lesotho last week to open the Mamohato Children's Centre, a new facility run by his charity Sentebale. In South Africa, he will continue to carry out engagements, before returning to England on Thursday.

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