Names+Faces: Prince Harry once 'wanted out' of Britain's royal family

Share on

In an interview with the Mail, the prince said the time he spent in the army was the 'best escape'


Prince Harry says he once "wanted out" of the British royal family.

In an interview published in the Mail on Sunday, the prince said the time he spent in the army was "the best escape I've ever had" and that he thought about giving up his title.

He said: "I felt I wanted out, but then decided to stay in and work out a role for myself."

Harry is fifth in line to the throne.

The comments followed an interview published in Newsweek in which he said he doubted anyone in the royal family wanted to be king or queen.

He said his family "will carry out our duties at the right time" and that they're "not doing this for ourselves, but for the greater good of the people."

namesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 1 Happy birthday, Prince Harry. The ginger prince turns 32 on Sept. 15.  WPA Pool Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 2 Prince Charles and Princess Diana leave St. Mary's Hospital in London with newborn Prince Henry Charles Albert David, known from that point on as just Prince Harry, on Sept. 15, 1984.  APnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 3 Princess Diana with Prince William and baby Prince Harry shortly after his birth in 1984.  Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 4 Princess Diana runs to Harry and William aboard the royal yacht Britannia in 1987.  Photo by Jayne Fincher Photographers Internationalnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 5 Harry, then almost 5, has the biggest grin in a group portrait with his parents and brother in the Sicily Islands in June 1989.  Associated Press /PAnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 6 Harry, then 5, went to the Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands with Princess Diana and William and other friends and relatives during their vacation in April 1990.  Elise Amendola, APnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 7 Harry, then 7, enjoys a ride with his mother and brother on the Maid of Mist in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, in October 1991.  Hans Dderyk, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 8 Harry and Diana went to the races in July, 1994, when he was just shy of 10. The Princess of Wales was to present the winner's cup at at the British Grand Prix race at the track.  Alistair Grant, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 9 In Jaunary 1995, Harry, 10, joins William and his younger cousins, Princess Beatrice, 6, center right, and Princess Eugenie, 4, children of Prince Andrew and Sarah Duchess of York, at the exclusive Klosters ski resort in Switzerland.  Photo by Martin Keene, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 10 Harry and family gather for VJ Day commemoration in London in August 1995.  Johnny Eggitt, AFP/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 11 In September 1995, when Harry was turning 11, he accompanied his by-then estranged parents to Eton for Will's first day of school there, and watched as Will signed the entrance book.  Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 12 Shock and awe for Harry and his brother in September 1997, when Diana was killed in a Paris car crash and Britain erupted in an outpouring of grief. Harry, then nearly 13, with his father and brother, is moved, along with the rest of the country, at the sea of floral tributes left for his mother outside Kensington Palace.  Rebecca Naden, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 13 Britain wept at the sight of Harry, with his grandfather Prince Philip, his brother, his uncle Earl Spencer, and his father walking behind Diana's funeral procession on Sept. 6, 1997, from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey.  Jeff Mitchell, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 14 Harry waits with his father and brother for Princess Diana's coffin to be loaded into a hearse after the funeral service in Westminster Abbey.  John Gaps III, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 15 A few months later, Harry looked more cheerful when he accompanied his father to South Africa and got to meet the Spice Girls, including Emma Bunton, in Johannesburg on Nov. 1, 1997.  John Stillwell, AFPnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 16 The traditional photo call at Klosters, this time in April 2000, featured Will and Harry and Prince Charles horsing around for the media on the third day of their holiday in the Swiss resort.  John Stillwell, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 17 After their mother's death, the British media agreed to leave the boys alone while they were still in school. Harry eventually followed his brother to Eton. Here, at nearly 19, he wears the Eton uniform, as he prepares to leave the school in May 2003.  Kirsty Wigglesworth, Associated Pressnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 18 The young royals are known to dislike the paparazzi and Harry is no exception. But sometimes he fights back, as in this instance, outside an exclusive London nightclub in the early hours of Oct. 21, 2004. Prince and pap were slightly injured.  Photo by Charlie Pycraft, APnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 19 A low point for Harry: When he wore a Nazi swastika on his arm for a costume party in January 2005. The British tabloid "The Sun" printed the picture just as the royal family prepared to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Holocaust. Harry, then 20, apologized profusely.  Gabriel Bouys, AFPnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 20 When his father and Camilla Parker Bowles married in April 2005, Harry was there for the small civil wedding at Windsor's town hall, and for the reception hosted by the queen at Windsor Castle. He also helped decorate the going-away car.  Tim Ockenden, AFP/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 21 Harry has many female friends but only two serious girlfriends in recent years, including Chelsy Davy, the Zimbabwe-born London lawyer. Here the two snuggle at a cricket match in 2007 in St John's, Antigua.  Shaun Botterill, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 22 They are not a couple but Harry and Pippa Middleton are still pals. She was maid of honor, he was best man at the royal wedding of their siblings, Will and Kate, in April 2011.  Photo by John Stillwell /WPA Pool/ Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 23 Harry relaxes with with a computer football game and fellow Apache Helicopter crew members during a 12-hour VHR (very high readiness) shift at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan in November 2012.  John Stillwell, WPA Pool/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 24 After Eton, Harry entered Sandhurst military academy, joined the Army, became a helicopter pilot and eventually did two tours of duty in Afghanistan. In this December 2012 picture, when he was 28 and on his second tour, Harry does a pre-flight check.  John Stillwell, AFP/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 25 Harry was a huge hit on his first big overseas tour representing the queen, during her Diamond Jubilee year, in the spring of 2012. He started here in Belize touched down in the Bahamas and Jamaica, and also went to Brazil.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 26 Harry is a keen polo player, has played all over the world. Here, he charges down a field in in Campinas, Brazil during his Diamond Jubilee visit in March 2012.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 27 Harry typically throws himself into whatever he's doing, in this case, posing with and racing track star Usain Bolt at the University of the West Indies in in Kingston, Jamaica, in March 2012.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 28 Harry can dress like a royal when the occasion demands, as in 2012, during the queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations in London. He traveled in a horse-drawn carriage procession to Buckingham Palace for the Diamond Jubilee Lunch on June 5.  Stefan Wermuth. WPA Pool/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 29 Harry, Will and Kate were Olympic Ambassadors during the London Games in August 2012, and all three were enthusiastic cheerleaders in the stands for all the athletes and the British teams in particular.  Quinn Rooney, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 30 In August 2012, just before deploying to Afghanistan, Harry went to Las Vegas where he got naked playing pool at a party. Another guest snapped cellphone pictures which were published online. Harry apologized, saying later that it was a case of behaving too much like a pilot about to deploy and not enough like a prince.  Daniel Sorabji, AFP/Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 31 Harry's African children's charity, Sentebale, is close to his heart, along with the country of Lesotho and its heir, Prince Seeiso, who co-founded the charity. Here, he visits Kananelo Center for the deaf in Lesotho in February 2013.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 32 During Harry's weeklong tour of the USA in May 2013, he met with first lady Michelle Obama at the White House, laid a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery, toured New York City, played in a charity polo match in Connecticut, went to the Warrior Games in Colorado and checked out Superstorm Sandy damage at the New Jersey shore, accompanied by Gov. Chris Christie.  John Stillwell, Pool /Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 33 The campaign against landmines couldn't have asked for a better patron than Princess Diana, until Harry took up the cause. In August 2013, he went to Angola to inspect the work of the Halo Trust, touring minefields and and checking out the damage that mines can do.  AP/Halo Trustnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 34 Everyone looks great with Sydney Harbor in the backdrop. Harry was dressed to impress in military whites during a two-day trip to Australia in October 2013 to help commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Royal Australian Navy's fleet arriving into Sydney.  Ryan Pierse, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 35 A different kind of low point for Harry, at the bottom of the world in Antarctica. That's him, one of the leaders teams of wounded warriors from four nations on a race to reach the South Pole in December 2013.  WWTW / Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 36 His second girlfriend in recent years was English aristocrat Cressida Bonas, here with him at a rugby match in London in March 2014. They broke up soon after.  Stefan Wermuth, Reutersnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 37 Harry's affinity for the little ones is one of his endearing characteristics. Here, in Santiago, Chile, in June 2014, he met little Matias Gonzalez at a kindergarten for indigenous children, during a week in Brazil and Chile.  Dan Charity, Pool/ Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 38 When Kate Middleton joined the royal family, Harry said he finally had the sister he always wanted. With brother Will, they make for a tight trio of young royals. Harry has recently been linked to former beauty queen Camilla Thurlow, but so far he has not been snapped with her. However, he, Kate and Will are always together, as here in Belgium for a WWI commemorations in August 2014.  Virginia Mayo, APnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 39 Harry visited an art installation at the Tower of London featuring nearly 900,000 ceramic poppies, representing the British and Commonwealth troops who died. He, Will and Kate each 'planted' a poppy in sea of blood-red poppies spilling out of a window and through the moat around the ancient fortress, in August 2014.  John Stillwell, WPA /Pool Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 40 Harry tries out a F-Type Jaguar at the Jaguar Land Rover Driving Challenge, a curtain-raiser for the Invictus Games, on Sept. 9, 2014.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 41 Prince Harry plays a game of touch rugby with children during a visit to Linton Military Camp on May 13, 2015 in Palmerston North, New Zealand.  Hagen Hopkins, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 42 What a group! Prince Harry poses with Elton John, Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett backstage after Bennett and Lady Gaga's performance as part of the Cheek to Cheek Tour at the Royal Albert Hall in London, Monday, June 8, 2015.  Mark Allan, Mark Allan/Invision/APnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 43 (L-R) Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince George of Cambridge, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Harry and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (R) watch the fly-past from the balcony of Buckingham Palace following the Trooping The Colour ceremony on June 13, 2015 in London, England. The ceremony is Queen Elizabeth II's annual birthday parade.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 44 Prince Harry walks on the airfield at Goodwood Aerodrome as he is shown a Spitfire Aircraft that will take place in a Battle of Britain Flypast at Goodwood on September 15, 2015 in Chichester, England. The 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Britain is being marked by a historic flypast that brings more Battle of Britain aircraft together than ever before as a show of thanks to 'the few' and the sacrifices they made.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 45 Harry poses with retired RAF pilot Tom Neil, 95, a Battle of Britain vet, after Neil landed in a Spitfire following an historic 75th anniversary flypast. Harry was supposed to fly in the Spitfire himself but gave up his seat to Neil, after another Spitfire was grounded for service reasons.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 46 And what about that ginger beard? The attention-getting fuzz is a holdover from his summer conservation mission in Africa, where it's hard to shave went you're living in tents in the bush. Judge from social media, his fans approve of the look.  Chris Jackson, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 47 With Prince William and Duchess Kate, Prince Harry welcomed President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama to Kensington Palace on April 22, 2016.  WPA Pool, Getty Imagesnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 48 Prince Harry, creator of the Invictus Games, poses with UK Armed Forces Athlete Dave Henson (with Gold in the 200m) and other medal winners at this year’s event on May 10 in Orlando, Florida. The Invictus Games is the only International sporting event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women.  Chris Jackson, Getty Images for Invictusnamesfaces-prince-harry-once-wanted-out-of-britains-royal-family photo 49 Share on

Article Names+Faces: Prince Harry once 'wanted out' of Britain's royal family compiled by

You might also like