As Prince Harry turns 34 today, Royal Central has compiled a list of 34 facts about the 6th-in-line to the throne.
1. Harry’s full name is Henry Charles Albert David, and his title is Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales.
2. The Prince was born in the late afternoon of 15th September 1984 at St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington (ten Royal children have been born at this hospital, including Prince George and Prince William). Harry weighed 6lb 14oz.
3. Not only is Prince Harry the Duke of Sussex, but he is also the Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel.
4. At birth, as the second child of The Prince and Princess of Wales, Harry was 3rd in the line of succession.
5. Henry, it was decided by both his parents, would be known as Harry.
6. Harry, baptised at St George’s Chapel, Windsor, has six godparents, including: his uncle, The Duke of York, Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones (Princess Margaret’s daughter), and Bryan Organ, an artist who painted his mother, Diana.
7. The Prince was educated at Eton, following his brother and maternal uncle and grandfather. He completed his A-levels in Art, Geography, and Art History at Eton College. He achieved a B in Art and a D in Geography, taking Art History to AS-level only. These results secured him a place at Sandhurst for Officer Training in his grandmother’s Army.
8. A gap year saw Harry travel to an Australian cattle farm, as his father had done years before him, Argentina and Lesotho, a small Kingdom in Africa. Seeing the plight of the country, Harry featured in a documentary called The Forgotten Kingdom, highlighting the issues of Lesotho and its orphans, many of whom lost their parents to AIDS.
9. At 22, Harry collaborated with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho and formed the charity Sentebale, which means ‘forget-me-not’ in Sesotho. The aim of the charity is to help the most vulnerable children, mostly orphans, of Lesotho to lead happy and productive lives.
10. Harry and elder brother, William, organised the 2007 Concert for Diana to raise money for their charities, including Sentebale, which Harry established, and Centrepoint, a cause William supports and that Diana also supported.
11. After completing his military training, Harry became a commissioned officer, a Coronet (second lieutenant), within the Household Cavalry, or the Blues and Royals.
12. Harry’s mother once described her younger son as “very artistic and sporty.” It is said that if Harry had not joined the Army, he would have been a wildlife photographer in Africa.
13. The Duke of Sussex is the first member of The Royal Family to serve in an active war-zone since Prince Andrew in The Falklands back in the 1980s. He has completed two tours of Afghanistan, the first in 2007/2008 and the second in 2012.
14. Harry said in an interview: “There’s no way I’m going to put myself through Sandhurst and then sit on my arse back home while my boys are out fighting for their country”, showing his willingness to fight alongside his fellow soldiers. Harry was involved in the decision making about his deployment and spoke about his experience in Afghanistan: “Loss of life is as tragic and devastating as it gets, but to see young lads- much younger than me, wrapped in plastic and missing limbs, with hundreds of tubes coming out of them, was something I never prepared myself for.”
15. The Prince was taken off the first tour he was to be part of, despite the plan being revealed to the media in early 2007. He was then was secretly deployed with Canadian Forces later that year. It was revealed in February 2008 of the then 3rd-in-line’s role in the conflict.
16. Prince Harry received his wings from his father, The Prince of Wales, in 2010 after he completed his pilot training. His role in Afghanistan was as a co-pilot/gunner.
17. Owing to the success in his role as Second Lieutenant, Harry received a promotion in 2011 and became Captain Wales.
18. A poll conducted in 2012 showed that Harry was the third most popular member of The Royal Family, after William and The Queen.
19. Captain Wales is the first member of The Royal Family to reach the South Pole, which he achieved as part of a ‘Walking with the Wounded’ expedition in 2013. On an earlier expedition in 2011 for the same cause, Prince Henry of Wales spent five days trekking with wounded servicemen and women on their journey to the North Pole, having to leave early for his brother’s wedding.
20. The Prince of Wales’s younger son took a staff officer role in Defence Engagement or S03, which involves event arrangement; he is now based at Horseguard’s Parade, a stone’s throw from The Queen’s London home, Buckingham Palace.
21. On a visit to the USA in 2012, Harry witnessed the Warrior Games. This inspired the Prince to set up the Invictus Games, which continues to be an immense success.
22. The young Prince holds over 20 patronages, including The Royal Foundation, which was set up by Harry, William and Catherine in 2011. The three main areas of concern for the foundation are: young people, the Armed Forces and conservation, combining three of the Royals’ passions.
23. Harry was introduced to charity and disadvantaged people at a young age. Diana, Princess of Wales tried to give her sons a wide range of experiences as heirs to the throne to help keep them grounded, and so took her sons to many places, including homeless shelters and AIDS clinics. This was balanced out with more ‘normal’ activities, like eating out at McDonald’s.
24. The Prince’s charity work has not gone unnoticed: in 2010, Henry was awarded the Ein Herz für Kinder Golden Heart Award for ‘charitable and humanitarian efforts’. Two years later, the Atlantic Council awarded The Prince the Distinguished Humanitarian Leadership Award.
25. At The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding in 2011, Harry was William’s Best Man. Similarly, at Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle in 2018, William was the Best Man. Usually, Royal weddings involve Supporters, as opposed to Best Men.
26. In support of The Queen and the British Government, Prince Harry has undertaken engagements all over the world. He and Meghan will shortly visit Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga.
27. Harry’s official residence is in Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace, making The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester his neighbours.
28. His first overseas tour was, however, with his parents to Italy in 1985.
29. The Prince is an Honorary Air Commandant of Royal Air Force Honington and Commodore-in-Chief of Small Ships and Diving.
30. At 21, Harry was made a Counsellor of State – he could make decisions on behalf of The Queen while she was in Malta for the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting. The Earl of Wessex ceased to be a Counsellor when Harry turned 21, and the other four current Counsellors are The Prince of Wales, Duke of Edinburgh, The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of York.
31. The Duke revealed that he proposed to Meghan Markle in the kitchen of Nottingham Cottage, over a roast chicken.
32. Prince Harry has three medals to his name: an Operation Service Medal for Afghanistan, followed by a Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal and a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.
33. Harry is known to be a user of social media and has accounts under different pseudonyms. He once used the name ‘Spike Wells’ for his private Facebook account, which has since been deactivated.