Bruce Dickinson On ‘Horrible’ Times At School: 15 Kids Would Beat The Crap Out Of Me Every Night

In a new chat with The Quietus, Bruce Dickinson said he had tough days at his boarding school in Northamptonshire.

His family sent him there in his teenage years but other students mistreated him:

“I was on my own in boarding school and I got the sh*t kicked out of me on a regular basis. Like, every night. The lights would go out in the dormitory and 15 kids would beat the crap out of me. It was pretty horrible, but it builds up a degree of magical toughness which stood me in good stead. Not that I’d recommend it. There are other ways of doing that which are less unpleasant.”

He Developed High Self-Esteem

Then, the interviewer asked if boarding school caused him ‘Boarding School Syndrome,’ with symptoms like feeling out of place, depression, and trouble making friends. The singer replied:

“I think probably all of those apply to me. With the exception of depression. I built up an overinflated sense of self-esteem in response to having the sh*t kicked out of me every day. You can either go, ‘Oh, I must deserve it.’ Or you go, ‘You’re a bunch of idiots. You won’t hit me again. It won’t hurt.'”

Dickinson added:

“You build up this shield of mental invulnerability because that’s the only way you can deal with it. It’s not generally useful because you don’t want to go wandering around under an invisible shield. It makes you aloof and distant.”

Other Memories From His Boarding School

In another interview with The Telegraph, Bruce shared that during his time at Oundle, he created his own small ‘terrorist’ group at the school:

“I sent two tons of horsesh*t to my housemaster. I was beaten but it was absolutely worth it. Six strokes of a cane and your arse would bleed, but it was definitely worth it, seeing two tons of steaming horseshit on the front steps of this ornate Georgian facade and thinking, ‘I did that.'”

The rocker is currently on tour to promote his latest solo album, ‘The Mandrake Project.’ It arrived on March 1. After performing in the UK until May 24, he will head towards Europe for more shows.