Former gang boss shares story with Ipswich school pupils

Motivational speaker and former gang leader Paul Hannaford spoke to children and parents of Northgat

Motivational speaker and former gang leader Paul Hannaford spoke to children and parents of Northgate High School Picture: RACHEL EDGE - Credit: Archant

A reformed gang boss who survived seven stabbings and nearly lost a leg to drug addiction has taken his prevention message to an Ipswich school.

Motivational speaker and former gang leader Paul Hannaford Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Motivational speaker and former gang leader Paul Hannaford Picture: RACHEL EDGE - Credit: Archant

Paul Hannaford, who grew up in East London, became a gang leader at 21 and funded a £400-500 daily drug habit through crime.

Mr Hannaford turned his life around and has since taken his motivational workshop across the UK.

Visiting Northgate High School this week, he said: “There were consequences for me – major consequences.

“Now I get thousands of messages a week from children I’ve inspired.”

Paul Hannaford almost lost a leg to addiction Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Paul Hannaford almost lost a leg to addiction Picture: RACHEL EDGE - Credit: Archant


You may also want to watch:


A group of Northgate pupils were also among more than 120 to hear Mr Hannaford address a conference at the University of Suffolk in November.

Assistant head Dan Emery said: “It’s important for the pupils to hear it from the horse’s mouth. They’re in school for half their lives. We need to support their lives outside as well.”

Most Read

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter