An East End teen who shares his two bed council house with his parents and two brothers has won a £76,000 scholarship to Prince William and Harry’s old school Eton College.
Hasan Patel, 16, became the youngest speaker at a major political party conference, beating former Conservative leader William Hague.
He now has an army of followers after his rousing speech at the Labour conference last August when he was 15.
The state school student from a council estate, will rub shoulders with the elite when he joins the world-famous Berkshire school next September.
The rising political star, who currently studies at George Mitchell School in Leyton, will enter the sixth from to study A-Levels in four subjects; History, Geography, Politics and Drama and Theatre Studies.
It is a far cry from the two-bedroom council flat he shares with dad Abdul, 69, mum Aysha, 49, and two brothers Yusuf, 17, and Adam, 21.
He won his place after coming through a gruelling three-day assessment at the Berkshire School which included three entrance exams, seven interviews and a group interview.
Aged just 15 at the time, he was a year younger than the previous youngest speaker, former Conservative party leader William Hague.
Speaking of his future at Eton, he said: “I am very much there to provoke lively debate.
“I am a boy from a Leyton council estate who receives free school meals. My parents are on welfare and I share a room with my brothers.
“My dad was very smart and politically engaged but lived in abject poverty in India.
“The students at Eton are from the most privileged corners of society, we could not be any more different.
“My views may be different to them because my life experiences are very different. I think that is what impressed Eton, they wanted someone who could offer a different perspective.
“Eton is a place where they encourage debate, I genuinely believe I can offer something to the school.
He added: “My politics won’t change because I am entering a different type of environment.
“I may be attending Eton but I will still be the same boy from East London when I arrive and when I leave.I am not joining the elite but simply benefiting from the education my family would never in a million years be able to afford.
“This opportunity will allow me to return to my community better armed to tackle the many social problems we face.”
Hasan was mentored throughout the application process by his school’s Headteacher Saeed Hussain.
Hasan said: “George Mitchell is an exceptional school. The support I have received from the school, and particularly from my Headteacher, has been incredible.
“This is a place which gives us the students the tools and support to pursue our dreams. I have been here since I was three years old when I joined the nursery; it has played a crucial part in developing me into the person I am today.
Headteacher Saeed Hussain said: “Hasan is a truly exceptional young man. Aside from being incredibly bright he is one of the most engaged and motivated students I have known in my years of teaching.
“He is the type of person who will seize this opportunity generously offered by Eton. His is a name I expect we will all be hearing more of in the near future.”
Hasan’s dad left India in the early 1970s to build a better life for himself and his family. His mum moved over in the mid-1990s.
By Tom Barnes