Abigail Van-West in Startups:
When his mother died of a brain haemorrhage and his father began to work away from home, Geldof was required to look after himself at the age of seven and soon began to understand the value of independence.
“I was forced by circumstances into an independent life, an organised life. I had to organise the milk, the food, the coal, wrapping up the newspaper, and getting a newspaper to light the fire. I was forced back upon myself, forced into independence.”
Geldof is known for his refusal to hold back when it comes to expressing something he is passionate about, from convincing millions of the need for charity in poverty stricken Ethiopia through globally broadcast charity concert Live Aid in 1985, to demanding that politicians “make poverty history” at Live 8 20 years later. And he puts his strong opinions and determination down to the harsh lessons of his early years.
“There was no-one in the house so there was no-one to temper my opinions as I formulated them raw and child-like. But the downside of it was of course that I really didn’t understand what authority was. If your parents abandon you, even if it’s not their fault, you think, ‘Why should I trust authority? They always leave’.”