16 September 2015

A Life More Noble

A life more noble Cover

What does it mean to live a noble life? A new book from Octavia sets out to find some answers.

Nobility is not a word that comes naturally to twenty-first century lips - it sounds archaic, even pompous. Can it be retrieved? Dr Rowan Williams

With contributions from Octavia residents and staff members alongside high-profile contributors such as Ian Hislop, the Rt Hon. Alan Johnson MP, Tamsin Greig, Deborah Meaden and Grayson Perry, A Life More Noble marks the 150th anniversary of Octavia buying her first property to let to poor Londoners.

It explores a phrase Octavia used to describe her ambition in life: to ‘make individual life noble, homes happy and family life good’.

Is that mission still relevant 150 years on?

The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer - we need a modern-day Octavia to get us back on track. Maxine Peake

Octavia Hill is not only regarded as a social housing pioneer, but her approach of visiting tenants in their homes means she is also widely considered the 'grandmother' of social work. She rejected charity in favour of helping people help themselves. A number of the book's contributors reflect on the nobility in social work, from Octavia's own care home managers to former hostage negotiator for the Metropolitan Police, Richard Mullender, who discusses the importance of listening to establishing good relationships.

The book is only £9.99 - and all profits are going to the Octavia Foundation to support vulnerable people in west and central London.

Visit our website lifemorenoble.co.uk for more details. Don't forget to watch the trailer too!

The book is available for order online on Amazon and Waterstones. It is also available in Octavia Foundation charity shops and selected booksellers including Daunt Books.