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Celebrity support for The Book of Nuggets set to drive charity fundraising

29 November 2023

Celebrities from the worlds of TV, film, sport, politics, literature, news and science have shared their wise words in a book raising funds for Kidney Research UK.  

Juliet Solomon shaking hands and holding a book in her other arm.
The Book of Nuggets book launch. Image credit Matilda Baxendale-Kirby

'Nuggets' of wisdom

Compiled by Juliet Solomon in memory and honour of her mother Lady Judith Solomon, The Book of Nuggets has drawn together over 390 ‘nuggets’ of wisdom which people from all walks of life have found important in their lives.  

Some of the contributors are well known including Andy Cole, Sir Michael Palin, Dame Judie Dench, Delia Smith, Dame Shirley Bassey, Dawn French and Stephen Fry. Their insights sit alongside many others, including Holocaust survivor Lily Ebert, Chelsea pensioner Colin Thackery and Figen Murray, whose son was killed in the Manchester arena bombing. And we also hear from kidney patients, their families and researchers who are transforming treatments for patients and hoping to find a cure for kidney disease.

Sharing valuable lessons

“People gave so generously, selflessly, and warm-heartedly,” says Juliet. “They offered hard-won wise words mined from their own experience – and their notes are shot through with a rich, fascinating and enlightening blend of insight, intelligence, judgement, sanity, understanding and shrewdness. They are also by turns funny and serious; contemplative and quirky; surprising and painfully sad. 

“I was incredibly moved that so many good folk were willing to give of themselves and share valuable lessons from their own struggles, trials and joys.” 

Juliet chose ‘nuggets’ for the theme of this collection in tribute to her mother, Lady Judith Solomon, who she describes as “an endlessly generous person, always ready and glad to share the wisdom she had gleaned in her life”.  

Lady Judith had been affected by kidney disease for many years after suffering from sepsis from a kidney disease while pregnant with her son Daniel.  

Eventually, after several years, her kidney function declined to below 10 per cent. 

Helping to fund research

“My mother had been offered dialysis when her kidney function started to decline and also in the final months of her life,” explains Juliet. “But it would have been a big decision to start dialysis at her age and spend so much time in hospital. We respected her decision not to elect to have dialysis and the last few months of her life were spent as she wanted, at home.” 

However, the family felt that information about dialysis and options for those who chose not to take up the treatment were lacking. Juliet says her mother was concerned about the side-effects, and so funding raised from the proceeds of the book, in addition to a grant the family has given to Kidney Research UK, will focus on research into making dialysis more tolerable, improving outcomes and reducing anxiety associated with the treatment.

Sandra Currie, chief executive of Kidney Research UK said: “We are very moved by Juliet’s generosity in ensuring the work of Kidney Research UK will benefit from her fantastic project. She has curated something very special. A perfect gift at any time of the year, the Book of Nuggets will help us continue to transform treatments and improve outcomes for patients. People whose lives are affected by kidney disease often have to face a barrage of complications and challenges due to the exhausting rollercoaster of treatment, so it is especially gratifying to see their pearls of wisdom included in this marvellous book. There really is something for every reader, and I know I have spotted several nuggets that will help to guide me in my daily life.”

The Book of Nuggets book launch. Image credit Matilda Baxendale-Kirby
The Book of Nuggets book launch. Image credit Matilda Baxendale-Kirby

Buy a book

The Book of Nuggets priced £19.00 is available to buy from our online shop, with all proceeds from the sale of the book going to the charity.  

four people holding the book to show the front cover
Launch of The Book of Nuggets. Image credit Matilda Baxendale-Kirby

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