Lily Cole used to feel she could relate to the character of Alice from 'Alice in Wonderland'.

The 30-year-old model was recently made a patron of the Bronte society - which is one of the oldest literary societies in the world - and Lily has revealed just how much books played a role in her upbringing.

Asked which fictional character most resembles herself, Lily replied: ''Tricky to be objective about oneself, and I think it changes over time! As a child I related to fantasy characters such as Lyra in Philip Pullman's series, and Alice in 'Alice in Wonderland'.

''As a young adult I fell in love with Ada in Nabokov's Ada, or Ardor. Right now I am finding the protagonist in 'Hot Milk', Sofia, relatable but I haven't finished the book yet.''

But outside of the literary world, Lily doesn't really have any heroes.

Instead, the British star is looking towards the next generation for inspiration.

She told The i Paper: ''I'm hoping my heroes are in the next generation: the kids growing up now, who will help solve our environmental crises.''

Meanwhile, Lily was recently forced to defend the decision to involve her in the 200th anniversary celebration of Bronte's life.

A leading literary expert quit the Bronte Society after it announced the actress and model as ''creative partner'' for the bicentenary events held by the Bronte Parsonage Museum.

But Lily slammed the reaction as ''prejudice'' and likened it to that which Bronte herself faced in the 1800s, when she published her acclaimed novel under a pseudonym in order to disguise the fact she was a woman.

She said in a statement: ''2018 offers us both the 100th anniversary of women's suffrage in the UK, and the 200th anniversary of Emily Bronte's birth, so it feels poignant to begin the year on the topic of prejudice.''