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HMS Owl

HMS Owl, a striking former Royal Navy Air Squadron control tower, stands on Easter Ross Airfield 22 miles north of Inverness, close to the shores of the Moray Firth in the Scottish Highlands. The airfield was originally built as a satellite to nearby RAF Tain and was occupied by the Royal Navy during World War II when it was used as a base for torpedo carrying aircraft.

The British Standard team was immensely excited when approached by Justin Hooper and his wife Charlotte Seddon to work with them on Owl’s kitchen, utility and cloakroom. Intrigued by the curiosity of the Owl and it’s severe hard-edged exterior, we were keen to design a kitchen that was in keeping with the spirit of the wartime control tower.

Owl’s kitchen is dark and dramatic, with iroko worktops and cupboards painted in Off Black. An Aga sits at the centre of the kitchen, giving a heart to the home and a huddle point for the family through stark winters. When the sun shines, Owl’s interior is flooded with natural light that streams through the wealth of Crittall windows (literally - Justin told us he spent half the restoration cost on them alone!) allowing uninterrupted views across the landscape on all sides.

In 2015, Channel 4’s ‘Restoration Man’ followed owners Justin and Charlotte in their dedicated and sympathetic restoration of the then dilapidated HMS Owl, Part 2 was televised just recently, and if you’d like to see the project for yourself, a little bird told us they’re soon to start B&B……..