Case Study of the month - February
Following a kitchen design...

We follow the kitchen design stage of self builders Simon & Bibby Towler who are currently building their dream home in Cambridgeshire.

Simon & Bibby Towler are building a bespoke Wickhambrook barn and are currently approaching water-tight stage. Their generous plot in Abbotsley, Cambridgeshire will be home to their new contemporary-style Potton barn.

Now seen as the ‘hub' of the home, for many, the kitchen is the most important room in the house. To aid the design process for self builders, Potton partnered with kitchen company, Callerton, to bring you a complimentary design service via. This month's case study follows the Towlers project, specifically their kitchen design.  

Simon & Bibby’s Project

Simon and Bibby initially contacted Cambridge Kitchen & Bathrooms, following a Potton recommendation and after attending a Self Build Academy event.

"We went to one of the NEFF cookery demos at the Gransden show home in Little Paxton at which Cambridge Kitchens were represented" said Simon. 

PHB_Front Cover

Penny, Designer for Cambridge Kitchens then arranged to meet with Simon & Bibby at their kitchen showroom.

“Myself and the Towlers had a good look at the displays and I was able to gauge what sort of look they were after – modern, handle-less, gloss finish with a mix of wood / stained wood, we even picked out some door colours they liked and the contrasting wood finish (dark grey stained), which is quite unusual at this early stage” said Penny.

Design Inspiration

The couple admitted having very few ideas prior to their initial consultation, Simon explained; "We bought a plot which came with Detailed Planning for a slightly customised Wickhambrook barn.  Right from the start we began making visits to the Potton show centre.  The kitchen installed there at the time was a reference point, but as with every other aspect of the forthcoming build we had pored over trade magazines and been to trade shows for inspiration."  

To allow Cambridge Kitchen’s to provide guidance for your new kitchen, they start by asking Potton customers to complete a Design Criteria Document which asks all kinds of relevant questions – giving them an overview of what is required and how the space will be used.

towler construction 1
towler Int construction 2

The design brief...

Front Elevation

“Their brief was quite simple – a kitchen to suit the needs of a family of 4-5 to enable easy, modern, open plan living, seating for 4-5 people and good quality appliances with new technology” explained Penny.

Penny decided that Neff appliances fitted the bill and specified the following:

  • Main oven plus steam oven
  • Combi microwave
  • Large island with induction hob and down draught extractor (the one that pops out of worktop)
  • Quooker tap
  • Dishwasher
  • Large fridge and freezer (but not American) so opted for tall integrated


Good lighting was also important to Simon and Bibby and plinth lighting was specified on the island. The couple liked the Quartz work surfaces so Silestone quartz was specified as a starting point as the budget was unclear in the early stages.

Penny came up with the initial design and costings before meeting the couple again, this time at the Potton Show Centre, where more ideas were discussed.

“Simon and Bibby weren’t keen on the rounded section, so the next few weeks were spent playing with a couple more designs, mostly by email using the Computer Generated Images (CGIs), until we came up with the final plan.”

CGI’s form a very important part of the client decision making process, with many customers unable to visualise their new kitchen. CGI’s also allow Cambridge Kitchen’s to alter designs quickly with the customer present, showing them straight away how an alternative will look in-situ of their new Potton home.

Client Top Tip!

Don’t hesitate to change your minds and re-jig designs repeatedly!  If your kitchen supplier gets touchy with that you have the wrong supplier.  


Once the deign was set, Penny worked with the clients on the materials. The Towlers were open minded and happy to look at different options throughout the process.

"We are confident that Cambridge Kitchens are delivering exactly what we want in terms of quality, design and price.  The Callerton ranges offer plenty of choice", explained Bibby.

We are sure the final result will look amazing and we will bring you an update later on in their build.

Book a Design Consultation...

If you’re self building with Potton and would like some kitchen design advice, you can contact Penny for a free consultation. Consultations can be arranged at either the Potton Show Centre, (St Neots) or any mutually acceptable venue. Please call 01480 403285 to book or email Penny here.

"It has been a help to work with someone who understands the process and sequencing of a Potton self build.  We are new to self-build so having that experience to hand is definitely useful. 

Penny has given us good practical advice and kept a keen eye for design details and consequences that we have missed.  She is good fun to work with and has committed a lot of time to helping us get what we want to achieve."  
                                                                       - Simon Towler, Potton Customer

For more information about Potton’s Partnership with Callerton please click here

Visit Our Show Centre

Callerton Kitchens are on display at the Potton Show Centre in the Gransden show home and in the Wickhambrook Barn. We're open Tues-Fri 9-5 and Saturday's 10-4, no need to book, we look forward to welcoming you where you can enjoy a coffee in the comfortable surrounds of one of our show homes.