DT 26002 – Hints

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26002 – Hints

Selected hints by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment: ***

A better-than-usual prize puzzle that, for me at least, was a little spoilt by cluing a place as “in France” when the place concerned has historical significance that surely could have been worked into the clue.

Don’t forget that you can give  your assessment of the puzzle.  Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.  Peter Biddlecombe’s full review of this puzzle will be published at 12.00 on Thursday, 13th August.


1a Behind health centre, place for allotment (10)
Just put a place, for example one where films and documentaries are made away from the studio, behind, i.e. after, the centre two letters of health and, Hey Presto! you have an allotment, but not the kind in which to grow vegetables

10a Pair always ask earnestly (4)
The short answers are often the hardest to get – here you have a charade consisting of the abbreviation for pair followed by a Northern word for always giving a word meaning to ask earnestly (in church maybe)

13a Heel Patty injured during thoughtful communication (9)
I don’t think the surface reading of this one will deflect you from realising that the first two words are anagram fodder!

18a Read cut-out article by excellent tabloid (3-3)
What colour is the banner, and where is it on a tabloid?

27a Abstract style of revolutionary patriot going round California (7,3)
An abstract style using geometrical forms precisely executed and so arranged that movement of the observer’s eye, or inability to focus, produces an illusion of movement in the painting – if you don’t understand that then join the club! – it’s an anagram of PATRIOT placed around CAL(ifornia)

28a Think well of Liberal president! (4)
The president is Dwight D Eisenhower – how are you going to fit that into a short wordplay?


1d One accepted first neurotic complaint (4)
The one here is on a playing card – insert the first letter of neurotic to get a complaint that mainly affects teenagers

3d Complete transport from end to end (5,7)
Here a word meaning to complete is a charade of to transport or convey and a synonym for end to end

7d Heather almost trapped deserter, wandering (7)
Erica is another name for heather – that’s a hint, not the answer!

11d Just soft, not grand (but loud?) (7,5)
A charade, this time of words meaning just, as in law-abiding, and soft, as in music, leads you to an instrument which could be grand, but not here

19d Dingy church in France (7)
Combine synonyms for dingy and a Scottish church to get this place in France that thousand were desperate to leave in 1940

If that’s not enough to help you finish, just ask and I will see what I can do. 

Please don’t put whole or partial answers in your comment, else they may be censored!



  1. Lizwhiz
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyed this especially 8d and 11d ;)

  2. nanaglugglug
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Hi BD – Any ideas about the wordplay on 23a? We got it right but have no idea why- just about to have one with lunch, just to test the truth of the clue! Cheers!

    • Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

      Well, drink my health when you raise that *********, Nana

      • nanaglugglug
        Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

        silly me!! Always do, Big Dave!

    • mary
      Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      I think you drink to somebodys health in a ********* ????? is it that simple??

  3. mary
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Hi Dave
    completed about 3/4 without your help but got stuck on the bottom lefthand corner..didn’t like 19d or 28a but liked 8d, 11d and 20a, thanks once again for all the help

  4. Lea
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Either this was really an easy one or I have learned more than I thought. Broke my own personal record on completing it.
    My favourite was 11d.

    • Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

      I liked the clue, but did it really need the two words in brackets as the “forte” bit is not in the answer?

      • mary
        Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

        mmmmmm that’s what my brother said, but I liked it the way it was :)

  5. Lea
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    BD – I agree – bit superfluous.
    BTW – thanks for the site and for all the good help (plus good comments from other people). It has raised my enjoyment and understanding.

  6. Will
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t know 2d was a word other than for my children. But lots to like here.

    • Peter
      Posted August 8, 2009 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

      I was not aware ******* was a real word, although it is a surname.

      • Posted August 9, 2009 at 12:19 am | Permalink

        Chambers gives both of the comparitives and the corresponding superlatives.

  7. Little Dave
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Once again the easiest of the week by miles and done in less than 15 minutes.

    • mary
      Posted August 8, 2009 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

      I wish……………:)

  8. bigboab
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Pretty easy but quite enjoyable, liked 19d. I do these crosswords week in and week out but never submit them, am I daft or what, I just like doing them.

  9. Little Dave
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    High bigboab. I have been religiously entering the prize crossword for about 13 years – I even used to post them when overseas when I knew there was no chance of the entry arriving in time!! I have had two letters printed though!

  10. Peter
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyed today’s but stuck on the *** *** tabloid! What is the second word, hot, dog, rod?

    • gazza
      Posted August 8, 2009 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

      Hi Peter and welcome to the blog.
      Whereabouts on the front page of a tabloid do you normally get a splash of red ?

  11. Peter
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Yes we figured it out eventually, with a little help from Mr Chambers! Thanks.

  12. James
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    An enjoyable crossword that wasn’t to difficult. My favourite clues were 8d, 18a and 27a. I did not like 23a.

  13. chris
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

    Great blog but am still stumped by 15a…

  14. chris
    Posted August 8, 2009 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    Thanks – I have it now !

    • Posted August 8, 2009 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Chris

      Obviously I used 13 across to transmit the answer!

  15. Posted August 9, 2009 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Hi BD,
    Thanks for your hint(s). Got 1d & able to verify by your words.
    Seemed a bit easier, but maybe I am honing the technique?????

  16. alzima
    Posted August 9, 2009 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Dumb or what?…can’t see 26 across at all.

    I like the fact that you give clues as to the answer without actually giving it…makes me feel less of a cheat!!

    • Posted August 9, 2009 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog alzima

      In 26 across, the definition is to leave, and it’s a charade of a short word for a former partner and “the very item”.

      BTW The hints-only posts are for prize puzzles.

      • alzima
        Posted August 9, 2009 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

        Thanks!…Now why couldn’t I see that.Grrr!!

  17. raz
    Posted August 9, 2009 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    avast i loved 15a!

    • Posted August 9, 2009 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

      And a hearty welcome to you Raz

  18. Geekgirl
    Posted August 9, 2009 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    I love this site, thank you so much!

    I enjoyed 26002. Loved 9a and 29a.

    Still stuck on 25d, though. Can you help, please?

    Thanks again

    • Posted August 9, 2009 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      And I love new people coming to the site Geekgirl

      25 down is a double definition. To tarry is to wait, and a guy is a rope used to hold a tent in position. It’s probably better to think about the first definition.

      “To bed, to bed” said Sleepy Head,
      “No, tarry awhile” said Slow.
      “Put on the pot” said Greedy Guts,
      “Let’s sup before we go.”

  19. Dr Mark
    Posted August 10, 2009 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    I can’t get 14d. No-one above seems to have struggled with it. Any help out there. I’m pretty sure what the second word is, but the first is beyond me.

  20. Dr Mark
    Posted August 10, 2009 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Don’t worry – two seconds after posting plea for help it came through to me. Spooky – could even be 13a!!!!

  21. john
    Posted August 10, 2009 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Hi Dave

    Stuck on 6a telegraph 26002


    • Posted August 10, 2009 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog john

      It’s always the short words that cause the most trouble.

      This one is a double definition. Might as in power, muscle and one interpretation of Ian Botham’s nickname. Complain as in moan, grumble.

      It’s difficult to say more, but I hope that helps.

  22. john
    Posted August 10, 2009 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    Pretty obvious realy
    Must have still been asleep Sunday morning