DT 26316 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26316

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26316

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Another excellent puzzle from the Telegraph’s Wednesday Wizard.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


1a    Form of transport trouble after third of strikes (4)
{RAIL} – this form of transport is found by putting a word meaning to trouble or afflict after the third letter of stRikes

3a    Warning sound mainly preceding childminder’s musical gathering (10)
{HOOTENANNY} – take all but the last letter of a warning sound used at sea and follow it with a childminder to get a party with folk-singing and sometimes dancing (musical gathering)

Any excuse to play Seasick Steve – here he is on the Jules Holland 3a

ARVE Error: need id and provider

8a    Daughter, gasping for breath crossing line, faded (8)
{DWINDLED} – start with D(aughter) and follow with a word meaning gasping for breath; put this around L(ine) to get a word meaning faded

9a    Finish, annually, welcoming a time at home (6)
{PATINA} – a gloss or sheen on wooden furniture produced by age and polishing (finish) is constructed from the abbreviation for per annum (annually) around (welcoming) A T(ime) and a synonym for at home

10a    A change incorporating single flier’s home (6)
{AVIARY} – A is followed by a word meaning to change and then I (a single) is inserted to get a large cage for keeping birds (flier’s home)

11a    Pair of reps make an effort to hold back (8)
{RESTRAIN} – the first two letters (pair of) RE(PS) followed by a verb meaning to make an effort gives to hold back

13a    Cash from the hole in the wall? (3,5)
{PIN MONEY} – a cryptic definition of extra cash earned by a someone to spend on incidental or luxury items – think about what you have to enter in order to withdraw from a hole in the wall

14a    Shaving brushes ultimately turn bad and start to rot (6)
{SLIVER} – to get a shaving or splinter start with the last letter (ultimately) of brusheS, reverse (turn) a word meaning bad and end with the start to Rot

16a    Toy gun found by base of target (6)
{TRIFLE} – a word meaning to toy is created by putting a gun after the last letter (base) of targeT

19a    Succeeds in salvaging by working miracles (8)
{RECLAIMS} – a word meaning succeeds in salvaging is an anagram (working) of MIRACLES

21a    Badly phrased, requiring additional energy — should be worked again (8)
{RESHAPED} – put an anagram (badly) of PHRASED around (requiring additional) E(nergy) to get a word meaning worked or formed again

22a    Bright, but there’s no answer to chopper (6)
{CLEVER} – a word meaning bright or intelligent is created by removing the A(nswer) from a chopper

23a    Unfortunate to be included in regular column (6)
{PILLAR} – an adjective meaning unfortunate is placed inside regular or standard, as in a score for a hole on a golf course, to get a column

24a    Match team reported on strike (8)
{COINCIDE} – a word meaning to match is formed from a homophone of a sports team after (that “on” construct in an across clue again!) to strike, as in to manufacture currency

25a    An adjustable spanner? (10)
{DRAWBRIDGE} – a cryptic definition of a structure spanning a river or road that can be raised or lowered

26a    Better to be rejected before tense agreement (4)
{PACT} – take a word meaning to better or surpass, reverse it (to be rejected) and put it before T(ense) to get an agreement


1d           Showing embarrassment before reprimand – what a welcome! (3,6)
{RED CARPET} – combine the colour of showing embarrassment with a word meaning to reprimand to get a welcome for celebrities

Lucy Clarkson doesn’t look at all embarrassed standing on the 1d and suggesting what Jodie and Jordan should kiss!

2d           Police scope for expansion? (4,3,2,3,3)
{LONG ARM OF THE LAW} – a cryptic definition of a phrase used to describe the police

ARVE Error: need id and provider

3d           Calm and peaceful hotel — a lucky town, oddly (7)
{HALCYON} – a word meaning calm and peaceful comes from H(otel) followed by A and the odd letters of LuCkY tOwN

4d           Tidy worker in hospital (7)
{ORDERLY} – a double definition

5d           Reveals models supporting former partner (7)
{EXPOSES} – a word meaning reveals is a charade of models, as in sits, under (supporting, as this is a down clue, a former partner

6d           A minor altercation over a brew? (1,5,2,1,6)
{A STORM IN A TEACUP} – a cryptic definition of an idiom meaning a small event that has been exaggerated out of proportion

ARVE Error: need id and provider

7d           Hunger getting attention in the borders of Yemen (5)
{YEARN} – a verb meaning to hunger or desire is built up by putting a word meaning attention inside the first and last letters (borders) of YemeN

12d         Water bugs with no head  (3)
{ICE} – frozen wate is obtained by removing the first letter (with no head) from some bugs

15d         Bring back right to planned rest cure (9)
{RESURRECT} – a word meaning to bring back to life is built up from R(ight) and an anagram (planned) of REST CURE

17d         Feel sorry for reprobate dismissing love (3)
{RUE} – a word meaning to feel sorry for is constructed by removing (dismissing) the O (love) from a reprobate

18d         Ruler of Rome — pre revolutionary (7)
{EMPEROR} – this ruler is an anagram (revolutionary) of ROME PRE

19d         Shrank from former Italian leader wearing scarlet (7)
{REDUCED} – a word meaning shrank is generated by putting Mussolini’s (former Italian leader) nickname inside (wearing) the colour of scarlet

20d         Old murderer found in church gets drug (7)
{COCAINE} – put O(ld) and the first ever murderer inside the Church of England to get a drug

21d         Lightning attack, absorbing pressure (5)
{RAPID} – lightning or very fast is derived by putting an attack around P(ressure)

Crypticsue hopes to return next week.

60 comments on “DT 26316

  1. I’m hoping to possibly get some advice. We’re off on holiday and I’m still not able to solve these crosswords without my thesaurus, dictionary, crossword solver (and occasionally reference dictionary). Does anyone use one of those electronic all in one things they can recommend? Many thanks

    1. I’ve got the Seiko Oxford Crossword Dictionary and it’s okay. I mainly use my Chambvers crossword dictionary but would find it good on holidays / in hospital.

      I know thaqt Mary has an electronic device but not sure which one and she swears by it. I am sure she will be around shortly.

    2. Helen

      I’m sure Mary will tell you the one she uses regularly.

      My own personal preference is the Chambers Concise Crossword Dictionary (CWR-108) from Franklin. It has word and synonym searches a well as an anagram solver. The main drawback is that it lacks definitions. The big advantage for Telegraph solvers is that it is based on Chambers Dictionary.

      1. Hi Helen I have the one that Dave has mentioned and also the Concise Oxford Thesaurus by Seiko, I find both very good but as Dave says the Franklin one does not have definitions, but I would be happy to take either, are you going anywhere nice? have a great time wherever :)

    3. Helen, if you have an iPhone the Chambers dictionary and thesaurus apps are well priced and extremely useful. They can crunch anagrams if required and suggest insertion words in phrases (if you are close). As ever the word list is pretty authoritative. It regularly confirms bizarre flora and fauna and plants that trip one up in the Toughie – or at least they confirm a suspicion from the wordplay.

        1. Thanks for your help everyone. It seems CWR108 is out of stock and CWM108 is the new one. It calls itself Franklin Value Crossword Solver and is £16.99 in Argos. Do you think this would be good enough or do you think it’s designed for non-cryptic crosswords? I am loathe to buy one and then have to go out and get another…

          1. I have looked this up on Google Helen and it seems pretty good, it is recommended for quick and cryptic puzzles, with antonyms and synonyms, the only thing I’m not sure of is if it has an anananagram solver, personally I would not want one that hasn’t, maybe someone else knows??

                1. Oh I see it now, how could I have managed that?? It’s quite nice though don’t you think?

  2. Got hung up the longest on 12d and 14a for some reason and kicked myself when I got them. My favourites were 3a and 25a.

  3. I didn’t enjoy this as much as yesterday’s. The clues seem laboured and full of side tracks.3d was a long haul and 12d I think was from the Beano 1956.
    I don’t know which was worse today, this or the Toughie, no the Toughie is definitely the worst.
    No Favs

    1. Sorry, just had a review of what I said, I suppose it’s not that bad. I still can’t work out 17d although I have got the answer right.
      The Toughie is still awful

  4. I only got hung up on 14a because the bar I added in the intersecting down phrase made my I look like a T – D’OH!
    The usual great puzzle from Jay with the excellently diverting 9a as favourite.
    Thanks to BD and to Jay for the puzzle.

  5. Hi Dave, have managed without the blog but need it to understand a few, used all my aids as usual………one day maybe. once again a little work and ‘perservation’ got me through fav clue 13a, got held up in bottom r/h corner as I spelt 15d with a double s!! not like me to get my spelling/words mixed up!! :)

  6. Needed BD’s help to understand why I had 1a , otherwise completed this over a (very) late breakfast, usually takes me all day with some help from the blog. All just seemed to fall into place today.
    Looking forward to your new word of the day Mary. You may have started something big.

    1. It was cryptic sue that started it weetie with her numberals, i am just adding to it!! we could have spot the new word contest, already had one from Lea today ‘thaqt’ got a nice look about it!

      1. Watched A Clockwork Orange on the box last night and am still wondering how I can fit this into an everyday converation….

        “Yarbles! Great bolshy yarblockos to you. I’ll meet you with chain or nozh or britva anytime, not having you aiming tolchocks at me reasonless. Well, it stands to reason I won’t have it.”


  7. A nice CW and mostly enjoyable. Favourits 2d, struggled on 4d for some unknown reason (one of the easiest clues) Thanks BD & Jay

  8. 24a didn’t happen for me. Apart from that I thought it pretty straightforward. Fully agree with the BD rating. Enjoyed 3a and 9a. Trying hard not to create any new words for Mary!

  9. Sterling stuff from Jay – usual high quality satisfying puzzle. Many thanks to him and to BD for the notes.

  10. Quite nicely clued, but really rather easy, as times on CluedUp seem to indicate too. Having had a quick read of the Toughie review, I think I’ll try Sunday’s Cryptic instead, which I’ve saved up for sometime this week. Hope it’s up to usual quality…

  11. A rare event for me today as I managed to complete this without resorting to the blog. I was on the right track for 25a – it just took me a while to work out the answer. Like Lea I got stuck on 12d and 14a but once the penny dropped with 12d, 14a fell into place. Favourite was 3a – thank goodness I am a Jools Holland watcher!

  12. Not on the wavelength today. I started late and needed a good deal of persevation, not to mention perspiration, to solve all but the NW quarter. I finished thanks to the hints, but didn’t enjoy it.

    1. Well done to finish Franny, I always find if I start late I struggle more, don’t really know why – ‘perservation’ pays in the end :)

  13. Just the right sort of puzzle for sitting in the sun on a sandy beach in the middle of a vast castle created by nieces and great nieces and nephews. Found the downs easier to get to start with than the acrosses but it soon all fell into place.

      1. Minnis Bay near Birchington in Kent. Its lovely – sandy beach, safe for children, free parking, nice loos,a wonderful place to buy food too., and you get to sleep in your own bed after the fun.

  14. Found this really straightforward today, unlike the toughie! Favourite clues were 13a and 25a (Don’t ask)

  15. Nice challenge was this and all done save 3a which is a word I have never heard before. My memory of a musical gathering is the school disco which was, on reflection, quite a dire experience!

  16. Thanks again for tips about electronic stuff, I’ll make my purchase tomorrow (I can’t do a fortnight without the crossword!). I managed today’s crossword and enjoyed it. The only one I needed help with was 8a – just couldn’t get there. I liked 3d – I’m still at the stage when spotting those makes me feel good!

    1. Helen, Kath’s commetn below makes a lot of sense. If you are forced to ‘go it alone’ without the usual crosswording aids you may surprise yourself. If you can’t get the gizmo then take a pen and write the anagram letters in a circle or else pick out the charade bits on paper as well. Good Luck and have a good holiday.

      1. totally agree gnomey I sometimes think I resort to my books etc too easily, have a good time Helen :)

  17. No internet ALL day which made the ‘persevation’ HAVE to kick in – would possibly have resorted to the hints had it been possible. However, had to do it, to use a family expression coined by youngest daughter when she was quite little, “all my own self”!! And managed! Screwed up 1a by putting in ‘wide’ as the first word of 2d, which also made 8a difficult to say the least! Sorted that one out. 3a was a new word to me but ‘invented’ something close and looked it up. I’d say it was a very enjoyable crossword, agree with the rating, and really quite glad to have had to go it alone. Just goes to prove that I can if I have to!! Thanks to all.

  18. Quite enjoyed todays but got stuck on 3a had to look at the hints when I came in from work at 4am, off to bed much happier now !!

  19. I enjoyed 9A 14A 22A & 12D. Really liked DRAWBRIDGE but thought 3A weak as a hooter is not a warning sound but the thing that makes it so should be something like “Warning sounder at sea” This could also lead solvers to thinking that it was an anagram!

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