NTSPP – 050 (Review)

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 050

Old Timers by Radler

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With a Radler puzzle you know you are in for a tough workout with well hidden wordplay and themes cleverly worked into the grid.  This was no exception.  I have a major grumble with a couple of the down clues that do not (for me) satisfy the rules of cryptic cluing.  However, Radler, like the hero of this puzzle, has been known to break a rule or two in pursuit of a rollicking good puzzle.  Let us know your views.


6a,18a How? Either 28, 19+16, 8+10, 30+27, 4+27, 24÷ 15 or 22 perhaps (6,3)
{DOCTOR WHO} – Our old times in the puzzle.  If you were to provide a crossword clue with an anagram indicator to result in the answer HOW, the clue might be the answer to this one.  The wordplay gives the names of several actors who have played the part of our old timer.  The relevant clues are highlighted in green below.

7a Spotted more of winter traveller clutching breast (8)
{SPECKIER} – The answer is a word meaning spotted more (or having more spots).  It comes from the general name of a person who enjoys a winter sport on snowy slopes with a three letter word for breast inside.

11a Charge nothing in trade (5)
{SWOOP} – A word meaning charge comes from a trade (think of Noel Edmunds Multi-Coloured Saturday morning show from many years ago) with an O (nothing) inside.

12a Women’s defence group tracks fighters (3,6)
{WAR PLANES} – These airborne fighters come from a simple word sum of W for women’s, a three letter abbreviation for a WWII defence group and a word meaning tracks (as in country roads).

13a They threaten death, outrage and American casualties (11)
{ENDANGERS} – A word meaning threaten comes from another word sum of a word for death, a word for outrage and a three letter for casualty rooms in America (think of the American TV series).

15a No-one but Auntie’s mother? (3)
{NAN} – You Aunt’s mother might be described by you as this.  Take an N (for no) and add a two-letter article for one (No-one) to find the answer.

16a Gwyn’s over from Llangollen (4)
{NELL} – This Gwyn (a mistress of King Charles) is hidden in reversed form (over) in Llangollen.

18a See 6a.

19a Beast of a husband’s deceit (4)
{HART} – This beast (a type of deer) comes from a word sum of H for husband and a three letter word for deceit.

22a Blubber helps to make fatties obese (3)
{SOB} – A word meaning blubber (as in cry) is hidden inside “fatties obese”

23a Film cast presented with peerage in new production (5,6)
{GREAT ESCAPE} – An anagram of CAST and PEERAGE (in new production) gives the name of a well known war film.


26a Dirty pot can’t keep quiet during telling off (3-6)
{ILL-GOTTEN}- A word meaning dirty (as in illegally obtained) comes from putting OT (pot without the p – can’t keep quiet) inside an anagram (off) of telling.

28a Pastry supplier’s second chef’s first to leave (5)
{BAKER} – A person who supplies pastry (cooked in pies or cakes) comes from a word meaning second (as in a supporter) with the letter C (chef’s first) removed.

29a Parties showed no corruption (8)
{HOEDOWNS} – These parties (with barn dances perhaps) come from an anagram (corruption) of showed no.

30a Invested right during grim depression (6)
{TROUGH} – A word meaning a depression comes from the letter R included inside a word meaning grim.


1d Sad? Yes and no, kind of like a crusade (8)
{ODYSSEAN} – A word meaning like a crusade comes from an anagram of SAD YES NO

2d 3? (1,5)
{A CROWD} – Words fail me.  EXTERMINATE!!!!!  Complete the following sentence – three’s ? ?????.  This is not a cryptic clue.  It is more like one of those annoying quizzes where you have to complete a list of phrases from minimal information.

3d 2? (7)
{COMPANY} – Like 2d, the wrath of Rassilon should have fallen on this clue!  It begins the phrase that ends with 3d.

4d Spike characteristically provides cake (6)
{ECCLES} – A well known character played by Spike Milligan in the Goon show is the same as cake.

5d Resounding refusal in a treatment plant (8)
{BIGNONIA} – This lesser known plant comes from a phase (3, 2) that could mean a resounding refusal followed by an anagram of “in a” indicated by treatment.

8d A traveller returns (3)
{PER} – The old classic “A” meaning for each (apples a £2 a pound), comes from the reversal of the name of a travelling salesman.

9d It’s nothing to the French holding start of schedule up (5)
{RISEN} – A word meaning “up” comes from the French for nothing – think Edith Piaf – with an S (start of schedule) inside it.


10d Having little to follow, time’s precious (4)
{TWEE} – A word for precious comes from a word meaning little following T (for time).

14d Self assembly kit missing top (3)
{EGO} – This word for self comes from a children’s construction kit (with lots of plastic bricks) with the first letter removed.

17d Flirt having no boundaries, snares young lady for wrong publisher (8)
{LIBELLER} – Somebody who publishes a wrong might be described as this.  Take the inside letters of for flirt and inside them add a word for a young lady.

18d Shouted, STOP or there’ll be trouble (3)
{WOE} – A word meaning trouble is a homophone (shouted) of stop (such as may be used when riding a horse.

20d Start off quest breaking your divine rule (8)
{THEARCHY} – A word meaning divine rule comes from an old word meaning your inside which is placed a word meaning quest with the first letter removed.

21d Watering holes covered by unit thereby providing pressure indicators (7)
{ISOBARS} – These pressure indicators shown on weather maps comes from a one letter word for unit, a two letter word for thereby and a word meaning watering holes (as in pubs).

22d Hit broadcast in support of kinky sex worker (5)
{SMITH} – This forge worker comes from a anagram of HIT below an abbreviation for sadomasochism (kinky sex).

23d Pass mark upset a very large number (6)
{GOOGOL} – This large number (10 to the power of 100) comes from a word meaning pass followed by a word meaning a mark (as in a trademark) reversed (upset).

24d Nut having race round camp (4)
{TENT} – A camp (or at least an item that may be found in it) comes from a two letter word for a nut inside the abbreviation of races notably held on the Isle of Man.

25d Request date and time to quit work abroad (3,3)
{ASK OUT} – An expression meaning request a date (that may be made of a young man or lady) comes from a word meaning work with the T (time to quit) removed followed by a word meaning abroad (no inside).

27d A lot like compass points? (3)
{TON} – A word meaning a lot comes from where the needle on a compass would point!


  1. gazza
    Posted January 23, 2011 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    22d I think that SM is just kinky sex, with worker being the definition.
    2d & 3d were the last two answers I got but they made me laugh. Thanks to Radler and Prolixic.

    • Prolixic
      Posted January 23, 2011 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      22. Corrected.

  2. Radler
    Posted January 24, 2011 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    Thank you to everyone for their comments and to Prolixic for his thorough review and explanation of the clues.
    I did wonder how people would react to 2d & 3d, but hopefully most of you were entertained and will let me get away with an occasional (though I admit flagrant) disregard for the rules.
    Incidentally, did anyone spot that “Old Timers”, as well as being a cryptic definition of the theme, could be regenerated as “Time Lords”?

  3. Posted January 24, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    This was great fun, the few rough edges more than made up for by some very witty wordplay observation. Although I got the theme quickly there were some names that had passed me by; but the inclusion of PERTWEE was great, especially as it reminded me of an Alberich puzzle (on his website – not a newspaper one) where he wordplayed it as ‘forward slash’.