NTSPP – 131 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 131

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 131

A Puzzle by Bufo

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NTSPP - 131

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows below.

Apologies for the late arrival of the review.  This was a very enjoyable crossword by Bufo which I solved between entertaining guests today.  I have not had time to add the usual visual delights so apologies in advance for the shorter nature of today’s summary.

Postscript:  I solved this on-line using the AcrossLite version of the crossword and missed the instructions that there is a link between the across answers and two pairs of the down answers.  Big Dave alerted me to this on Sunday morning, but I am busy packing for holidays at the moment.  When I get a moment, I will look at this and try to divine the link.  With words such as TELSTAR, SIDE SADDLE and APACHE, it looks like it may be music related! [see bottom of post for Bufo’s list. BD]

I will be in sunny Spain next week so next Saturday’s treat will be reviewed by Crypticsue.


8 Duchess finally dies in agony – rotten way for a lady to go (10)
{SIDESADDLE} – This way for a lady to go (on horseback) comes from the final letter of duchess followed by an anagram (in agony) of DIES and a word meaning rotten.

9 Confined in prison cell at some time in the past (4)
{ONCE} – Hidden inside (confined) the words PRISON CELL is a word meaning at some time in the past.

10 Baseball pitcher’s third-rate. He won’t have much success (6)
{CLOSER} – This word for a baseball pitcher comes from the third letter of the alphabet (third-rate) followed by a word for someone who will not have much success.

11 Comment (with a wink and a nudge?) on nude in Nuts (8)
{INNUENDO} – This form of suggestive comments is an anagram (nuts) of ON NUDE IN.

12 A person who always votes Conservative must be really sad (4,4)
{TRUE BLUE} – A double definition of a died in the wool Conservative party member might also describe someone who is really sad.

13 Cold and severe with temperature dropping. It’s distressing (6)
{CRYING} – A word for distressing comes from the abbreviation for cold followed by a word meaning severe without the initial T (temperature dropping).

14 Satellite state worried about large republic’s leader (7)
{TELSTAR} – The name of this artificial satellite comes from an anagram (worried) of STATE around the letter L (for large) followed by the first letter (leader) of republic.

16 Man starts to check how to block junk e-mail (7)
{MICHAEL} – Putting the initial letters of Check and How inside (block) an anagram (junk) of E-MAIL gives the name of a man.

19 Fancies more than one wee drink laced with ecstasy (6)
{DREAMS} – A word for fancies comes from a word for two or more small drinks (of whisky) inside which you put the abbreviation for ecstacy.

21 Finding small branch stunted by non-British disease causes gloom (8)
{TWILIGHT} – Remove the last letter (stunted) from a word for a small branch and follow this with a word for disease without the initial B (non-British) to find a word meaning gloom.

23 One’s taking part in show in a state of bliss (8)
{PARADISE} – A word for state of bliss comes from putting an I (one) inside (taking part in) a word for a show.

25 Italian chap’s cross having lost time at first (6)
{ANGELO} – The name of an Italian chap comes from the name of a hybrid of a tangerine and pomelo or grapefruit (a cross) without the initial T (having lost time at first).

26 Quite heavy? That’s not very unusual (4)
{YEAH} – A word or interjection meaning quite (as in I agree) comes from an anagram (unusual) of HEAVY without the V (not very).

27 Isaiah appointed one king from the east for the Jews (10)
{ISRAELITES} – Another word for the Jews comes from the abbreviation used for the book of Isaiah followed by the following (all of which are reversed in the answer – from the east) – a word meaning appointed and I for one and the name of a Shakespearean king.


1 King’s not so good, apparently. Could it be pneumonia? (6)
{KILLER} – The effect of a disease such as pneumonia comes from an abbreviation for King followed by a word that might mean not so good.

2 Once more judge the worth of keeping animals in reserve (8)
{REASSESS} – Put the name of some animals inside the abbreviation for reserve to find a word meaning once more judge.

3 Find butter, cut bread and jam jars. Now you can make jam sandwiches (6,4)
{PATROL CARS} – These jam sandwiches are vehicles so called because of their colourful markings.  Take a word for a small bit of butter and follow this with a type of bread with the final letter removed (cut) and the word described in Cockney rhyming slang as a jam jar to find the answer.

4 Doctor punctures vital organ. He probably needs more training (1-6)
{L-DRIVER} – This inexperienced motorist comes from putting one of the abbreviations for a doctor inside (punctures) one of the organs of the body.

5 Enthusiastic rock band heard on the radio (4)
{KEEN} – A word that sound like the name of the rock band KEANE gives a word meaning enthusiastic.

6 Friend heading off? One’s bound to become sad through having no company (6)
{LONELY} – Put the ONE from the clue inside a four letter word for a friend with the first letter removed (heading off) to give a word meaning sad through having no company.

7 I see C. Dean performing with energy – this? (3,5)
{ICE DANCE} – An anagram (performing) of I C (see)  C DEAN and a final E (energy) gives the sport in which Christopher Dean and Jane Torvill excelled.

13 Arrests miscreant rampaging round the centre of Halifax (10)
{CRIMINATES} – A word meaning arrests comes from an anagram (rampaging) of MISCREANT around the middle letter of Halifax.

15 Be uplifted by drunken tirade having had too much to drink (8)
{EBRIATED} – A word meaning having had too much to drink comes from reversing the BE in the clue (uplifted) and following this with an anagram (drunken) of TIRADE.

17 He’s beginning to expose secret handshake that’s used in Barnet (8)
{HAIRGRIP} – This item used in the hair (barnet) comes from the first letter (beginning) of he followed by a word meaning to expose and a word for a secret handshake.

18 In reality a man needs to be cherished by a prostitute (2,5)
{AT HEART} – A phrase meaning in reality comes from putting HE (man) inside the A from the clue and four letter word for a prostitute.

20 American from Pennsylvaniagripped by pain (6)
{APACHE} – This Native American comes from putting the abbreviation for the state ofPennsylvania inside a word for pain.

22 Shout hard and wave when queen leaves (6)
{HOLLER} – Take the abbreviation for hard and a word for a wave without the initial R (queen) to give a word meaning shout.

24 River is flowing round small island (4)
{ISIS} – This river comes from putting the abbreviations for small and island inside the IS from the clue.

Artist No 1 Hit Year
Brotherhood Of Man Angelo 1977
Shadows Apache 1960
Ne-Yo Closer 2008
Don McLean Crying 1980
Gabrielle Dreams 1993
Spice Girls Holler 2000
Queen Innuendo 1991
Desmond Dekker & Aces Israelites 1969
Adamski Killer 1990
Akon Lonely 2005
Highwaymen Michael 1961
Diana Vickers Once 2010
Coldplay Paradise 2012
Russ Conway Side Saddle 1959
Tornados Telstar 1962
Madonna True Blue 1986
Cover Drive Twilight 2012
Usher featuring Lil’ Jon & Ludacris Yeah 2004

5 comments on “NTSPP – 131

  1. Tricky but a lot of fun – thanks Bufo.

    Favourite was 3d but it took a while for the penny to drop as where I come from we don’t call them jam sandwiches but ‘jam butties’!

  2. Phew! I started off thinking I couldn’t do it at all and ended up finishing it and enjoying it very much – it has taken me a long time though. Two new words for me – 13 and 15d. I’ve heard of the second of those with an “in” at the beginning. I don’t understand the answers that I’ve got for 10 and 27a so will look at the hints later on.
    My favourites include 8, 16 and 25a and 3, 6, and 18d. My last answer and absolute favourite was 26a – really clever, I thought!
    With thanks to Bufo and, in advance, to Prolixic.

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