DT 27241 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27241 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27241 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

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.

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Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.


1a Furry creature, one engaged in permanent frisking (4,6)
I (one) inside an anagram (frisking) of PERMANENT

9a Woman in touring car gets the bird (6)
A woman’s name inside the two-letter abbreviation given to a touring car

10a Ruined rugby side’s first point (8)
The abbreviation of Rugby Union preceded by a side, of a river perhaps, and followed by the abbreviation of P(oin)T

14a Rapper‘s critic (7)
Double definition – a rapper on a door and a critic

20a Spread trade, getting millions for diamonds? (4)
Start with a word meaning trade and replace the initial D(iamonds) with M(illions)

24a Spin doctor’s new plan for cities — extremely dear (8)
A two-letter abbreviation for the work that a spin doctor does followed by an anagram (new plan for) of CITIES

27a Make the drink go round (4)
Do this to James Bond’s Martini at your own risk!

28a Not like Iris, dismal when drunk (10)
An anagram (drunk) of IRIS DISMAL


1d Trading record made by secretary’s second reserve (8)
A two-letter abbreviation for a senior secretary followed by the S from ‘S, S(econd) and a verb meaning to reserve

3d Old horse detaining you in France (6)
A female horse around (detaining) the French for you (the singular or affectionate usage)

5d People, say, to be kept in denial (8)
People or race around (to be kept in) the Latin abbreviation of say / for example

6d Number suffering become depressed (8)
A Roman numeral followed by some suffering

13d Light-headed composer consuming South American port (9)
Put this English composer, born in Bradford, with a foreign-sounding name around (consuming) the most famous port in South America

17d Used  to be in a job (8)
Two definitions

22d In experiment, A levels may be worked out in the mind (6)
Hidden in the clue

The Crossword Club is now open. I’ll be back at lunchtime (it’s Café Market time again!).  Feel free to leave comments.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put WHOLE or PARTIAL ANSWERS or ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment, else they may be censored!

The Quick crossword pun: (con} + {tree} + (boot)= {contribute}

68 comments on “DT 27241 (Hints)

  1. Many thanks as always. Got the answer to 20a, without fully comprehending the clue!

    1. So did I – didn’t see that at all. Thank you to setter for some intriguing wordplay. And thanks to BD for such a super early posting. Hope Cafe Market went well, and if anyone could help me with my last one to go in (10a) without being sent to the naughty step (especially as CS might not have had time to turn all those courgettes into a fabulous cake!) I’d be most grateful as, even with all the checking letters, I’m being bird-witted at present.

        1. Well I did say I was being bird-witted – I’m so sorry! :oops: Thanks for pointing that out, as his hint is perfectly clear. My problem seems to have arisen from my first checking letter being incorrect and so I just couldn’t make an intelligible word from what I had. So now I have to sort out 1d (done, hurrah!) and it’s complete. Apologies…

          1. You are not alone. I’ve done similar things myself several times in the past. Incidentally I started with the wrong word for 1d but as mine had the same last four letters as the correct answer it didn’t mess up 10a for me :smile:

  2. A very pleasant puzzle to start the weekend. I sailed through the bottom half and then the NE, but got held up a bit in the NW, with 1a my last one in because it took me an eternity to spot the anagram indicator. **/*** today.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and BD.

  3. A 1a ate its way though my next door neighbour’s car electrics last month and caused £3500 worth of damage. She had to get a completely new wiring loom fitted. Then it did the same again last week to her dad’s car! I didn’t even know they liked rubber! Trouble is they’re a protected species over here in Germany, so you can’t set traps for the little blighters. Any advice?

  4. First of all I am proud to announce I am now the possessor of a Daily Telegraph notebook and pen (today’s equivalent of the Blankety Blank Cheque Book and Pen) Amazed to see my name in paper on Monday and to receive said prize on Tuesday. Very rarely send it in and inexplicably did so on way to airport previous Monday. On to today – splendid puzzle. No great problems until the end. Penultimate to go in was 10a despite having all the checking letters. Started to go through the BRB. Had same problem as others with 20a. One obvious answer but found three more words in BRB that would fit including one which was a possible. Thought the answer could be a synonym for first word of clue which it is but simply could not work the rest of it out. Having seen Dave’s hint as Chris Tarrant would say “It’s easy when you know the answer” Some very clever clues – loved 11 and 25a and 6 and 16d. Thanks setter and Dave particular for the explanation of 20a.

    1. Congratulations, WW, and I’m intrigued! Two years ago, I won the Herculis crossword so I have the pen – an Inoxcrom fountain pen manufactured in Barcelona – so do I assume that, if your name is one of the first three to be drawn out of the hat for the prize crossword, you get both the pen and the notepad? I thought that this was an enjoyable puzzle but one which wasn’t too taxing – just as well as, according to the BBC’s weather website, the humidity here [Cheshire] at 5:00 this morning was 96%…

      1. No the first three get a fountain pen. The runners up get a notebook and ballpoint pen – which are inscribed with the DT logo. I have noticed the prizes change over the years. The winners used to get a Mont Blanc pen but no maker is given now, I have an acquaintance who has won two pens (with the Cryptic) the first being Mont Blanc and at least two consolation prizes. He now enters in the name of his 95 year old uncle. I am always intrigued to know how many enter (and if this varies) and how they are selected. Can’t be straight from the mailbag now that some enter on line.

        1. Thank you for the explanation, WW, because it isn’t apparent from the wording in the Telegraph that there’s a ballpoint pen with the notebook. I have a friend who completes the Radio Times crossword on a regular basis and sends it in in the name of his nephew and, coincidentally, we too were musing only last week how the winners of that puzzle are selected.

  5. Morning all another nice day, a little cooler now so it suits me better, a nice crossword today with only one favourite 21d, thanks for hints Dave, I put the wrong answer in at 1d, thinking of port as a reserve!

  6. Thank you setter, an enjoyable puzzle. Managed to solve 20a – not my favourite type of clue. But when you have 3 out of 4 checking letters it does help ! Thanks BD for your hints.

  7. Well, after the super RayT on Thursday, and managing to make a pretty good fist of yesterday’s puzzle, I 23a’ed this one with gusto thinking that I had suddenly become much better at this cryptic crossword lark. Sadly, it seems I am just as thick I as ever was. I managed to complete the SW corner unaided, and had bits and pieces in the other 3 sectors before having to concede defeat and look to BD’s (as ever, excellent) hints. Most of the hints were for ones I had already got, but a few key ones got me going again and I have now finished.

    I have never heard of 1a and I don’t think I would have got 10a or 5d without BD’s hint, but overall I now wonder why I found some of the clues so difficult.

    I enjoyed the tussle – with thanks, as always, to the setter and to BD.

    Is it just me, or would 19d read better as “One who talks of overthrow of ruler etc”?

  8. Only 3 left at lights out last night – 10a, 20a, and 1d – with quite a lot of help from the BRB. But, even when I looked up ruined (10a) in the BRB and the answer was right there the penny didn’t drop. Thought that 20a was what it is, but couldn’t understand why. So, thanks to BD for those two. Was certain I had the first part of 1d (which I did) and with 10a ‘in’ completing it was easy. overall a very enjoyable Saturday puzzle.

  9. This was a 2* difficulty and 3*/4* enjoyment for me. Writing/typing is my problem today – bee stung finger while dead-heading stuff early this morning – will use scissors not fingers in future!
    My last two were 10 and 24a even with lots of letters already in.
    I think the 20a kind of clue seems to be turning up more often at the moment.
    I liked lots of these clues, particularly 11 and 27a.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and BD.

      1. Thanks – have done that now. I tend not to because I’m never sure which way round it is and assume that if you get it wrong you probably make things worse!

        1. Hi Kath!

          A mnemonic for bee and wasp sting treatment :
          – bee starts with B so you want something also at the front of the alphabet hence bicarbonate,
          – wasp starts with W so now go to the end of the alphabet thus vinegar!

          Très simple!

          1. That’s a brilliant way to remember, Derek, thanks! Like Kath I could never remember which was for which :-)

          2. Thank you – I hope that the next time I’m stung by either is so far away that I’ve had time to forget!

            1. Just remember Vasps is Vinegar and you can’t go wrong, unless of course another bee gets you in which case you will have to remember what it is that starts with B that you need to remember. That’s far too many remembers but you get the gist!

                1. :roll: well that’s messed it all up, hasn’t it . . . back to putting nothing on wasp or bee stings for fear of making it all worse. In the meantime my finger is itching like mad . . .

                2. Hi Derek
                  Mnemonic is one of my favourite words .
                  I was once bitten by an aardvark so thought immediately alcohol which I have successfully used for all bites ever since .though never tried it externally .
                  Hope the gout improves and keep happy .
                  Aardvarken in Italian is Orritteropo so god knows what they use .

      2. I bet you learned that when studying for your Girl Guide Emergency Helper Badge

  10. Thanks to Mr Ron and to Big Dave for the hints. I enjoyed this one a lot, but found it tricky, needed the hints for 20&24a. Favourite was 9a. No sign of any thunderstorms soffar in Central London.

    1. Heno, you can’t have thunderstorms in Central London – we want them in wilting Wilts. My runners have become crawlers – full of blackfly despite generous dollops of Fairy Liquid – few flowers and no bees to fertilise. Has anyone got a bee to spare? Good home guaranteed. Didn’t take to the cryptic all that much – NW corner held me up a bit but not for long. Think the “quick” was a bit more bothersome – puzzled by 10A – thought it had to do with food.

      1. The bee you want was on my finger – as far as I’m concerned you can forget about giving it a good home! :sad:

  11. Can someone explain 4d please. I think I have the answer, but I’m confused by the second and third letter of my answer.

    1. Hi Gethyn – welcome to the blog.

      4d City area in ecstasy, showing recovery (9)

      The postal code for the financial centre (city) in London goes inside a synonym of ecstasy.

  12. Pleasant Saturday solve.

    Faves : 8a, 20a, 25a, 28a, 1d, 13d, 15d & 16d,

    We had a welcome thunderstorm this AM – now it is dry again.

  13. Had to resort to the hints for one or two today…..20a 10a etc. for explanations, but managed to complete the crossword. Thank you setter & hinter. We’ve still got sunshine here in N. Yorks…….but for how much longer?

  14. I’ve been doing (trying to do would be more accurate!) the DT Cryptic for years. I’ve only recently discovered the BD Blog – what joy!! My enjoyment has increased no end! Many thanks BD and your fellow Bloggers.

    I thought today’s was a comfortable Saturday puzzle. Along with others I struggled with 20a and 24a so thanks for the hints.

  15. Some of this went in really easily and the remainder took a bit of persevering with.

    Thanks as ever to BD for the hints, most useful and to setter too.

    11a amused me :-)

  16. Well, a most enjoyable puzzle again, we’ve had some super ones this week. I didn’t have a problem getting the answers but a huge problem knowing why! 1a, for instance, missed the anagram completely, 10a needed the explanation, and, like most, had no idea why 20a was right but it had to be. Thanks to setter and hinter.

  17. I struggled with this one until the nippers had their lunchtime sleep, I dozed for an hour, and hey presto! I still couldn’t di it. So many thanks for the hints – appreciated as always.

  18. Thoroughly enjoyed today’s bout. Some great aargh moments. Rain has set in here in Barrybados. Sorry to hear about the sting, Kath, though I suppose we should be grateful there are bees around.

    1. Our garden is absolutely full of bees – so far not too many wasps but I associate large numbers of them with August and September when all the plums and apples are ripe.

  19. It took me some time to get going on this but suddenly all fell into place. I thought this a very enjoyable puzzle.Thanks to setter.

  20. Very straightforward romp today and rather enjoyable. Even managed to complete a Times crossword so I must be doing something right!

    I have a general question for you all. I find that if I am stumped by a clue, even though I might come back to it hours later or even days later, I still seem to have the same thought-processes and so the clue remains unresolved. So what do others do to counteract this?

    1. I have to say that this, usually, doesn’t happen to me. Perhaps you should leave it for a bit longer and the answer will just pop up when you don’t even know that you’re thinking about it.
      I have been known to take collie for afternoon walk with a quickie pun that I just can’t see going round in my head – mutter, mutter, mutter (one day the men in the white coats will be called to carry me off) and then it all just makes sense.
      Good luck – hope your problem sorts itself out.

    2. Doesn’t happen to me either. I can stare at a clue for ages. When I go back to it especially after a night’s sleep it is there in front of my eyes, as if someone has pencilled it in.

    3. You have to be careful though – I went to bed having almost finished test solving a puzzle with a couple more to get and woke Mr CS up at 5.30 am by shouting out ‘Handbag’ which was the solution my cryptic grey matter had obviously been working on while I slept. I was more impressed than he was! :D

    4. This often happens to me, Roger, I become stupidly repetitive in my thought process.
      I stop and very deliberately think hard by turning the clue inside out and upside down to get a new angle.

  21. Busy day so only got to see today’s challenge quite late but all done relatively easily favourite being 6d. Pouring with rain in east Herts.

  22. Lovely hints much appreciated helping overcome my solver’s block. Nice blend of clue types today.

  23. Glad I’m not the only one not to have heard of 1a and I’m not sure I go along with the use of “frisking” as indicator in this clue nor indeed meaning of “spread” in 20a clue. Not one of my favourite puzzles thus ***/**. Some rain (not enough) and one flash of lightning so far in W. Sussex.

    1. I thought ‘spread’ for 20a was fine. Have heard of a 1a but the anagram took me some time to get. We’ve had about 1/2″ of rain since 6.00pm which will go a long way towards cheering the garden up. No ‘thunder and frightening’ yet but some forecast overnight.

  24. Nice puzzle, I guess.I didn’t like 1d much. My course has been 12 hour days and wonderful but exhausting , I almost had a melt down last night.

  25. I thought this week’s puzzle was tricky/difficult and a very satisfying one to complete. Managed it all without BD’s hints but have to confess I needed his explanation for 10a (I thought that using the side of a river as the clue for the first part of 10a’s answer was VERY obscure! I got the answer including the Rugby Union and “point” bits, but needed the explanation for the “side” part of the clue). And, like many others, I got 20a but not the reasoning (substituting “millions” for “diamonds”)

    I had to Google my answer for 1d as we don’t get those furry creatures in South Africa, and found that they are native to Europe.

    I thought 24a was a “very dear” clue and was nearly in ecstacy over 4d!

    1. Welcome to the blog big red

      25a Holiday that’s a signal for disaster (6)
      It’s a double definition – a Bank Holiday and an international distress signal

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