DT 27285 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27285

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27285

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from California Cross in South Devon, where the rain is persisting down from a uniformly leaden sky.

It may just be the holiday feeling, but I found this more difficult than recent Tuesday offerings, hence the *** rating, though when I’d finished I couldn’t really see where the difficulty had been.  22a was the last one in.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined.

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           Go and get chef’s special — about time! (5)
{ FETCH } Anagram (special of CHEF, with Time inserted.

4a           Beauty queen kidnapped by youth with tag on (8)
{ LABELLED } Another word for a beauty queen, often prefaced by ‘bathing’, inside a youth or boy.

10a         Order tarts with herb filling — that’s appetising (7)
{ STARTER } A course of a meal which may be described as an appetiser is made up of an anagram (order) of TARTS followed by the middle letters of h ER b.

11a         Target outbreak of mice found in a particular area (7)
{ ENDEMIC } A target or aim, followed by an anagram(outbreak) of MICE.

12a         Moderate Tory claiming party leader was in tears (4)
{ WEPT } A moderate Tory, especially one who disagreed with Margaret Thatcher, with the first letter of Party inside.

13a         One’s spoken in a whisper since I had Ecstasy (5)
{ ASIDE } A stage whisper, made up of a word meaning since, the contracted form of ‘I had’ and the common abbreviation for the drug Ecstasy.

14a         Chelsea and Villa wingers fizz (4)
{ CAVA } This sparkling wine is made up of the first and last letters (wingers) of C helse A and V ill A.

17a         Lad got coffee or rum — it brings optimism (4-4,6)

19a         Revealing article, ought to put in bid (3-3-8)
{ OFF-THE-SHOULDER } The definite article and a synonym of ‘ought’ inside a bid of the sort you might make to acquire a property, giving a description of a revealing piece of clothing.

22a         Bonus being denied run but gaining a point (4)
{ PEAK } Remove the R (denied run) from a sort of bonus or extra income from an employment, and replace it with A (from the clue), getting the point of a mountain.

23a         Violet Elizabeth’s audible yearning for piece of chicken (5)
{ THIGH } This joint of chicken sounds like an expression of yearning from Violet Elizabeth, who famously lithped her way through the Just William stories of Richmal Crompton.

24a         Shop for pen (4)
{ COOP } Double definition, the first being a shop present on most High Streets (though it probably ought to be hyphenated (2-2); the second being a pen for animals, especially those mentioned in 23a.

27a         Father accepts pointless risk to provide spice (7)
{ PAPRIKA } Remove the S from RI(S)K and put the result inside a Victorian father.

28a         Leave room, hearing what cheese-makers do (4,3)
{ MAKE WAY } A phrase meaning ‘to leave room for someone to pass’ is a homophone (hearing) of what cheese makers might do besides making curds.

29a         Poorly peer eating beef perhaps to fill up (8)
{ PERMEATE } Anagram (poorly) of PEER with the food product of which beef is an example inside it.

30a         Analyse horror film in need of ending (5)
Newspaper version – Work out horror film in need of ending (5)
{ PSYCH } Remove the final O from Hitchcock’s famous film.


1d           She swears she could be sole partner (8)
{ FISHWIFE } A female proverbially notorious for bad language, made up from the sort of creature that a sole is, and a life partner.

2d           Tramp‘s sea trip abandoned (7)
{ TRAIPSE } Anagram (abandoned) of SEA TRIP.

3d           Chianti with odd exceptions English loathe (4)
{ HATE } Take the even-numbered letters of c H i A n T i and add English.

5d           Where the hunt is unlikely to be exceeding expectations (5,2,3,4)
{ AHEAD OF THE GAME } Since a hunt is, by definition, chasing after game, it is unlikely to be found in this position.

6d           Undergarment is timeless yet current (4)
{ EDDY } Remove the initial T (timeless) from a one-piece undergarment worn by women, to get a swirling current in water.

7d           Chatter and endlessly mull over love — what a pain! (7)
{ LUMBAGO } A three-letter word for chatter is placed in front of MUL(L) with its final letter removed. The result is then reversed (over) and the letter which looks like a love score at tennis is added.

8d           Share of hacienda? Chalet? Country cottage abroad? (5)
{ DACHA } … especially in Russia. Hidden in the clue.

9d           Annoyed I cut tango — it shows promise (5,4,5)
{ CROSS ONE’S HEART }  A charade made up of an adjective meaning annoyed, the number represented by I in Roman numerals, a verb meaning to cut (especially the wool off a sheep), and the letter represented by Tango in the NATO alphabet.

15d         Stone with bands a European label backed (5)
{ AGATE } A (from the clue) followed by a reversal of European and another word for label.

16d         Drop precious Cru Beaujolais bottles (5)
{ SCRUB } Hidden in the clue.

18d         Stumble over fringes of tapestry and church’s painted panels (8)
{ TRIPTYCH } A set of three painted panels, made up of a verb meaning to stumble, followed by the first and last letters (fringes) of T apestr Y and C hurc H.

20d         Neurotic woman in twenties? (7)
{ FLAPPER } A term applied to young women in the 1920s could also describe someone who gets into a tizz when faced with a problem.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

21d         Party’s case for other approach giving us access (7)
{ DOORWAY } The usual crossword party followed by the first and last letters (case) of O the R and a word for the approach road to a place.

22d         Appear to get Dad out of bed (3,2)
{ POP UP } An informal word for Dad, followed by the description of someone who’s out of bed.

25d         Mention Kindle former wife dropped (4)
{ CITE } The usual abbreviation for a former wife or husband is removed from a verb meaning to kindle or arouse the emotions.

26d         Leadership change for political party in spring (4)
{ SKIP } Change the first letter of Mr Farage’s party to get a verb meaning to spring.

The Quick Crossword pun { LACK }{ ERR }{ DAZE }{ SICKLE } = { LACKADAISICAL }

65 comments on “DT 27285

  1. The paper this morning had a funny wrap round advertisement thingy which I assumed included the back page as well. Once I had rescued the last two pages of the paper from the recycling bin (Grrr), I found that the crossword was one of those that seemed to take a while to solve but actually didn’t. (Perhaps I was wearing the right hat ;) )

    Thanks to DT and the Tuesday Mysteron. No thanks at all to the HSBC and the advertising dept of the Telegraph.

    1. Same for me! And yes, I agree with Grrr! Today is our rubbish collection day, but fortunately they had already been by the time I had put the back pages of today’s paper in the bin.

      Yesterday I was out all day and returned mid-evening to find the Daily Mail had been delivered instead of the Telegraph :-( thereby preventing me from even seeing yesterday’s puzzle.

      They say things happen in threes. What will it be tomorrow?

      1. You are a lucky Bunny. My local newsagent stopped delivering papers years ago. So I have to walk 300 yards every morning to fetch my Telegraph but it does mean there’s no chance of my receiving the wrong paper. And I suppose it does give me a bit of pre-breakfast exercise.

          1. A mile away. You are a very lucky Bunny. My local Presse magazine is 7 kilometres away and they don’t deliver newspapers here. In fact, wer’e lucky to get the post

            1. You think that’s a long way! We’re the other side of the world! As the third Yorkshireman might have said. :)

              1. And I’m a few thousand miles away from the corner newsagent…but these days thankfully just a click away from the DT. Love that internet.

    2. Yes – me too with the paper. I hadn’t even noticed what the silly flappy bits were about anyway so perhaps not a very effective advertisement – or 0/10 for my powers of observation. :sad:

    3. I agree! Did not even read it. Also I get peeved when the crossword is relegated to inside the back page to accommodate a full page advertisement – happening more regularly these days. Plays havoc on a windy platform. Crossword today was a gentle challenge but thoroughly enjoyable too.

  2. Lots of chuckles with this puzzle and some tricky word-plays too. 22a and 23a were our last two in. 26a took us a while to parse, but a bit of electronic searching came up with the (new to us) party. Thought that the four long answers that crossed in the middle all had clever constructions. Good fun.
    Thanks Mr Ron and DT.

  3. I agree this was a little trickier than recent Tuesday puzzles, but i found it much more entertaining too.
    3*/4* for me, Many thanks to setter, and to Deep Threat.

  4. All present and correct – I was particularly interested in the cryptic explanation of 9d – I wouldn’t have worked that out in a month of Sundays – thanks for that!

    Good fun crossword!

  5. I must have my thick head on today found this a real struggle & needed a lot of help, never heard of 18D & 24A was a tad naughty other stores are available.Many thanks to DT for riding to
    My rescue.

  6. I agree with DT’s rating of ***/*** for a challenging but enjoyable puzzle, which I managed to complete without help.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to DT.

  7. Lovely stuff. A good workout before the start of my day. I particularly liked 23A, 6D, 18D and 25D. Last one in was 29A, just because I was trying to be too clever with the beef part. until the obvious hit me between the eyes. I appreciated the explanation for 12A, although the answer couldn’t have been anything else, and for 9D. Many thanks to the setter and to DT for the review.

  8. Nous somme de retour du sud de la France avec un feeling of being very cold. Brrrr

    Who ever designed today’s front page deserves to get his (or her) useless carcass down to the nearest job centre, I really pitied people trying to commute today (not a phrase that I ever thought would cross my lips). Rant over.

    Started off superbly today but then gradually ground to a halt until a flash of inspiration meant I managed to get all the long ‘uns and the rest fell into place relatively easy after that.

    Nice to see 18D making an appearance.

    1. Carry on ranting, Skempie, I’m with you every inch of the way. But have you also noticed recently how many double full page spreads there are of advertisements? We must be paying for them, and appear to be getting less news besides, or am I not adding it all up properly?

      1. Magmull. Au contraire! The Advertisers pay loads and loads of money for a double-page spread!.

        In a 40 page paper there are lots and lots of journalists to be paid … without the revenue from adverts it would be impossible to keep the price of the paper so(?) low!

        (I wonder if the Crossword Setters get an equitable share of the profits? There must be many people who buy the paper just for the crossword! )

        1. Aaaah, thank you for that, now I can sleep easy at nights. I’m afraid with all the horrible news that is swirling around these days I tend to read less and less of the news and am only too glad when the crossword is reached.

        2. In that case the advertisers are wasting their money – I hadn’t even noticed what all the extraneous stuff was about until CS pointed it out – just thought it was in the way.

  9. Very enjoyable puzzle, a bit tricky in places ! thank you setter. I liked 14a and 24a. New word for me at 18d – or has it been in before and I have forgotten. Thank you DT for your hints and photos.

  10. Loved too many clues to list – thank you Setter, for a super start to the day. And thank you, DT, for great hints, but most especially for the terrific clip of dancing flappers…. Now where on earth did I put my beads … :-)

  11. I agree that it was a bit trickier than Tuesdays are sometimes – 3* for difficulty and 4* for enjoyment.
    Once I’d fought my way through the paper and found the crossword I really enjoyed it.
    I needed the hint to explain 9d which was my last one in. I’ve never heard of the 6d undergarment – doesn’t even bear thinking about – so spent a while trying to make 6d ‘tide’ until I got 4a. 22 and 24a took a bit of head scratching.
    I liked 11 and 23a and 5d. My favourite was 20d.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and Deep Threat.
    Chilly, grey and wet here today – going to try Toughie later.

      1. Oh good – I’ve done some but seem to have ground to a complete halt – will carry on ‘perservating’ before running to the other place for some help.

  12. Je suis d’accord with all the derogatory comments about the HSBC “flappy bit” on today’s paper – impossible to hold onto in a chair let alone on a crowded train! Perhaps I should protest and change my account now that it’s supposed to be only a 7-day exercise! Puzzle was completed without too much aggro but needed help to explain why several of my answers were right – so thank you DT. **/***.

  13. A very enjoyable and fairly tricky crossword today, I agree with all of the previous moans and groans re the “flappy” bits of the paper and have sent a complaint to the DT (which will of course be totally ignored as we are only the idiots who pay for the thing). Rant over, my thanks to the setter and to Deep Threat for a most amusing review.

  14. Wizzed in the NW corner, I usually start at the top and work down, then things got more difficult and ended up with a ***, also agree with Kath’s**** for enjoyment.some of the wordplay was ‘toughie’ standard like 5d,what a clever crossword, thanks setter and DT for the pics,; always was a teddy boy at heart and loved the dancing flappers! Whoever drempt up today’s paper format should be shot.

  15. I do feel sorry for those who haven’t read the Just William stories. That’s not only because of 23A, either! On the other hand, when I reread some as an adult (children are great excuses for such activity) I enjoyed them just as much – so, to those who haven’t read them, give them a go :-)

    23A got a two-smile tag, and 24A got another.

    Barely 2* hard, but 4* for pleasure. Thanks to setter, and to DT for the piccies :-)

    1. I have just bought Just William for the son of one of my customers. I have to get him off The Famous Five somehow

      1. I don’t think it matters at all what they’re reading as long as they’re reading something – assuming they’re not teenagers, that is!

  16. Another easy but enjoyable solve in a four poster bed in Ardbrecknish House on the banks of Loch Awe. I enjoyed the use of Violet Elizabeth Bott in 23 across and smiled as the answer went in. 22ac was brilliant and 6d took me back many years to when Saint Sharon wore them but never for long. Wink wink nudge nudge, know what I mean. Ooh er missus. Ta to all

    1. We stayed just down the road from there a few years ago and went into Ardbrecknish House for dinner once. There we were sitting in the corner tucking into a very large trout each when a group of lads decided to play pool and nearly knocked my dinner on the floor!!!! They came second. Try visiting Cruachan – very very interesting.

  17. A nice puzzle, with some amusing word play, especially 23a which made me chuckle. Many thanks to the compiler for a fun morning and to Deep Throat (though I didn’t need your help today).

  18. I know we’re not supposed to mention solving times but pommette and I completed this in just about the same time Sir Bradley has just posted for a 10 mile time trial :grin:
    Glad it wasn’t me on the bike!

    Thanks to the setter and DT.

    1. But Time Trials are individual events – you seem to have had a “Domestique”!

      Apologies to pommette!

      1. “Domestique”? Pommette reads the clues, writes the answers in and then maybe asks for a bit of a hint when she’s stuck. Think it’s me who’s the ‘domestique’ at lunchtime today – tomorrow I’m the blogger :grin:

  19. ** (just!) / **** for me, a little harder than usual, and very enjoyable. Needed to check the defintion of the 20’s girl and the undergarment, both of which were a little obscure, although the wordplay indicated the answers quite strongly.

  20. Finished but with very little enjoyment. Far too complex and all a bit of a trudge. Not a patch on yesterday’s brilliant puzzle for me.
    Thx to DT for the much needed hints.

  21. BTW can anyone throw any light on 3d in the Quick crossword? Got all the checking letters but can’t make head nor tail of it.

  22. , but not without considerable help from DT (Deep Threat that is) for which many thanks, and 20a is stretching the meaning of the word, according to the BRB. ****/*** for me

  23. Agreed with comment on this being somewhat tough. Got stymied on the last 4-5 and needed the clues to unravel it!

    Seemed slow
    To us!

  24. Pleasant puzzle today!

    Faves : 11a, 17a, 19a, 28a, 30a, 5d, 8d, 9d, 18d & 26d.

    Very mixed weather today in NL. Much cooler now – will have to fish out shirts with sleeves from now on!

  25. Another good puzzle with many smiles. I did need DT’s hint to know the why of 9d, how obvious when it’s explained to you! And loved, loved 23a as a devoted follower of William as a child. I wonder how many times I read those books. Last one in was 25d, how silly of me as it’s so plain to see. Thanks to DT for explanation and to setter.

  26. Got stuck on 25d. To me a kindle is something I read on.
    Glad I don’t get the paper with it’s flappy bits although I do miss all the other puzzles.
    Only one sudoku and quick and cryptic on the ipad.
    Enjoyed this one

    1. RE: Kindle…

      I think that’s a nice bit of misdirection in the clue, it’s a common ruse to capitalise a word for its sense in the surface reading, but you have to use a different uncapitalised meaning to solve it. In fact any capitalised word that’s not at the start of the clue should immediately start the alarm bells ringing !

      1. That’s useful advice and something that I’d never thought of – thanks. :smile:
        These setters are devious, aren’t they – I suppose that’s part of the art of setting crosswords.

  27. Lovely puzzle today which fell into place fairly quickly other than bottom left hand corner which was last in for me. Thanks to the setter – it definitely had the 17a and was much nicer than today’s Times!

  28. So pleased Deep Threat gave this 3 stars for difficulty. When I struggle, I often find that the bloggers dismiss the puzzle as ridiculously easy. Worth the effort.

  29. Thanks to the setter and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. A very tricky, but hugely enjoyable puzzle. I was beaten by 12&22a, needed the hints for those. If only I’d taken the time to figure out the definitions, I felt they were gettable. Favourites were 13,19&30a and 1d. Managed another walk today in Central London, same result as yesterday, heavy shower at the end :-) Was 3*/3* for me.

  30. I found this very enjoyable, although the longer clues were a lot easier than some of the shorter ones, 30a and 25d for example.Neeeded the hint for 23a, though. Thanks to DT and the setter for the interesting mix of clues.
    Horrible rain coming down slowly all day.

  31. My paper had “Work out” not “Analyse” on 30a, which held me up somewhat. Even corrected it’s not my favourite clue.

  32. I thought this was a superb crossword.
    Very tough to get started – but once into it, it had some very clever clues.

  33. Thoroughly enjoyed this crossword: **** for enjoyment for me. Too many super clues to list, but my top fave must be 23a! Many thanks to Mr Ron and Deep Threat. Although I did not need the hints, it is always very encouraging when I find I’ve arrived at the solutions correctly. :grin:

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