DT 27297 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27297

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27297

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty **/***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs where the day has begun grey and overcast.

This one started quickly, then I ran into some trouble in the SE corner, which pushed the solving time just to the border of *** difficulty for me.

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.


7a           Bound to interrupt outburst in shabby public building (7)
{ FLEAPIT } … particularly a cinema. A verb meaning to bound inside an outburst of temper.

8a           Not a regulated port in part of Canada (7)
{ ONTARIO } Anagram (regulated) of NOT A followed by a South American port, giving a province of Canada.

10a         Admirer in a suit sent misguidedly around hospital (10)
{ ENTHUSIAST } Anagram (misguidedly) of A SUIT SENT wrapped around a Hospital.

11a         Bout of indulgence in soldiers generally discontented (4)
{ ORGY } The usual abbreviation signifying soldiers who are not officers, followed by the first and last letters of GenerallY (the content removed from ‘generally’, so that it is dis-content-ed).

12a         Hear of hunting event and dance offering food (8)
{ MEATBALL } A homophone (hear of) a gathering at the start of a hunt, followed by a formal dance.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

14a         Shackleton, perhaps, foremost of explorers with others around the North (6)
{ ERNEST } A man’s name shared by Shackleton and others is made up of the initial letter (foremost) of Explorer and a word meaning ‘the others’, wrapped around North.

15a         One may be gripped by magazine before school getting fast transport (6,5)
{ BULLET TRAIN } Something that may be found in the magazine of a firearm, followed by a verb meaning to school.

19a         Long to be accepted by street pack (6)
{ SACHET } A verb expressing longing inside the abbreviation for street.

20a         Fellow made to be unruly restrained by a military chief (8)
{ ACADEMIC } Anagram (to be unruly) of MADE inside A (from the clue) and an abbreviation for a senior commander in the military, giving a university fellow.

22a         Family left in lavatory (4)
{ CLAN } Left inside an informal (American) word for lavatory.

23a         Deviation in a boat at sea boarded by English bishop (10)
{ ABERRATION } English and the abbreviation for the mode of address of a bishop inside an anagram (at sea) of IN A BOAT.

25a         Occupation found in largely modest clubs, say (7)
{ PURSUIT } Remove the final E from a four-letter word meaning modest, and add a word which may describe clubs, diamonds, hearts or spades.

26a         After crashing, note rule inexperienced driver ignored on the way (2,5)
{ EN ROUTE } Anagram (after crashing) of NOTE RU(L)E with the sign of an inexperienced driver removed.


1d           Man from Malta, say, not one for defamatory talk (7)
{ SLANDER } Remove the initial I (not one) from a word describing someone from Malta, or Cyprus, or Shetland.

2d           Break  feature in car (4)
{ DASH } Double definition: a verb meaning to break something, usually by hitting it against a hard object; and the part of a car where the dials and switches may be found.

3d           It could be taken during easiest afternoon? (6)
{ SIESTA } An all-in-one clue, where the answer is hidden in the clue.

4d           Fool reported above river — a jumper? (8)
{ KNITWEAR } A homophone (reported) of a word describing a fool. Followed by (above, in a Down clue) a river in the North East of England.

5d           Dressing and fashion an aim, yes? No (10)
{ MAYONNAISE } Anagram (fashion) of AN AIM YES NO.

6d           Loathing wind after endless food (7)
{ DISGUST } Remove the final H from a word describing prepared food, and add a puff of wind.

9d           Cross here for those returning? (6,5)
{ BALLOT PAPER } Cryptic definition of what you use to cast a vote.

13d         Excessive sensitivity and pained expression at home harboured by tragic girl (10)
{ TOUCHINESS } A cry of pain and a two-letter word for ‘at home’ inside one of Thomas Hardy’s heroines.

16d         Seducer in group beginning to host a major share of debauchery (8)
{ LOTHARIO } A man’s name which has come to denote a seducer, originally from a story told in Don Quixote, is made up of a group of articles for sale in an auction, the initial letter of Host, A (from the clue) and the first three letters of a four-letter word for debauchery.

17d         Dangerous road plus ground with day receding (7)
{ PARLOUS } Anagram (ground) of ROA(D) PLUS with the Day removed.

18d         Cheese is firm and dry in appearance on reflection (7)
{ RICOTTA } An Italian soft cheese.  An abbreviation for a firm and the abbreviation for someone who doesn’t drink alcohol (and is thus ‘dry’) inside the reversal (on reflection) of a word for appearance.

21d         Out-and-out nationalist ultimately supporting Scottish isle (6)
{ ARRANT } A somewhat archaic word, often seen in conjunction with ‘knave’, made up from the name of a Scottish island in the Firth of Clyde followed by the last letter of nationalist.

24d         Movement typical, perhaps, of grey  communist (4)
{ TROT } Double definition: the way that a grey, or any other variety of horse, might move; and the shortened form  of a variety of Communist.

The Quick Crossword pun { CANTER }{ LOOP } = { CANTELOUPE }

68 comments on “DT 27297

  1. Glad that im not the only one who had a few issues but mine were SW corner, eventually all sorted out.Thought 23A was quiet clever & 12A made me laugh, overall I enjoyed this puzzle & agree with the ratings.Many thanks to the setter and DT for the review.


    1. The actual time was within 10 seconds of my (self-imposed) boundary. I think that’s close enough to put it firmly on the fence!

      1. 2* I can do but 3* I need a little help. I think that I’m going to need a little help

        1. It’s interesting how differently people approach the task. I never look at the blog till after I’ve completed as much as possible. Then the hinter’s rating is an added extra and sometimes a (pleasant) surprise.

          For me, someone else’s rating would interfere with my approach. I wouldn’t want to be put off before I started!!

          1. I do know what you mean – I always do the back page cryptic and then look at the blog. Sometimes I feel a bit discouraged by the number of stars for difficulty that the blogger has given it. I think that some bloggers are kinder to us lesser mortals than others – I’m not going any further than that!
            When we get into Toughie territory I sometimes allow myself a little peep at the introduction to decide whether or not it’s worth having a go.

  2. Hi DT thanks for the hints, I didn’t need them today but needed plenty of help from my electronic ‘friends’ , I took a long time to get going on this and struggled with quite a few, one or two worthy of a toughie IMHO of course, one favourite today, this will hopefully please Kath ;-) 11a, a three star at least for me, a dull drizzly day here but not cold so that’s something, no need for the heating on today thank goodness!!

      1. Hello collywobs, thank you, yes we had a really good time, the longest holiday I’ve ever taken and I was ready for more :-)

      1. Hope your holiday is going ahead Kath? I’ve never been to Suffolk, mind there are lots of places I’ve never been, that’s why we intend to use the motorhome mostly in this country rather than go abroad

        1. So far so good – hopefully off tomorrow. Suffolk doesn’t feel English to me – don’t know what it does feel and can’t really explain why, it just doesn’t! Everything, especially houses, looks different. My best cousin lives there and collie’s coming too – we’ve decided that, as of now, if she can’t come then we don’t go. Dead simple!

          1. I am sure you will have a lovely time Kath. We go every year in the Spring for a couple of weeks doing our birdwatching. If you are anywhere near the coast Aldeburgh and Southwold are worth a visit.

            1. Thanks – we’re just outside Woodbridge – think Aldeburgh is about 20 miles away so will probably head in that direction at some stage but most of the week will be loafing around and giggling with my lovely cousin and her husband.

              1. Forgot to mention the obvious place – which is nearer to you – Snape Maltings. Vast array of merchandise to look at plus a café and pub !

            2. And beccles, bungay , walbleswick, fotheringay, somerleton house, but do yourself a favour , stay well clear of Ipswich.

              1. Am I missing something slartibartfast, I thought Fotheringhay was near Oundle Northamptonshire, not far from where I am, is there another? But do agree with you about Ipswich :)

            3. If you do go to Ipswich, there is a fantastic ice cream shop on the street opposite the Novotel. You choose different sweets and sprinkles and loads of different and unusual ice creams and then a topping. Fantastic. Best thing in Ipswich… I used to go there for work.

              1. You were lucky – I was at school there and used to regularly get busted for going into town for a beer

      2. Thank you – you are all very sweet and wonderful. I can’t wait to escape to the wilds of Suffolk, my cousin and total lack of responsibility. Just in case anyone is getting excited about being able to have numerous favourites I think I might be watching – might even be commenting. In other words you haven’t escaped me yet!!

  3. Eee bah gum that were a bit ard ! Thank you setter. At least 2.5 trips round the Circle line – but enjoyable nevertheless. Each clue solve was like a personal triumph ! Thank you DT for your hints and review.

  4. I’d say 3* for difficulty and 3*/4* for enjoyment.
    I couldn’t do 2d at all but the hint made me laugh – break, usually by hitting against a hard object – pretty good when combined with car – I know that wasn’t quite the point but . .
    I whizzed through most of this quite quickly and easily, for me anyway, and then completely ground to a halt with the last half dozen or so. I managed to convince myself that 16d had to be ‘letchery’ – OK, I now know that it doesn’t have a ‘T’ in it – didn’t write it in as I couldn’t explain it but did keep it in mind which wrecked the few in the bottom that I hadn’t already got. Oh dear!! All got sorted out in the end.
    23a took ages, I’ve never heard of a bullet train. Anyway I enjoyed this and thought there were some good clues.
    I liked 12 and 22a and 6d. My favourite was 13d.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and Deep Threat.

    1. Bullet trains are in Japan, don’t know if they have them elsewhere. They are incredibly fast, and very comfortable.

      1. Ah – thanks – had been going all the way through my huge Thesaurus to no good effect

  5. About a **/*** for me today, didn’t think the 4 letter synonym in 25 a meant modest- it didn’t in my Collins dictionary ,or am I missing something! fine apart from this, liked 15a and18d. Went to London yesterday and saw several Kites along the M40 corridor-not seen any in the northwest so far ,though I suspect they’ll follow the Buzzards.

    1. The Kites used to cause lots of accidents on that bit of M40 – people were so busy looking skyward to see them that they all used to drive into each other. :roll: They’re now so common that it’s less of a problem.

      1. I despair – go straight to the naughty corner (even though it’s not a weekend) – do not pass go – do not collect £200.

  6. Well, that was tough 3.5* for me. Some very convoluted clues, with (deliberately) misleading punctuation. Also the anagram indicators were a bit elusive.

    Strange how the penny suddenly drops on the 6th viewing.

  7. I agree with the 2.5. I needed help with 3 or 4 and then the 2 or 3 remaining ‘crossers’ went in OK.

    I’m a bit distracted at the mo, so rusty. Good luck those going on hols – mine has had to be postponed…..

    1. Poor you – sounds as if, for whatever reason, things are a bit rough. I hope it all improves and send you a :smile:

  8. Thanks to the setter and to Deep Threat. An interesting puzzle, I seemed to get a lot of answers, then try and work out the wordplay. Didn’t need the hints for once, had most trouble with 23a, then 7&12a both made me laugh. Last in was 8a, favourite was 5d. Was 3*/3* for me. Just had the Central heating fixed, hooray!

  9. Overall this was the toughest puzzle for me for some time, with some straightforward clues, some hard and three that I couldn’t get at all. Nevertheless I enjoyed the struggle and my rating is 3.5* for difficulty and 3* for enjoyment.

    5d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr, Ron, and to DT for the hints for 7a, 25a and 17d which pointed me in the right direction to be able to finish this off.

  10. Very enjoyable and straightforward puzzle, thanks to the setter and to DT for the amusing review.

    1. I found this one tricky with some of the clues far too convoluted. Surely no clue ever needs to be eleven words long as in 13d. However I enjoyed it and it look a bit more solving than the usual Tuesday fare. Lunch was nice as well, Crab sandwiches Mmmmmmm.

  11. Not one for me I’m afraid, got one clue!
    Horrid grid too.
    Just could not get on the setters wavelength at all.
    For me ****/* for difficulty and enjoyment.

  12. I found this pretty easy on first starting, but then I ground to a screeching halt. I was just not on wavelength and needed hints to get the last three. I shot myself in the foot by putting “sheet” in for the second word of 9d, thinking it was an easy clue. This threw me out for 20a, which I never did get. I didn’t get 25a, which I feel I should have. I suppose 2d is now shortened but I always think of it as dashboard, so that held me up a bit. At least *** for difficulty but very enjoyable with lots of good clues. Thanks to all, and DT for hints, sorely needed today.

  13. Favourite 4d
    Found it hard.
    When I got stuck I just looked at the across hints and the rest fell into place.
    Thanks to both

  14. Enjoyable puzzle.

    Faves : 7a, 12a, 15a, 26a, 4d, 9d, 13d & 18d.

    Cloudless sky all day – now in October!

    Fish and chips tonight – always Tuesday and Friday!

    1. Washed down with? Weather here in Cambs is super in the day, but as you say it is October so clear skies day means chilly (ish) nights. I’m still watering the Pots and tubs and tomatoes still ripening albeit in the greenhouse

      1. Yes – I’m still watering stuff too but about to go away for a week so everything will have to take its chances. Picked tomatoes from the greenhouse this morning – really not competitive but there are some really big ones so, out of interest, I weighed a couple of them – one was 13 oz and the other was nearer 14. I think that we are challenging Poppy’s triffids!

        1. Poppy will win, you know what you are doing, i’ve forgot everything me dad taught me, those triffids…..

  15. We really struggled with 25a and 17d. Found both really convoluted, certainly 3* for us. Perhaps ouzo, sun and wonderful sea views have something to do with it! No,we are not in Bolton!

  16. Hard but persavation pays off.
    SW corner held me up but got there eventually after much head scratching.
    Many thanks to the setter and to DT for the review,

  17. Warning!
    If you download the telegraph update for the ap
    It will wipe your crosswords
    I’ve just put them all back in…
    Don’t think I can be bothered to do the sudoku again :(

  18. I struggled today – it didn’t help that I misspelt 23a and had ‘tenderness’ in 13d – doh!

  19. We found this a lot of fun with just the odd tricky one to slow down the process. Last one in for us was 7a. Interestingly, both this one and the Toughie had used exactly the same grid. Which probably means absolutely nothing.
    Thanks Mr Ron and DT.

  20. Best puzzle of the week so far! Zipped away then slowed down last in being 20a. Did not help putting ‘boxes’ for ‘paper’ in 9d. 4d and 17d were my favourites. Got the last four on the way home so this helped with the commute both ways. 16d is surprisingly quite common.

    1. Best puzzle of the week so far? … that is debatable!

      But unquestionably the Best (DT back-page) puzzle of the Month so far!

  21. I found this really difficult but I kept at it and almost made it.17d was my downfall as I didn’t get the wordplay at all, and I thought it had something to do with “day receding”, ie twillight, which fitted decline and so on.Otherwise , the clues that held up others were my first in, which somehow doesn’t surprise me.Thanks to Deep Threat for the much appreciated assistance and setter.

  22. Back after a long weekend in Preston without t’interwebby thing.
    Found this quite tricky and that’s despite the fact I was doing it at exactly the wrong time of day for me (evening). Busy deleting a few hundred e-mails that managed to mount up – amazing how many people have my best interests at heart and want to sell me stuff/help me recover stuff from banks/want to give me several million dollars, etc.

  23. I was slow getting onto the right wavelength. I got all the answers, but I really needed Deep Threat’s hints to see how 18d worked, and also the first half of 15a. I gave this *** for enjoyment. Among the clues I liked most are 12a, 14a, 4d, and 13d. :grin:
    Thank you very much, Mr Ron and Deep Threat.

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