Toughie 1095 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1095

Toughie No 1095 by Elkamere

Northwest Territory

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

Bearing in mind the tortuous puzzles that Elkamere in his various guises is capable of producing, I thought that this one was definitely on the gentler side. I was helped by having lived for many years in the North-West of England so that the two towns from this area were no problem for me.

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.

Across Clues

7a  Teacher left with nothing, having been chosen for cut (7)
{SIRLOIN} – start with how a pupil might address a male teacher, then add L(eft), the letter resembling zero and an adverb meaning having been chosen or elected.

8a  Taxi about to enter point on motorway (7)
{MINICAB} – an abbreviation meaning about or approximately goes inside the pointed bit (of a pen, say) then all that gets appended to the London-Leeds motorway.

10a  Crew one longs to get into bunk (9)
{BLUSTERED} – insert someone exhibiting a strong sexual desire into a bunk.

11a  Motorcyclist’s qualification (5)
{RIDER} – double definition, the qualification being an amendment to a document.

12a  Engineers will keep showing the way (5)
{ROUTE} – the abbreviation for the army engineers contains a word meaning showing (e.g. a released film).

13a  House humour and hotel humour (3,2,4)
{PUT UP WITH} – string together a phrasal verb meaning to house or provide accommodation (3,2), a synonym for humour and the letter that hotel is used for in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.

15a  Glandular relief nurses study — oxygen needed (7)
{ADENOID} – a synonym for relief or assistance contains (nurses) a study and the chemical symbol for oxygen.

17a  Song about devil’s place of contentment (7)
{ARCADIA} – this is a mountainous district in Greece traditionally associated with a pastoral and contented lifestyle. Put a song around a devil or scoundrel.

18a  Focus of dance for old in place of worship (5,4)
{TOTEM POLE} – this is a carved tribal symbol. An alternative to ‘for’ (in a sentence such as ‘we caught the train for London’) is followed by a place of worship containing O(ld). I’m not convinced that these had much to do with dancing.

20a  Black hole’s swallowed a Lancashire town (5)
{BACUP} – B(lack) and another word for a hole (on the green on a golf course, for example) containing A.

21a  Boob that’s flat, you say? (5)
{GAFFE} – this sounds like (you say) a slang word for a flat or place of accommodation.

23a  Art seldom beaten? (3,6)
{OLD MASTER} – this is a superb all-in-one clue. It’s an anagram (beaten) of ART SELDOM.

24a  They deny fellow has left news agency (7)
{REUTERS} – remove the F(ellow) from those who deny or repudiate.

25a  See fences on left around lake over the hill (7)
{ELDERLY} – the usual Cambridgeshire see contains (fences) the reversal (around) of a description of those on the left in politics and L(ake).

Down Clues

1d  Criminal’s wife regularly pulls through depression (10)
{FRAUDULENT} – a German wife followed by a depression with the even letters of pulls inside it.

2d  Liverpool neighbour not quite criminal (6)
{BOOTLE} – this is a town to the north of Liverpool within the Metropolitan County of Merseyside. Remove the final G from an adjective meaning criminal or sold illegally.

3d  Brave, trendy, and right into cool (8)
{INTREPID} – start with an adverb meaning trendy then insert R(ight) into an adjective meaning cool or unenthusiastic.

4d  Surrounded by diamonds featured in a film (6)
{AMIDST} – the abbreviation for diamonds in games of cards goes inside a film (1,4).

5d  Random story about torn pants (8)
{ENTROPIC} – this is an adjective describing the increasing disorder or uncertainty in a system. A long story goes round an anagram (pants) of TORN.

6d  Benefit when eating cold tart (4)
{ACID} – benefit or relief contains (eating) C(old). The same construct that was used in 15a.

7d  It is rare being, wild (8,5)
{SIBERIAN TIGER} – another excellent all-in-one clue. This magnificent (and rare) creature is an anagram (wild) of IT IS RARE BEING.

9d  Cut by a third, power affected celebration (8,5)
{BIRTHDAY PARTY} – start with an anagram (cut) of BY A THIRD, then add P(ower) and an adjective meaning affected or theatrical.

14d  New dictionary is sort of revealing (10)
{INDICATORY} – an anagram (new) of DICTIONARY.

16d  The memo about resistance is the thing that reveals it (8)
{OHMMETER} – an anagram (about) of THE MEMO is followed by the abbreviation for resistance.

17d  Port to require river heading up to Lincoln (8)
{ABERDEEN} – append R(iver) to a verb to require, then reverse all that (heading up) and append it to the abbreviated forename of the famous Mr Lincoln.

19d  Player is breaking machine — it won’t start (6)
{OBOIST} – we have to insert IS into a machine without its starting R.

20d  Drink supplied by unknown manufacturer? (6)
{BRANDY} – in a blind tasting, perhaps, the second of three samples to be tried could be labelled thus (5,1).

22d  Bogus message about United (4)
{FAUX} – a type of message (not used that much these days) containing U(nited).

The standout clues for me were 23a and 7d. Do let us know which ones appealed to you.

16 comments on “Toughie 1095

  1. I thought this was very good. Elkamere is definitely becoming one of my favourite setters, with excellent all-round entertainment! Thanks to him, and to gazza for the comments.

  2. A very entertaining puzzle with some clever surface readings, favourites were 7d 21a and 23a thanks to Elkamere and to Gazza for the comments.

  3. Entertaining but at the gentle end of the Elkamere spectrum. Thanks to him and Gazza.

    I feel I must quote from an email sent to me earlier today “Anax must have added new super soft Lenor when he washed his punk fluffy slippers today!!” Obviously the sender did mean ‘pink’ but I could see our setter in punk fluffy slippers

  4. I had thought I might, at last, be getting a bit better at Toughies – I managed about four answers in this before I came running for help.
    I can see that the clues were really clever now that I’ve read all the hints and explanations – I just couldn’t do them on my own.
    I still don’t understand ‘gaffe’ – what is the slang word it sounds like?
    With thanks to Elkamere and gazza.

      1. Thank you – so it is. I wasn’t being completely helpless – just stupid. Looked it up – found it instantly at the top of the second column of a page but didn’t go back to bottom of first column of page! and

  5. What a pleasant surprise to receive an email from Big Dave yesterday afternoon (our time) with PDF copies of the puzzles. Another thousand thanks for them Dave.
    Really enjoyed this one. Had to do a bit of Googling to confirm the two geographical references but am prepared to accept their validity in a Toughie. 10a was the last one in as it took a while to twig meaning of the definition. About the right level of difficulty for the likes of us. Great fun.
    Thanks Elkamere and Gazza

    1. Hi Colin, 10a was my last to parse, as Loroso in the FT today Elkamere had me finished, mea culpa!!

  6. I had a lot of spare time this evening, so spent it struggling with this puzzle… Eventually got most of it but was defeated by 18a, 1a and 10a. **** difficulty for me. With hindsight I think I was making heavier weather of some of it than it really warranted!

  7. Thanks to Elkamere and Gazza for some well needed explanations, but I’m still puzzled by 10a. – I can see the parsing OK but can’t find any similarity in meaning between ‘Crew’ and ‘Blustered’ – what am I missing?

  8. Cheers Gazza for the explanation which I needed .Favourite 23a and thanks to Elkamere for the challenge which I really enjoyed .

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