NTSPP – 211 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 211

NTSPP – 211

A Puzzle by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.

Welcome back to the mystery man whose identity was unmasked at the Bristol Birthday Bash with an excellent crossword with a good variety of clues.  I found this a little trickier than some of his other crosswords but perservation paid off.



7a Little woman, with vessel impounded in emergency, stops over (8)
{SOJOURNS} –  The diminutive name for Josephine (little woman – and one of the Little Women in Louisa May Alcott’s book) followed by a type of vessel in which funeral ashes may be placed all goes inside the international distress signal for an emergency.

9a Legendary peacekeepers ready for Brazil (6)
{UNREAL} – The abbreviation for United Nations (peacekeepers) followed by the name of the currency (ready) of Brazil.  Those who were thinking of another kind of Brazil obviously know Gazza too well!

10a 1320 yards over and over again will be a stretch (4)
{LIMO} – … a type of car that may be stretched.  1760 yards is one mile so 1320 years gives us ¾ of a mile (MIL).  Reverse this (over) and follow it with the abbreviation for over (over again).

11a Confused by lineouts? Lack of focus … (10)
{NEBULOSITY} – An anagram (confused) of BY LINEOUTS.

12 a… entrenched internally explains it usually (2,4)
{IN SITU} – The answer is hidden in EXPLAINS IT USUALLY

14a Trusted mate once went across Connecticut (8)
{EXPECTED} – The abbreviation for a former partner (mate once) followed by another word meaning went (as in to the toilet) goes over the abbreviation for the state of Connecticut.

15a Catcall welcomes single Liberal Democrat in white coat (6)
{MILDEW} – … that can cover plants.  An I (single) and the abbreviations for Liberal and Democrat go inside a sound that is made by a cat (catcall).

16a European broadcasting chief, a German, to jump the queue? (4,2)
{EDGE IN} – The abbreviations for European and Director General (broadcasting chief) are followed by the German for a (as in the indefinite article).

19a Late night rave, one going on and on (2,6)
{AT LENGTH} – An anagram (rave) of LATE NIGHT omitting the I (one going).

21a At university carry on running (6)
{UPKEEP} – A two letter word meaning at university followed by a word meaning carry on.

23a Philanderer in tears, fraudulently claiming assistance? (6,4)
{CRYING WOLF} – A cryptic definition of a womaniser who is weeping is also what a little boy kept doing to gain attention when there was no real danger.

24aState paper creates disagreement (4)
{RIFT} – The abbreviation for Rhode Island (state) followed by the abbreviation for the national financial newspaper.

25a Article by principality’s former president (6)
{WALESA} – … of Poland.  An A (article) goes after the principality that is the home of Mary (among others).

26a Duet, torn asunder, sought help (6,2)
{TURNED TO} – An anagram (asunder) of DUET TORN.


1d Cruise in retirement, taking up first officer’s suggestion (6)
{MOTION} – Reverse (in retirement) the first name of the actor Mr Cruise and follow this with the abbreviated form of Number One (first office) having first reversed it (taking up).  I can’t help thinking that Gazza missed an opportunity for some toilet humour in this clue with number ones and the answer!

2d Area of conflict in Japan? (4)
{DOJO} – The name of the training area where Japanese martial arts are practiced.

3d Old soldier could be fed when there’s space inside (4,4)
{IRON DUKE} – Put a space in FED to give FE D and expand the two abbreviations for the answer.

4d Halt lecture (4,2)
{PULL UP} – Double definition time.  The lecture is more of a telling off than an expository talk.

5d Angry vet’s to seek a second opinion (10)
{CROSSCHECK} – A word for angry followed by a word meaning to vet something.

6d Celebrity presenter gets absorbed in mobile phone in temple (8)
{PANTHEON} – One half of the Geordie presenters double act goes inside an anagram (mobile) of PHONE.

8d Released property (6)
{SUBLET} – Cryptic definition of creating an underlease (re-leased) of a property.

13d Poorly finished but good enough for a woolly (3-7)
{ILL-DEFINED} – A word meaning sick or poorly followed by a word meaning finished or deceased with the A being replaced by another word meaning good enough or OK.

15d Paisley, for example – not one to take note of old lady (8)
{MATERNAL} – … who has had children.  Remover the I (not one) from the kind of thing of which Paisley is an example and include an N (note) in the remaining letters.

17d Lengthy barrage could be murder if badly directed (8)
{DRUMFIRE} – An anagram (badly directed) of MURDER IF.

18d Way to stomach extremes of tough radio assignment (6)
{THROAT} – Use the outer letters (extremes) of TougH RadiO AssignmenT.

20d Hope possibly senile knight retains small amount of memory (6)
{GAGMAN} – Bob Hope is a definition by example of this type of comedian.  A word meaning senile is followed by the abbreviation for Knight in a game of chess.  Add in the first letter (small amount) of memory.

22d Spent f_____ summer in Limoges (6)
{EFFETE} – The phonetic spelling for F (which can also mean to swear) is followed by the French word (in Limoges) for summer.

24d Rector, there’s a mouse smell! (4)
{REEK} – The abbreviation for rector followed by the sound someone might make if they see a mouse.



17 comments on “NTSPP – 211

          1. Problem resolved! Thanks very much, Prolixic. My only prob is printer has now run out of ink! Have saved the .pdf and will print it just now when printer has been sorted out. Hope you enjoyed your fish and chips!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif.

      1. There’s an extra space in the URL of the link, which reads “21 1” – just change that in your browser’s address bar to “211” and all will be well.

  1. Interestingly, although I first met this puzzle some time ago, only parts of it rang a bell as I solved it.

    Another fine puzzle from Gazza – we don’t see enough of them IMHO – so a big thank you to him and another in advance to the fish-and-chip fuelled Prolixic.

  2. Many thanks to Gazza for a harder than usual puzzle, did have to resort to review to finish though.. Very enjoyable. Untypical in that Gazza very rarely leaves an entendre undoubled .

    Thanks to Prolixic for sorting out the probs at the beginning, and for an excellent review.

  3. I’m not admitting defeat. I haven’t looked at hints or comments yet and I will ‘perservate’ a lot more tomorrow, given a little bit of peace and quiet – I live in hope.
    I just really ‘popped in’ to say that, of the six answers that I have so far, 24d gave me the giggles – love it!
    With thanks to gazza (for giving me aforementioned giggles) and, in advance to Prolixic.

  4. Blimey Gazza that was a work-out! Took us longer than Elgar’s latest Toughie. The last one for us to unravel was 10a and we never did parse 3d. Lots of laughs, especially 24d.
    Many thanks Gazza and Prolixic.

  5. Thanks Gazza and Prolixit.

    Certainly not easy!

    22 down was my favourite. 1 and 2 down were last-in.

    11 across is a lovely word, in contrast to 20 down.

  6. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gifThat was difficult.
    I was eventually defeated by 10a and 2 and 3d and needed the hints to explain a couple of others.
    I liked lots of these clues but my favourite is still 24d.
    Thanks to gazza and Prolixic.

  7. Many thanks to all who commented and to Prolixic for the beautifully illustrated review. I’ll try to up my double-entendres next time.

  8. Finally made it! I don’t believe I’ve done full justice to this excellent puzzle. It has taken ages — not helped by the printer running out of ink and producing a streaky grid and disappearing clues.

    I found this crossword difficult, but much of the tussle was my own fault. I pencilled in not one but two answers which I strongly suspected were incorrect. They were. Once I finally untangled my mess, progress was made! I needed the answers to 2d, 9a, and 10a (which latter I would never have got on my own). I also needed explanations for 24a’s two-letter abbreviation, as well as for 3d and 13d.

    Run-away fave clue was 24d, followed by 14a (big chuckles at the answer and illustration), 15a, 23a, 18d, and 22d.

    Many thanks to Gazza for a very entertaining challenge, complemented by an excellent review, for which many thanks to Prolixic.

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