DT 27524 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27524

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27524

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

As is fairly usual for Tuesdays this one offered no great difficulties although an extra word appears to have crept into 19a. Let us know how you got on.

You can reveal an actual answer by highlighting what’s concealed between the brackets under the relevant clue.

Across Clues

7a Jumble taken from charitable event held in Portuguese resort (7)
{FARRAGO} – a charitable event run by students goes inside (held in) a resort at the southern end of Portugal.

9a Small company representative, put on (7)
{COMPACT} – a charade of the abbreviation for company, an elected representative and a verb to put on or feign.

10a Vitality shown by The Bedroom Philosopher (5)
{OOMPH} – hidden in the clue. The man who calls himself the Bedroom Philosopher is an Australian songwriter and humorist named Justin Heazlewood.

11a When childish tricks are played in college, one we wrecked (9)
{HALLOWEEN} – start with a word for the main building of a college or the college itself and add an anagram (wrecked) of ONE WE.

12a Arts venue in Soho area, purely built to entertain Londoners, essentially? (5,5,5)
{ROYAL OPERA HOUSE} – this arts venue is not that far from Soho so this could be a semi-all-in-one. It’s an anagram (built) of SOHO AREA PURELY containing (to entertain) the central (essentially) letter of Londoners.

13a Almost board ship prior to travel ban (7)
{EMBARGO} – a verb to board a ship without the final letter (almost) is followed by a verb to travel.

16a Become more involved in kitchen refurbishment (7)
{THICKEN} – a verb to become more complicated (a plot, for example) is an anagram (refurbishment) of KITCHEN.

19a Master of talk broadcast, this teacher preps a king out of a sight (6,9)
{SPEECH THERAPIST} – It seems that the ‘a’ which is the penultimate word has crept into the clue by accident because the whole thing makes a lot more sense without it. This is obviously all about the film dealing with King George VI’s impediment. It’s an anagram (broadcast) of THIS TEACHER P(r)EPS with one of the abbreviations for king removed (a king out of [a] sight).

23a Ditch all the players on a team (4,5)
{CAST ASIDE} – all the players or actors in a production followed by A (from the clue) and another word for team. The setter is possibly offering advice to Roy Hodgson.

24a Striking effect of chapter in contrary story (5)
{ECLAT} – the abbreviation for chapter goes inside the reversal (contrary) of a story.

25a Eating place row — better not to take sides (7)
{DINETTE} – a row or noise followed by ‘better’ without its outer letters (not to take sides).

26a Examine pulse, finding a skeleton in the cupboard? (7)
{SCANDAL} – a verb to examine or scrutinise followed by the sort of pulse that you may have with your Chicken Vindaloo.

Down Clues

1d Love fine voyage, naturally (2,6)
{OF COURSE} – abbreviations for love (as at Wimbledon) and fine (as in a lead pencil) are followed by a voyage or passage.

2d One yet to meet his match? (8)
{BACHELOR} – cryptic definition of someone (to quote Phyllis Diller) who never made the same mistake once.

3d Small number, quiet at college feast (4-2)
{NOSH-UP} – this slang term for a large meal is a charade of the abbreviation (small) for number, a request to keep quiet and an adverb meaning at college.

4d Classy  plane (6)
{SMOOTH} – double definition, the second how a carpenter may prepare wood.

5d Ineffectual type made out, coming into fortune (4,4)
{LAME DUCK} – put an anagram (out) of MADE inside fortune or chance.

6d Immediately make amends, bagging century (2,4)
{AT ONCE} – a verb to make amends containing (bagging) the Roman numeral for 100.

8d Drink over money one lost in card game (5)
{RUMMY} – an alcoholic drink is followed (over, in a down clue) by what’s left of MONEY after ONE has been lost.

9d Copper, on lake trip abroad, finds criminal (7)
{CULPRIT} – string together the chemical symbol for copper, L(ake) and an anagram (abroad) of TRIP.

14d Prayer in book by Nobel Prize-winning author (8)
{BLESSING} – those who solved this month’s Prize Puzzle by Alchemi have a head start here. The abbreviation for book is followed by the female author who died last year and who was the oldest recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature.

15d Plan revealed railway track (7)
{OUTLINE} – an adverb meaning revealed or in the public domain is followed by a railway track.

17d A ride arranged on express? That’s quite possible (1,4,3)
{I DARE SAY} – an anagram (arranged) of A RIDE is followed by a verb to express or state.

18d Short memo must be written about volunteers — every single one? Forget it (3,2,3)
{NOT AT ALL} – a memo without its final E (short) contains the old abbreviation for our volunteer soldiers (they are now called the Army Reserve, so we’ll have to get used to a new abbreviation). After that we need a word meaning every single one or everybody.

19d Withdraw notice involving church close to Oxford (6)
{SECEDE} – a verb to notice contains (involving) the abbreviation for the established church in England and the closing letter of Oxford.

20d First in history, sitting in class, modest (6)
{CHASTE} – insert the first letter of history into a social class, especially one in India.

21d Still considered almost odds-on, leader in Oaks? (4,2)
{EVEN SO} – a word used in betting on the horses or dogs which means that the return being offered for a win is very nearly, but not quite, odds-on is followed by the leading letter of Oaks.

22d Current duke was in charge, and did nothing (5)
{IDLED} – string together the symbol for electric current, D(uke) and a verb meaning was in charge or presided over.

My favourite today was 12a although 19a may have joined it on the rostrum but for the surplus word. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: {THAI} + {RAID} = {TIRADE}

70 comments on “DT 27524

  1. Thank you setter – one day I will get used to the deletion/substitution clues ! I think I must be getting better at them as I managed to finish without hints, but it was a bit of a struggle. Thanks Gazza for your review and hints. I like your 7a photo http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  2. I couldn’t work out where that extra ‘o’ came from for 12A. Thanks for the explanation, Gazza.

  3. Hi everyone. Very enjoyable Tuesday. Only stuck with 19d and 25 a. Was looking for a place near Oxford. Total waste of time. Thanks to gazza for the clues. And setter of course.

    1. Yes, those two were amongst my last in too, although I liked them when the penny dropped.

  4. I put this at a 3* for enjoyment and would have been more if I hadn’t struggled to get 19a – Thx Gazza for your explanation. Once I got that, the rest of the SW went in.

    Enjoyed 14, 17 and 18d.

    25a is a blast from the past isn’t it? Does anyone use that term nowadays? Funny how we went from that in the 60s back to 80s formal dining and now back to the all in one kitchen/dining area again.

    1. I liked 14 too, mainly because it reminded me of my (eventually successful) struggle with the last MPP. I agree that dropping the “in” would make it neater – but then it would also make it easier, because as written it had me looking for an insertion.

  5. I thought this a tad scrappy and overly wordy. I couldn’t be bothered to separate out the fodder from the indicators in the long anagrams so I waited for the checking letters and bunged in whatever fitted. We have a tricky quickie today. Ta to all involved whatever it is you do. I am off to wrestle with tree stumps again. My field does look nice and we have a swan on the river. Here’s hoping.

    1. I hesitate to ask, Miffypops, as I had a long leave of absence, so may have missed unhappy news… But I’ve been wondering about your pigs?

      1. They are all healthy happy and daily growing. However they have been booked into the abbatoir for Thursday. My problems begin then. I don’t eat a lot of meat. A whole pig who see my lifetime out.

        1. Oh dear, I’ve been dreading this day, poor piggies. I only eat organic chicken, never pork.

          1. I lied! I enjoy bacon so much, at times I will break the rule, but I hate myself when I do. And English bangers; when in UK I can’t wait to get some.

            1. Merusa, you have the best British bangers in the USA made not that far from you by an Irish and Aussie couple in Fort Lauderdale…and they deliver! If you want, I will get you contact details.

        2. OH! Dear!

          Think I’ll become a vegetarian … apart from the occasional bacon butty!

        3. I became a vegetarian last September, if one thing tempts me it is the smell of a bacon buttie. Even writing this makes my mouth water.

          1. After too much wine … I don’t know which is right – “Butty” or “Buttie” … (Hic)

            Most probably “alternative spellings”?

            1. BRB only has the Y spelling. Where does it come from anyway – apart from MP’s poor little piggies. I think I’ve said before that friends of ours have chickens and they say that you can’t eat anything that you’ve fed or given names to (the last bit was my own addition!)

          2. I think both are valid, perhaps the buttie is more a Scottish deviation (for I am a Scot who has not lived in Scotland very much).

            Apparently it has origins with the North and is connected with butter.

            However, I am no expert, there may be someone who is more knowledgable about the origins

  6. North filled in without any trouble. South is now a big problem but I’m enjoying the struggle. Many thanks Gazza for your note on 19a

    1. South now done and almost as easy for North although held up on 22d. Thank you, Gazza, for the hints to which I had to resort twice. I don’t think that I will watch the football tonight, they seem to be overpaid and undertalented. Mind you the rugby team is not much better

  7. The initial bark turned out to be worse than the bite but not really a barrow-load of fun. Once I had got luck out of my mind for 5d Northern half completed more easily than the south. Thanks setter and Gazza for parsing one or two for me. ***/** http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

    1. Thanks, Angel, as I hadn’t bothered to check my answer for 5d, and was happy with ‘Dame Luck’ idiot that I am http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif

        1. Same here! I knew something was wrong there, but it anchored itself in my head and held me up for ages with 11a. Kicked myself afterwards.

  8. It took me forever to get 25a (last in). And I keep forgetting to separate out individual words in a clue, so kept joining up ‘small’ and ‘company’ which took me on a wild goose chase (does anyone still do those?) after 9a. Got there in the end, with help. Thanks Gazza, and to setter also.

  9. Either I’m having a dim day or it’s a very bad case of wrong wavelength – 3*+ a bit for difficulty and 3* for enjoyment too.
    For some reason I was slow to get the two long anagrams which didn’t help much.
    11a took ages – just wasn’t thinking along the right lines at all – my excuse is that it’s the wrong time of year.
    I don’t have any excuses for having the trouble I did with the rest of the crossword. Just generally “Oh dear” I think.
    I liked 10 and 23a and 4 and 14d – and, yes, Alchemi’s MPP certainly helped. My favourite was 12a.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and gazza.
    Off to have a grump (with myself) up the garden and see if brain will wake up enough to give me a fighting chance with the Toughie – might better off watching the tennis. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    1. Your brain will be fine with today’s Toughie – it is extremely Tuesday-ish in difficulty level.

  10. I got there in the end without hints, but this took me a much longer time than usual for a Tuesday puzzle. Like others, 25A was the last one in. I did like 4D and 26A. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review.

  11. An enjoyable crossword today without stretching the old grey matter, thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review. The Dada toughie is certainly worth a go today, not much more difficult than this.

  12. Finished before lights out last night, but not overly impressed with this one, so I will give it **/* – got the answers, then had to understand the word play. Favourite would be 19a.

  13. Glad I’m not the only one who disagrees with Gazza’s 2* rating. After a first read through I had five answers randomly scattered around the grid and it was hard going from there. Haven’t heard 3d in a long time and liked 5d because it took so long to get it but really should’t have

  14. I rather enjoyed today’s offering from Mr Ron. Especially 12a.

    Has any other paper reader noticed the typo on page S9 in the Sports Section.



    Holder: Rafael Nadal (Spain)

    After 77 odd years, the Telegraph still get it wrong

      1. What about Roger Federer – I like him – he’s got a nice kind face and doesn’t go round throwing tantrums all the time.

        1. Yes Federer is a nice man, but Nadal has just got that extra something and he is very polite when interviewed too.

        2. Federer is such a gent, he’s the best, I wish I could say he looks like he’s going to win.. Nadal has a nice pair of buns.

      2. Isn’t Nadal the one that squawks and grunts like a girlie? If so, I’ve no time for him and I do believe a lot of the ladies should be docked points for exceeding certain decibel levels – I see there’s a lass from Bath playing Maria Sharapova, on the local news they asked what she could do to beat her, my immediate thought was ‘wear ear plugs’

    1. My edition of the Telegraph (bought in East Kent at 7.30 this morning) does have Mr Murray as the current champion.!

  15. I solved it unaided again today, although took about three times as long as yesterday. So I’d agree with **/***. Thanks all (setter, Gazza and friendly commenters.) :)

  16. We’re with Kath today. This took ages even with the help of the hints. I can’t cope with anagrams which have bits and pieces either added or subtracted, they’ve got to be straight forward. We’re just not good enough I’m afraid. Thank you setter and Gazza.

  17. A bit of a plod today. Like Miffypops I found some clues, especially the long anagrams, a bit wordy.
    Favourite was 23a.
    Thanks to both setter and Gazza.

  18. Pleasant enough – agree with Gazza so **/*** from us too.

    Only small delay was parsing 6d. I first thought that the TON was the century and couldn’t see where the ACE came from. Must have been subconcious wishful thinking after watching the test match yesterday afternoon and this morning A couple of tons is about all that could save England now. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif Think I’ll switch to the tennis this afternoon :smile:

    Thanks to setter and Gazza.

  19. Took me ages to sort SE and SW corners – didnt finish until this morning. Not helped by 19a where the extra “a” made up a 15th character until I realized this wasn’t the anagram. 23a was a challenge even with the checking characters. ***/** for me. Thanks to all.

  20. Couldn’t do didn’t like help needed thanks toGazza,or else would have been all day and night,****|* tomorrow is another day,total failure today

  21. Must be me but I thought this totally impossible. Could not solve a single clue!!!
    For me one of the worst back page crosswords ever.
    Complete failure today

  22. I enjoyed this and finished without any real problems. Last in were 19d and 25a, why? Who knows, they were both quite straightforward. Fave was 12a, with honourable mention to 7a, 19a and 26a. Thanks to setter and to Gazza for review.

  23. I agree with Gazza – 2*/3*, Thanks to setter and to Gazza, particularly for pointing out the spurious a in 19a which held me up for a while trying to sort out the wordplay

  24. Definitely found this tougher than the average Tuesday fare. Agree with others regarding rather excessively long anagram clue wording but apart from that, quite enjoyable. Thanks to setter and Gazza ***/***

  25. I put the difficulty I had with this down to jet lag having just returned from an eventful journey to the USA. A word of warning to anyone travelling there ,make sure the passport number on your ESTA (the paper required to enter) is the same as the one on your passport. I knew my Esta still had a year to run but I recently had my passport renewed but of course it has a different number and it never occurred to me that was the case. As we were boarding the plane it was noticed so I couldn’t get on the plane to Newark New Jersey but by this time our baggage was on the plane but we were told they pulled it. After a couple of hours wandering around and getting lost in Charles De Gaule airport in Paris ,I got a new Esta and we got a later flight to JFK New York ( not at all so convenient) only to find that my husband”s suitcase was not on it. Having spent a lot of time while we were there trying to trace this suitcase without success we discover when we arrive home that we passed the suitcase midair on it’s way from CDG to New York having told them a couple of days in advance were it to turn up at that to direct it our home address. Competent Huh??http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif

    1. Sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience re: ESTA. These things are not to be trifled with as I was duly informed a few of years ago by a helpful BA check-in girl when I had to fill one out unawares, at the time, of its requirement in order to travel. She spoke of a person who had rather stupidly indicated an intention to overthrow the country / stage some sort of coup “for a laugh” and was unsurprisingly refused access to said ESTA and unable to travel….(Urban myth possibly – but probably not the wisest time to demonstrate the famous ‘British’ sense of humour methinks).

    2. And after all that you found the crossword “difficult”? I think you were very brave to even look at it. I would have thrown a complete wobbly, chucked the newspaper out of the window, said “Screw the lot of you” and gone to bed until tomorrow, or even the next day!
      I do hope that your time in the USA wasn’t spoilt by all the hassle.

  26. I’m in “this was hard work” gang.I liked the long clues, though I couldn’t nail the anagram in19a. 7a was my last one in,It’s a bit recherche , isn’t it ?Thanks Gazza for explanations, and setter.

  27. This one did take us a little longer than usual and we did wonder about the extra ‘a’. No other major problems. Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

  28. Given that I have always so far consulted hints and tips, I did not struggle too much today.

    I’m going to be good and only have one favourite which is 2d

    Thank you setter and Gazza

  29. I’m a bit out of practice, but this one seemed pretty straightforward. About 2.5*/3*, l think, and 26a my pick of the clues. Some of the others struck me as unnecessarily wordy, but didn’t cause too much of a problem. Thanks to the setter, and to Gazza for the review.

  30. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review and hints. A nice puzzle, no real problems, favourite was 26a. Was 2*/3* for me . Late on parade after watching England fail to win in all sports .

  31. Well I quite liked this one. More of a challenge than usual for a Tuesday, but all the better for it. 3*/3*

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