DT 27531 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27531

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27531

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Apart from 1 across, for which I needed all the checking letters, this is a fairly straightforward puzzle from our Wednesday Wizard.

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    Budget holiday planning at any cost must include Italy (10)
{STAYCATION} – this, new to me, budget holiday is an anagram (planning) of AT ANY COST around (must include) the IVR code for Italy

6a    Tea, say, with small Scottish dainty (4)
{TWEE} – the letter that sounds like (say) tea followed by a Scottish word for small

9a    Go with lad for thrills (5,2)
{TURNS ON} – a go or opportunity followed by a lad gives a phrasal verb meaning thrills

10a    Let off the hook, sailors love getting drunk (7)
{ABSOLVE} – the usual sailors followed by an anagram (getting drunk) of LOVE

12a    Addition to bill from mass accusation? (7,6)
{SERVICE CHARGE} – a church mass followed by an accusation

14a    Symbolic tale making you really upset about travel (8)
{ALLEGORY} – an anagram (upset) of REALLY around a verb meaning to travel

15a    Arrangement by which mother is protected by garrison (6)
{FORMAT} – a two-letter word for mother inside (protected by) a garrison

17a    Material to give daughter a disguise (6)
{DAMASK} – D(aughter) followed by the A from the clue and a disguise

19a    Fish left in sink (8)
{FLOUNDER} – L(eft) inside a verb meaning to sink

21a    Attention paid in Mass (13)
{CONCENTRATION} – two definitions – attention or deep thought and a mass or crowd

24a    Craftsman pictures tax-free investment (new) (7)
{ARTISAN} – a charade of pictures collectively, a tax-free investment and N(ew)

25a    Get rid of boils spreading in a hospital (7)
{ABOLISH} – an anagram (spreading) of BOILS between the A from the clue and H(ospital)

26a    Thanks the Navy for a feature of the Lake District (4)
{TARN} – a two-letter word of thanks followed by the two-letter abbreviation for the Navy

27a    Writer met rate for changing a line of verse (10)
{PENTAMETER} – a writing implement followed by an anagram (changing) of MET RATE


1d    Location making sense in audition (4)
{SITE} – sounds like (in audition) one of the five senses

2d    One can under pressure! (7)
{AEROSOL} – a cryptic definition of a pressurised can

3d    Resist charges for designing machines in store (4,9)
{CASH REGISTERS} – an anagram (designing) of RESIST CHARGES gives these machines found in a sstore or shop

4d    Fresher-smelling South African city (8)
{TANGIERS} – an adjective meaning fresher-smelling followed by S(outh)

5d    Love to put a value on talk (5)
{ORATE} – a score of love in tennis is followed by a verb meaning to put a value on

7d    New law from producing metal (7)
{WOLFRAM} – an anagram (new) of LAW FROM gives the alternative name, from which its chemical symbol is derived, for a metal

8d    Simple carbon, for example, used on a railway (10)
{ELEMENTARY} – carbon is an example of this, as is the previous answer, followed by the A from the clue and the abbreviation for R(ailwa)Y

11d    What children may have to wear for lunch, if room so untidy (6,7)
{SCHOOL UNIFORM} – an anagram (untidy) of LUNCH IF ROOM SO

13d    Convenient-sounding ship’s activity requiring skill (10)
{HANDICRAFT} – what sounds like an adjective meaning convenient followed by another word for a ship

16d    Affable student welcomed by country worker once (8)
{PLEASANT} – the single-letter abbreviation for a student or learner inside (welcomed by) someone who used to work in the countryside

18d    Brute‘s in form — on steroids! (7)
{MONSTER} – hidden (in) inside the clue

20d    Surgeon has time in study first (7)
{DENTIST} – T(ime) inside a study and the three letters that look like the abbreviated form of first

22d    Touch that’s integral to getting even (5)
{TINGE} – hidden inside (integral to) the clue

23d    Person who does clean  fish (4)
{CHAR} – two definitions – a cleaning lady and a type of fish

Scchua should be back next week.

The Quick crossword pun: (junk} + {shuns} = {junctions}

63 comments on “DT 27531

  1. Great fun especially 4d which made me smile. No whinges today – apologies for yesterday’s rant, I had a severe hangover from the local Northumbrian brew, nice but strong!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  2. Likewise, 1 across was my sole ‘problem’ but solved after much Googling – with the word now added to my dictionary.
    With much to do and time very short for crosswords, the past couple of day’s offerings have provided just the right amount of ‘entertainment’ for me.

  3. I thought this was one of Jay’s straightforward ones. 1*+ a tiny bit and 3* for enjoyment.
    I didn’t get very many of the across clues on first read through but did much better with the downs – not unusual for a Wednesday.
    My last answer was 13d – spent too long trying to make it end in “art”.
    I liked 10a and 2, 11 and 18d. My favourite was 1a – husband’s having one of those this week.
    Might have to try the Toughie before I start any of the things that I should be doing.

      1. Have just read your comment from yesterday. And I’m with you on that – the crossword has to be done at the kitchen table. (My personal ritual includes a cup of tea or, if it’s Friday evening, a glass of wine.)

        1. And I’ve just read your comment a bit lower down – if you’ve finished the Toughie I think you’re very clever and have every right to be basking in smugness! I’m finding it really difficult.

  4. Thank you Jay, enjoyable but I found the LHS quite tricky. I couldn’t get away from “hear” or “here” for 1d which made 1a impossible ! Once I had the”S” for 1d from your hint BD, 1a became obvious – so many thanks for your hints which were a great help today. Well one anyway http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  5. I agree completely with Kath’s rating 1*+/3*, and I too spent too long trying to make 13d end in ART.

    This was a lovely crossword spoiled just slightly for me by the answer to 1a, which was my last one in and which is IMHO a truly horrid word. It’s not in my admittedly ageing BRB and it was not found by the two anagram solvers I tried in desperation, but it couldn’t be anything else given the anagram fodder and the checking letters, and the ever reliable Google confirmed its existence.

    My favourite was 11d and BD’s photo for this clue was the icing on the cake.

    Many thanks to Jay and to BD.

    1. My BRB has also seen better days and 1a isn’t in it but I’d heard of it – husband (who hadn’t heard of it) says it is in the newest edition.

      1. My 10+ year old copy somewhat misleadlingly has “New Edition” printed on the cover

  6. 1* difficulty for me today. 3* enjoyment.

    Loved 1A, not least because our town recently ran a series of events to celebrate that very thing. Made the answer easier than it might have been otherwise.

    I’ve just completed the Toughie for the 2nd day in a row. That has to be a personal best. So on that smug note, thanks to all!

  7. Very enjoyable puzzle today – not too difficult, but definitely not a write-in, some very well written clues and some very clever ones too. Just for a change, my fave rave of the day is an anagram – a particularly clever one at 11D I thought.

    Looking at a fairly boring day today (only thing on my to do list is buying slug pellets – wow) so might watch a bit of the Brit/Scot (depending on the result) at Wombledon or might even start my ‘learn the guitar’course (cost £300, but to me £12 – a bit of a bargain I thought)

  8. Solved in a coffee shop, and without recourse to a ‘google machine’ had a lucky guess at 1a with the checkers in place.
    Many thanks to Jay, and to BD.

  9. Nothing too taxing today although I had to double check 7d online. I missed the hidden word in 22d for longer than I should – I seem to have a bit of a blind spot for them.
    I liked 1a which is a new word that has really caught on in recent times. I love the way our language evolves all the time and can’t understand why people get stuffy about it.
    About to find out if the Toughie will get its revenge after yesterday…

  10. Nice crossword today but don’t understand where the ‘you’ comes into it in 14a????

    1. I know what you mean but I read it as ‘you’ the solver.

      I stand to be corrected.

    2. Hi Mary, I think that it’s an anagram of ‘really’ and ‘go’ for travel

  11. Unusually for a Jay (start with the Downs usually applies) I started with 1a (my favourite) and more or less wrote everything in as I went along, so I would say on the easier end of the Jay spectrum. Thanks very much to him and BD too.

  12. I struggled to get going in the NW corner, not helped by initially falling into the hear/here trap at 1d, so I started in the NE and worked around. By the time I got back to 1a the penny had dropped so it all fell into place.
    Thanks to Jay and BD.

  13. *** Enjoyment. 1a made me smile and 4d had me scratching around for South African cities with no joy until the penny dropped. Thanks to Jay and BD

  14. Where in the world is this mysterious city that appears in 4D? There’s a place in Morocco without the S on the end, of course. But, um, huh?

    1. Some dictionaries give “Tangier” as the prinicpal spelling but allow for “Tangiers” in “British English” usage.

  15. A 2*/3* for me. 1a caused lots of delay as in fact did the NW corner as a whole. I liked 4d the most. Thanks to BD and the setter. Time to take down the flags and bunting.

  16. Enjoyable puzzle today, thank you Jay. I never did get 1a, which is probably why I don’t like the word. Thanks BD for review.

    Nadal yesterday and now Murray today, what a rout. Please Federer, play your best today, would hate to lose another favourite.

    1. Joe Cool triumphs again! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif
      One of the commentators said that he never does anything inelegantly – he even falls over gracefully.

      1. Thank goodness! I had to go out for physiotherapy and missed the match. I couldn’t have stood another disaster.


  17. An enjoyable puzzle with no problems except 1a which I never heard of until now!

    Down here in The Var, I have to rely on a thoroughly out-of-date Chambers Thesaurus and an equally old Chambers Dictionary!

    Weather is still magnifique – yesterday we drove to Gassin with our neighbours who are also from Holland and had a magnificent lunch al fresco on the terrace of the Auberge La Verdoyante restaurant.

    1. I ate there once, many , many years when I was young and slim. My hosts couldn’t understand why I ate only two of the seven courses on the a la carte menu.Even now , I don’t think I could manage 7 courses.

    1. No – it didn’t occur to me – I think it’s a cunning alternative answer but it must have made several of the down clues a bit of a mess.

  18. I got well and truly stumped by 1a as I had fallen into the here/hear trap,therefore couldn’t get 9a either and apart from that was a write in and lovely puzzle. Fav.10a .Thanks to Jay & BD.

  19. An excellent puzzle, thanks Jay, completed with some help, thanks BD. 1a is now in common parlance but I didn’t get it and it’s not in the BRB

    1. It is at the top of the second column of words on page 1523 in the 12th Edition of the BRB

    2. Thanks CS. I’ve only got Edition 11 and I don’t think it’s in that

  20. Is 1a a proper word?
    S’pose so.
    Otherwise some brilliant constructions eg 12a, 21a, 24a.
    Many thanks Jay, very enjoyable.
    Also, as usual, to BD.

  21. OK but not a whole lot of fun really. ***/**. 1a (what a horrible word!) and 27a are new to me. NW corner last to go in. 2d amused. Thanks Jay and BD. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

  22. Don’t know why but I didn’t find this to be one of Jay’s better puzzles. Seemed to be lacking a bit of his usual flair and was a bit on the easy side. Probably I was put off by 1a which was first in but a ridiculous word. 10a was pretty good though :lol:

    Was I back in the Weds blogging chair it would have got a */** rating.

    Anyway, thanks to Jay and BD

    1. Sorry but why is 1a ridiculous? It is a new(ish) word that has been in widespread use in recent times. You can hardly pick up a travel section without coming across it nowadays. I think it is inventive and neatly sums up a logical response to difficult economic times.

      1. Could not agree more ,my favourite clue by a setter who remains remarkably consistent and enjoyable .Thanks Jay and BD

  23. The NW corner was the last to yield, 1a a new word to us, we did try to make 2d more complicated than it was and kept looking for city at the other end on the continent for 4d. Good mis-direction. Enjoyable solve.
    Thanks Jay and BD.

  24. Forgot to say – lost interest in the footy when England and Spain went out. Now Andy and Rafa both out of the tennis so lost interest in that. Lucky the weekend holds the British Grand Prix and the start of the Tour de France so I won’t be bored. Actually there’s an interesting MCC v Rest of World Cricket on Saturday as well – my cup runneth over http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

    1. Footy http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gifGrand Prixhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gifTour de Francehttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gifCricket http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif
      What about Federer and the other three still in Wimbledon? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

    2. Funny, when England when out I took more interest, felt so sorry for the USA who have played out of their skin. Despite everything I have 2 sweepstake tickets on the Netherlands which will end in tears so like you Pommers I say bring on the Grand Prix. Tour De France going through Cambridge which I shall be watching in person

  25. Thanks to Jay and to Big Dave for the review and hints. An enjoyable puzzle, no major holdups. Was 2*/3* for me. No particular Favourites. Completed 75% before the Ealing Beer Festival and the rest afterwards amazingly http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

  26. Quite easy but pleasing nonetheless. 2*/3*, l think, and 4d my pick of the clues. Thanks to Jay, and to BD for the review.

  27. This is the first puzzle I’ve had a chance to look at since Saturday so I’m happy to say that I enjoyed it very much. Hoping to be able to print tomorrow’s out for the train journey home to normality and what unfortunately promises to be a very wet Fourth of July. Thanks to Jay and to BD for the review.

  28. 2 down did not need the word “one” at the beginning, can under pressure is adequate

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