DT 27658 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27658

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27658

Hints and tips by Kath

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating — Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

Good morning everyone – it’s a real November morning in Oxford. On the plus side I’m sure we have a Ray T crossword. It has all his trademarks – short clues, a bit of innuendo although not as much as sometimes and the Queen puts in an appearance. I found some of it quite tricky.

We have some pictures! Thanks to those who have encouraged and helped me – they know who they are.

The answers are hidden where it says “click here” so try not to do it by mistake.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a            Run off with single girlfriend? It’s lawful (10)
LEGITIMATE — Begin with a slangy way of saying run off or make a quick escape (3,2) then the letter that looks like the Roman numeral for one (single) and follow that with a girlfriend (or a boyfriend).

6a            Slip looking both ways (4)
BOOB — This slip or mistake is a palindrome.

9a            Ray‘s male adult, thank you very much! (5)
MANTA — This Ray is not our setter – it’s a gigantic fish or sea vampire. A male adult is followed by a two letter slang word for thank you.


10a         A rotter’s case in domestic tale (9)
NARRATIVE — The A from the clue and the first and last letters of R(otte)R are contained in a word meaning domestic or belonging naturally.

12a         Girl is someone, at heart, flexible (7)
LISSOME — Off we go – here is the first ‘lurker’ and when I found it hiding in the clue I was quite pleased with myself.

13a         Quick beer, right? (5)
ALERT — A three letter word for a kind of beer, (apparently made without hops being used as flavouring) followed by the two letter abbreviation for right.

15a         Cheeky impressions? (7)
DIMPLES — These small hollows or impressions are seen on a person’s face when they smile.


17a         One reproduces a design made by awkward clients (7)
STENCIL — An anagram (awkward) of CLIENTS

19a         Lethargy of Liberal facing sound of wrath (7)
LANGUOR — The one letter abbreviation for L(iberal) is followed by (facing) a homonym (sound of) of a word meaning wrath or fury.

21a         Glows seen around opening of religious tombs (7)
SHRINES — Another word for glows or gleams contains (seen around opening of) the first letter of R(eligious).


22a         Thus cover is given for stable (5)
SOLID — Two letters meaning thus or because are followed by a word meaning cover or top.

24a         In this we’re together — and on stage! (7)
CONCERT — I think this is a bit tricky to give a hint for, specially as I’m not even sure that I’m right. If two, or more, people are in it they are in agreement. Another meaning is a musical performance. Sorry folk – not the best hint in the world.

27a         Understanding former wife, saucy one’s sweetheart (9)
EXPERTISE — The usual two letters for a former wife, a word for saucy or cheeky, the letter that looks like ONE, with the ‘S and followed the middle letter or heart of sweet (sweetheart).

28a         More than close squeeze? (5)
EXACT — A guess at something could be pretty close – this word means closer than that. It also means squeeze in the sense of extort money from someone.

29a         Tense annoyance creates fatigue (4)
TIRE — T(ense) followed by annoyance or irritation.

30a         Why person ice-skating circles very fast? (10)
HYPERSONIC — The answer is hidden in the clue! Is it me . . . ?


1d            Appliance needing large unit of current? (4)
LAMP — This domestic lighting appliance comes from L(arge) and an abbreviation for a unit of electric current.


2d            Name oddly associated with elegant refined chap (9)
GENTLEMAN — An anagram (refined) of ELEGANT and the odd letters of NaMe (oddly associated with.

3d            Catches second character up (5)
TRAPS — Start with the abbreviation for S(econd) and a character, or a role in a play and then reverse the whole thing (up).

4d            No term’s complicated for teachers (7)
MENTORS — An anagram (complicated) of NO TERM’S.

5d            Mariner acquires objectives (7)
TARGETS — One of the more common crossword words for a mariner or sailor is followed by another word for acquires or obtains.

7d            Declare over deal (5)
OPINE — The cricket abbreviation for O(ver) and a kind of deal, or wood.

8d            She lets bra loose getting excited (10)
BREATHLESS — An anagram (loose) of SHE LETS BRA.

11d         Ace partner, pure at heart, in buff (7)
AMATEUR — Buff here doesn’t mean naked or polish – it means an enthusiast or fan. Begin with A(ce) follow it with a partner or chum and then the middle two letters (at heart) of pURe.

14d         Juvenile teen’s a clod, misbehaving (10)
ADOLESCENT — An anagram (misbehaving) of TEEN’S A CLOD.

Four young  friends play the guitar

16d         The French with less than clean clothes (7)
LAUNDER — The French word for ‘the’ followed by less than, or beneath.

18d         Force swindle on mark without resistance (9)
CONSTRAIN — The usual three letters meaning swindle or cheat and a word for a mark that could be difficult to remove by washing containing (without) R(esistance).

20d         It’s correct if you look inside (7)
RECTIFY — Another hidden answer. I really think someone is out to get me today!

21d         Devout following catching Queen (7)
SINCERE — A five letter word meaning following, or after, containing the two letters for our Queen.

23d         Revolt rising for social outcast (5)
LEPER — To revolt or disgust reversed (rising) gives you this social outcast or pariah.

25d         Quits from business, never to return (5)
EVENS — I really am giving up now. Another hidden answer and, just to cap it all, this time its reversed (to return).

26d         Spot missing outside of the ear (4)
OTIC — A six letter verb meaning to spot or pay attention to without its first and last letters (missing outside).

I liked 1 and 28a and 4 and 16d. My favourite was either 15 or 21a

The Quick Crossword pun: cur+dull+aeon=Coeur de Lion

113 comments on “DT 27658

  1. Well done Kath. As a founder member of the RayBeam fan club, I am biased but this was another great puzzle. Best was the wonderful 8d. I don’t normally rate anagrams but the surface rfeading on this was perfect.
    I also liked 1 16 24 28 and 30, which was last in with a long guffaw. He really hides those hidden words well. Thanks to RayT and Kath for making my morning very pleasurable.

  2. Wow, 20d (correct) and 30a (skater), especially 30a, are two of the most elegant hidden clues I’ve seen – and they both had me stumped for a while, I’m surprised Kath appears so well poised after these. Slight niggle that “correct” seems to be used both as definition and as fodder, but the clue shines regardless. These two are definitely my favourites. I am in awe of 30a, I keep reading it over and over..

    I also liked the “quick beer” in 13a, the “less than clean clothes” in 16d, and 8d (getting excited) was the smiler.

    Great puzzle
    many thanks setter and Kath
    (i think “in concert” simply means “together”, as in playing or singing or moving in concert, also like a concerted effort.)

  3. Thank you Ray T, another lovely puzzle. Perhaps on the easier side. Managed to get the spelling right for 19a after recent experience ! Many thanks Kath for your review and hints – and photos of course !

  4. Really enjoyed this lovely puzzle but needed help with 6a – don’t really know why as looking both ways told me it was a palindrome. I liked 16d and 1a. I agree with your rating Kath and as usual thought of you specially for the hidden clues in 12a and 30a! Grey day in Hyères trying to mop and dry up…

    1. How uncouth of me to forget to thank you Kath for a great review and to thank the setter! Done it now so I hope I will be forgiven.

  5. As is usual for a Ray T ism, I thoroughly enjoyed today’s offering. I was held up for a while after putting COMPANY in for 24A which seemed a perfect fit for the clue, still, we live and learn. Very hard to pick a favourite today but I think I’ll go for 20D as a superb example of a hidden clue.

    So sad to hear of the passing of Philip Hughes.

      1. I have to confess that I also had “company” to begin with. It stayed there until 18d stopped looking “interesting” and started to look totally impossible. Oh well, you win some and you lose some . . .

    1. Somehow, cricket doesn’t seem like a sport where people can get killed. I feel so sorry for his family and friends.

      1. I feel so sorry for all his family and friends too. I also feel terribly sorry for the bloke who either bowled or hit – not sure which – the ball.

      2. I’m afraid that people can get killed in any sport Merusa, boxing being the classic example (strangely, fewer people died during the bare-knuckle era than during the gloved era). People have died playing rugby, football but thankfully very few. This is the first death I have heard of during a cricket match and it seems to really have been a totally freak accident.

  6. Thank you Ray T for a pearler of puzzle. .

    Thank you Kath for an absolute Bramah of a blog which has your individuality written all over it.

    I almost reached for a pencil again today at 8d but resisted ad solved it without.

    Too many great clues to mention.

  7. Ooh naughty blogger Kath having an either or favourite, that’s the same as having two http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif Seriously well done Kath on the blogging, I just knew straight away you’d make it one day http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif My internet seems to be working for a while so finger s crossed, unusually for me, I quite enjoyed this RayT, though I found the bottom right quite tough but no real favourite – I reckon I must have at least a credit of 100 favourites by now … at least http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_whistle3.gif

    1. PS In the time I’ve been absent we now have a lovely new rescue dog, he is about a year old and is we think either cross beagle/viszla or spaniel/viszla he is so gorgeous and really well behaved, had him for two weeks now and its like he’s always lived here http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_evil.gif next doors cat is not happy, he had adopted us!!!

      1. Mary- I hope that breed of dog you’re referring to never gets used as a crossword answer…….you really shouldn’t be giving these setters any ideas!

      2. Hi Mary it’s lovely to meet you at last. Especially since everyone says how fantastic you are. :-)
        The new rescue dog sounds great fun though I had to look up the Viszla breed. That was definitely a new one but what beautiful looking animals. We/wider family have Saints, Labs and Newfies. Generally just giant rugs!

        1. Hi Hanni nice to meet you too, lots of new faces here … great for the blog, I’m sure you have found it is helpful and really good fun

    2. Hi Mary – nice to have you back for however long it is. Your dog sounds lovely – what’s he called.
      As for this favourite(s) stuff – well, I think that either or is just one – it’s just that I haven’t quite made up my mind which one yet! Some might call it sitting on the fence . . .http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif
      And another thing – I’ve just decided that credits for favourites can’t be stored up – they have to be used by the end of each month! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

      1. Well Kath I have at least 25 to use by Sunday then!!

        His name is Cai he was called Rocky in the rescue but he didn’t look like a Rocky at all!!!

        1. By my reckoning that means you can use an average of eight a day – are you having a laugh or what? Actually don’t really care – it’s nice to have you back.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

    3. Oh – I think I’m REALLY going to like you, Mary. I’m all in favour of ‘carry-overs’ for favourites! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif
      So pleased to hear that your new companion is settling in well – there’s always a slight risk with taking on these poor dogs that need to be rescued. You must give out all the right ‘vibes’ – well done.

      1. Hi Jane and thank you due to various problems not least the internet!!!!! I have been absent from the blog for a while now, I used to have great fun here, with pop and cakes in the naughty corner and the ‘clueless club’ etc etc!!

        1. Just wait ’til you see the new ‘corner’! Hanni has fitted it up with a sofa, bed, piano, booze and all manner of things. We have just put in a virtual Christmas tree which is absolutely perfect in shape, size and variety of decorations. See you there! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

    4. We did miss you a lot, and I’ve been longing to hear about the new arrival! Sounds like he’s a huge success, as have been all my rescues, which have been Labradors or nearly so! Good luck with him and good health for you.

  8. Lovely puzzle and great review. Blithely threw in supersonic for 30A at first! I wonder if I’m alone on that? 8D and 15A are my favorites. Thanks to RayT and Kath.

    Merusa and my other fellow over-the-ponders…HAPPY THANKSGIVING.

    1. Thank you, and best wishes for you and yours. Everyone is out of town, so I have a quiet day with half a turkey breast and some “fixin’s”. I am looking forward to getting “stuff” done, Christmas cards, etc. I hope you are not having too much bad weather.

    2. Ours is a bit earlier than yours but best wishes for a great day. I just don’t like the day that follows as we have adopted this also.

      Kath, great review of a really enjoyable puzzle and our setter was also on good form. My favourite was 30a which is one of the best hidden clues I’ve seen in ages.

  9. For me not one of the most pleasurable exercises. North went in reasonably well but South was another matter. Didn’t help myself by getting 24a wrong (as mentioned in response to Skempie in comment 5 above) and once again misspelling 19a plus making 16d a noun rather than the verb. Thanks RayT and Kath in spite of your sneaky way of achieving a double Fav! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

      1. I had everything filled in bar the whole of the SE for a long, long time.

        Not feeling top hole today, so gave up!

  10. I enjoyed this one very much but struggled in SE corner by completely missing the three hidden answers. I also complicated it with ‘lobe’ at 26d – (b)lob (spot missing outside) + e for outside of ear. I know, WRONG!
    Thanks RayT for gems at 1a, 15a, 18d, to mention just a few.
    Thanks to both setter and Kath for the review. Excellent.

  11. I haven’t seen today’s puzzle – I pick up the paper at work (free) and as I don’t get home til about 1am on a good night, when I sit down for a spot of solving before bed – but I just thought I’d post something so that I’m not the last one in, as is otherwise the case. I’ll get back to you later .

  12. Lovely puzzle today. Thought I was very clever working my way through it in reasonable time until I came to 7d, 26d and 28a. These three took the same time as the rest of the grid. Thank you Kath for confirming my long deliberations.

    Really enjoyed this one.

  13. good clues all round but finished quickly. Only 25a stumped me finally had to take hint from Kath , thanks .

  14. Jolly well done, Kath – pictures and everything! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif
    I did worry about you with the ‘lurkers’ – especially 25d, which gave me problems for a while – particularly in light of 28a and 26d being some of the last ones in.
    Strangely, I felt during the solve that there was a bit of Mr. T ‘zing’ missing from this one. On reflection, I don’t quite know why I thought that – maybe it’s just me feeling a bit ‘zing-less’ (there are still at least half of the Christmas cards to write!). http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif
    Particularly liked 1a and 16d – favourite is 9a (true Ray T. style).
    Third part of the Quickie pun had completely passed me by – extra thanks for that one, Kath. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif
    Praise and devotion to Mr. T as always. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

      1. I always have a problem with the quickie. I should just give up and get the answer from this blog.

      2. Ummm….. I don’t get the impression that BD is a ‘red rose’ sort of person – you can keep it anyway for the super blog!

  15. Like Clarky , above, I had Blob for 26d and in several other ways made a complete hash of the SE corner.I liked 1a 13a and16d best.Thanks Kath for the much needed hints.And thanks too to Ray T for the slightly different take in some of the clues.

  16. Very enjoyable puzzle that was no pushover. Some excellently hidden words and 8d certainly raised a chuckle.
    Thank you setter and Kath too of course.
    2*/4* for me.

  17. Thanks to Ray T and to Kath for the review and hints. A super puzzle from Ray T as usual. I was beaten by 28a and 25d, I can usually spot a hidden answer even (ha ha) if it is reversed, but not this time. Needed Kath’s excellent hints. My favourite was 30a, it was so well hidden, that I was convinced that it was an anagram. I thought it ended in sonic, so I was looking for prefixes, only when I tried hyper did the penny eventually drop, fantastic my absolute Favourite. Was 3*/4* for me.

  18. Clever enjoyable Puzzle from Mr T, nobody seems to be awarding ratings today, so i’ll go for a **/****as the solutions seemed to suggest themselves, or rather the setter knows how to construct a crossword, don’t mind anagrams if there as good as 8d.Thanks for the blog and pics Kath, was that a ‘selfie’ of Ray T in 9a,or one of Man Rays pictures?-I digress.

      1. Thank you – I don’t know how much “tarting up” BD needed to do to my pics. My IT skills are a bit lacking . . . ! But I’m learning http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  19. For some reason, on my first reading through of the clues, I put ‘tight’ in as my answer for 28 across and of course that completely stymied me for the bottom right-hand corner. After leaving the puzzle for a while, then taking a fresh look, the penny finally dropped and and the remaining two or three answers quickly fell into place. Another enjoyable solve from Ray T with some very cleverly hidden solutions. I’m one who enjoys anagrams, so no complaints there either. Thanks Ray T and to Kath for her sterling efforts also. Am happy to say though that the puzzle was solved well before the hints and tips were available on the blog.

  20. Well done Kath – knew you could do it http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    I think RayT’s rather overdone it with the hidden words today (perhaps he knew it was your turn Kath!) and there’s more than his usual quota of chestnuts but apart from that it was very enjoyable. I’d go for **/**** if only for the excellent 30a.

    Clear favourite was 30a but with 8d and 15a also on the podium.

    Thanks to RayT and Kath.

    1. Thanks pommers – I don’t think I ever want to see another hidden answer in my life but given that I hardly ever see them anyway this shouldn’t be too much of a problem! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

      1. Don’t worry about it. I only got 30a by a round-about route. I read the clue and thought “anagram (skating) of WHYPERSONICE” I wrote it out like that without the spaces, realized it was 2 letters too many, and then realized the answer was staring me in the face, d’oh!

        1. I was almost with you – I started with WHYPERSON and was frantically trying to work out where to find the missing letter! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  21. Another relatively gentle Ray T, with enough boobs and bras to provide amusement. Thanks to all.

  22. very enjoyable – on my first pass through I thought it was going to be a stinker but once I had the anagrams then everything seemed to fall into place.

    Roll on Friday – onward and upward! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  23. Very enjoyable today, and my favourite by a long way was the hidden word in 30a. This was a masterpiece even for the high standards of RayT. Managed with no hints in 3* time but enjoyment gets 5* easily. Thanks as always to RayT.
    Lovely hints and pictures – well done Kath! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  24. Great crossword, loved it. Last in was 28a. I missed a lot of the hidden words, though did get 12a quite easily, but I failed abysmally with the rest.
    I felt that 28a ended in “sonic” but I had the “y” from 20d (even though I had missed that lurker as well, it just fit) so opted for the hyper, completely missing the hidden word. Bit verbose explanation why I chose 28a as my fave!
    Thanks to RayT for super puzzle, and, Kath, you are a star! Pictures, no less, and great hints, even though I didn’t need them always fun to read.


  25. RayT never disappoints.
    Great puzzle with, for me, the right edge of difficulty.
    Some truly cleverly hidden clues, there is really no excuse for failing to get them, but one here took me far too long.
    Especially liked 19a and 26d.
    Many thanks, and to Kath for the review.

  26. I thoroughly enjoyed solving this puzzle. It took me a bit over 2* time due mainly to the SE corner. I thought the hidden word clues were excellent; he really is a master of disguising them so cunningly! Thanks to Kath and RayT 2.5*/4*

  27. A delightful puzzle. We particularly liked the hidden words and did wonder whether they had been put in specially for the blogger. We think they were. The clue word count is spot on of course with the eight word limit being observed.
    Kath, we are so pleased that you have got the pics mastered and that they even got the 10,10, 75 treatment. (Even though nobody will know what we are talking about.) Congratulations. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif
    Thanks RayT and Kath.

      1. I’d hate anyone to be bugged. It’s just how much in from the right hand the pictures are and the amount of space at the top and bottom – it’s the least of my problems.

          1. Like I said before, Kath – East & West is so much easier. Just envisage the word WE – then you know which side they’re on! Doesn’t help a lot with the map reading though……….!

    1. Thanks Kiwis – I wouldn’t go quite quite as far as to say that I’ve got the piccies mastered – they put up a pretty good fight. I can do the 10, 10, 75 though. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  28. Now look what you’ve started, 2K’s! To be honest, I think you do this sort of thing quite deliberately, as with ‘3d reminds us of a movie…’ ! Someone was always going to ask. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

      1. Why not? A bit of “trouble stirring” often starts the best string of comments, although it’s probably too late now to get a really good one going!

        1. Oh I don’t know so much! I’m sure I remember from geography lessons that Kiwis can have rather difficult temperaments! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  29. As I suspected might happen Ray T has ruined an otherwise excellent week. I managed one answer!
    Completely incomprehensible as usual.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

    1. Come Brian old lad, chin up. Read through again and again. Once you have spotted and solved the anagrams and the hidden words have revealed themselves the checkers will lead you safely through the dangerous bits and out the other side where you will have a warm contented glow and feel that you have earned yourself an alcoholic reward

      1. Hear hear! Very sound advice. You only forgot to add the health and safety warning: To consume with moderation.

    2. Hello Brian! Nice to know that we can all rest easy in our beds tonight, knowing that you are back on form. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wink.gif

  30. Great crossword from RayT. Everything fell into place quite nicely. Read all the blog and review and agree wholeheartedly with you all. No more to say apart from thanks to Kath and RayT and happy thanksgiving to expat Chris.

  31. ***/****
    I do enjoy a RayT day but I really do loathe myself when I start off by completely messing the thing up.
    Right…for 1a I though it was an anagram of RUN SINGLE and G(girlfriend) because of the word ‘off’ in the clue. Now the only anagram I could make from that was ‘Gunslinger’, and that was tenuous at best for something that is lawful, bearing in mind that I read law. Anyhow I pencilled it in.

    Other mistakes include not spotting the hidden answer in 30a across having wrote in ‘supersonic’. that was only corrected when I finally got 20d.

    Amazingly the rest of the clues went in fine once I’d sorted out 1a.

    Favourite clue has to be 8d. Oh just wonderful.

    Many thanks to RayT and to Kath for the brilliant blog and pictures. Well done Kath. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif

    1. Don’t beat yourself up, let alone loathe yourself. Sometimes things just go wrong. As a certain friend once said to me, “You need to remember that it’s only a crossword”. That’s not exactly what he said but we’re ‘discouraged’, quite rightly, from using bad language on this blog!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

      1. I know the feeling. I often say to myself that it’s only a crossword but after checking the OED, the definition refers directly to a puzzle which is, I quote: Cause (someone) to feel confused because they cannot understand something.
        Sounds like a serious matter to me.

    2. Hi Hanni – don’t be disheartened, there are SO many times when I manage to justify answers to myself that look totally ridiculous when the correct ones finally materialise! Also plenty of times when I’m ever so grateful for checking letters to correct my spelling – and I took English!

      Really looking forward to seeing my personalised Christmas bauble – haven’t had one of those before. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

      1. Thank you all. I really just felt so frustrated with myself…there has to be a link between crosswords and masochism somewhere. I think Jean-lucs’ description from the OED is pretty spot on!

        However a life without cryptic crosswords would be do much be much less interesting. Though it does occasionally lead me to use bad language. ;-)

        Jane your Christmas bauble is looking wonderful. Very elegant with a touch of humour. If that’s possible for a bauble. :-)

  32. Sailed through this smugly until…….serves me right – up loomed 27a, 28a, 29a !!! Huh. Put “Laundry” for 16d then ……grr. Missed the cunningly run-ons , too, down S so am suitably chastened. LOVED 8d, though ! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif

  33. Day 3…. Didn’t get as close to completion as the last two days…..but…… I think I solved a few more difficult ones. Had most of the top and the right… SE was problematic.

    1. Well done on Day 3. Lots of people find Ray T tricky. He sets alternate Thursday crosswords – today was one of his as you’ve probably gathered. You just need to try to get on to his wavelength.
      Keep commenting . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

    2. Hi Carlos. I know a lot of people have said it, but stick with the blog! I’ve learnt more in a few months here than in 25+ years, albeit intermittently, of crosswording.

      Please keep commenting as Kath said. Plus you get to find out how to shut down the centre of Hyeres with a crane and what publicans do on a Sunday morning in a suit! It’s true.

      1. So that’s what Miffypops is up to… I thought he was on the Nigel Farage campaign trail…how silly of me.

  34. Well, I drew a blank in the SE corner this morning and had to leave it until I returned late this evening. Happily, my brain seems to have warmed up because I’ve just finished without too much exertion.

    Another long lurker! Equal in length to Monday’s one. I will go for 8d as favourite though, with a nod to 6a, because I’m a sucker for something a bit naughty http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif.

    Thanks to Ray T for a great puzzle as usual, and well done to Kath on another super review – and pictures! Ta muchly for that. I’m so glad I didn’t end up needing to refer it before completion!

    1. Both ten letters. Any advance on ten? When are you going to gather a gang together and blog. Kitty, Hanni, Brian. The trinity. Go for it. You can have any Monday you want and probably any other day. Come on. You can do it!!!

      1. Oh, I would pay to see Brian blog!

        As for me… http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif I suddenly feel very sleepy … Gotta go – goodnight!

      2. Miffypops. I would never want to blog. You have Monday’s sewn up. You encourage and explain with wit. You tease with benevolence. Your pencil jokes are appalling. And you look fantastic in a suit…I think??? Who can tell. What more could anybody ask? Except I will…what is the ten reference?

        1. Ten is the length of today’s and Monday’s long hidden words, Hanni.

          And I agree that Miffypops should keep blogging :).

          Oops – I’m meant to be asleep, aren’t I? Well, it really is time for me to bed down now. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  35. And bringing up the rear … Lovely RayT with too many stand-out clues to mention. Loved it when I finally got in from work. 3*/5* (if only for 30a which took me far too long to see)

  36. Great blog today, nice to see everyone still on form, and what a lot of nice new ‘faces’ good to be back!!!

  37. Have had very little opportunity for puzzles this week. This was one I couldn’t miss! Thoroughly enjoyed it. I agree with your ***/**** rating, Kath. Plenty of lovely clues. I thought that 20d and 30a were beautifully hidden.

    What a super review, Kath! Love of your choice of pictures. Clever you!

    Big thanks to RayT and to Kath for the first-rate puzzle and review respectively.

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