NTSPP – 264
Sing a Song of Sixpence by Radler
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
A review of this puzzle by crypticsue follows.
I often wonder whether food- or even drink-themed crosswords are created because either the setter had just had a nice lunch or was feeling particularly peckish. On this occasion, Radler was obviously thinking of pastry as he created this entertaining Saturday afternoon diversion, which was definitely not as tricky as some of his crosswords can be.
1a Background talk staged by 14 16d (7)
RHUBARB The word muttered repeatedly to give the impression of background conversation in the theatre (talk staged) is also a vegetable (yes really) used as a filling for a sweet 14d.
5a Cheshire East incorporating East Cheshire? (6)
CHEESE Insert E (incorporating east) into the abbreviation for Cheshire, and follow with E (East) to get a dairy product, one type of which is produced in the county of Cheshire. The vegetarian Mr CS would certainly have this as a 14/16d, especially with some 15a.
8a 14 16d get together on the phone (4)
MEAT A homophone (on the phone) of a verb meaning to get together.
9a Who are in positions with heads of management committees? (10)
CHAIRWOMEN An anagram (positions) of the initial letters (heads) of Management Committees and WHO ARE IN.
10a 14 16d (with 8) an awkward matter when hot (6)
POTATO` Add hot to this vegetable and you get a slang term for a controversial issue or tricky problem.
11a Outside of old bakery, “kneaded” means to enter (8)
KEYBOARD The outside letters of OLD and an anagram (kneaded) of BAKERY.
12a Suckers giving up drug for current leading light (8)
HEADLAMP Remove a slang term for a particular illegal drug from those nasty sucking insects that make your scalp itch and replace with the abbreviation for a unit of electrical current.
15a 14 16d (with 5a) – it’s round, ring inside ring, a large number (5)
ONION A reversal (round) of a way of writing ring inside ring [O IN O] and a letter representing a large Number.
16a Female arousing male lover (5)
FLAME The abbreviation for Female followed by an anagram (arousing) of MALE.
17a Just about to change late in the day (8)
EVENTIDE A word meaning just or fair followed by the reversal (about) of a verb meaning to change.
19a Told Alf to help getting signs ordered (8)
ALPHABET A homophone (told) of ALF followed by a verb meaning to help (usually to commit an offence).
22a Getting aroused with a man on board (6)
WAKING The abbreviation for with, A from the clue, and one of the pieces on a chess board (man).
24a Return home on strike, irate militant (10)
REPATRIATE The two letters used to mean on the subject of, a verb meaning to strike or hit gently, and an anagram (militant) of IRATE.
25a First-class 14 16d (4)
PLUM Something choice or special has the same name for a fruit often made into a 14d.
26a Judge Jenny? (6)
ASSESS Mr CS is fond of a 14d with chestnuts so I suppose it is fitting that we have the return an old friend with this clue. What might be a female ass (Jenny) is a verb meaning to judge.
27a Squash 14 16d (7)
PUMPKIN A type of squash the Americans put in a pie at Thanksgiving.
1d Bring back memories again of everything originally in reverse (7)
REEVOKE Put the ‘original’ letter of Everything into a verb meaning to reverse or recall.
2d Immoderate shoulder strap she drops clumsily stripping off (5)
ULTRA The letters of SHE DROPS can be found mixed up (clumsily) in SHOULDER STRAP. Remove them (stripping off) and you are left with a prefix meaning immoderate.
3d Alas town imposed parking fee (9)
ANCHORAGE With a capital A, this is an Alaskan town (add me to the list of people who didn’t know the abbreviation, which can be found in the BRB), with a small a, it is a duty imposed for ‘parking’ a vessel.
4d Advocate drinking latte at first without milk (5)
BLACK A verb meaning to advocate or support into which is inserted (drinking) the first letter of Latte.
5d Groom Charlie, hairy but bald? (5)
CURRY The letter represented by Charlie in the NATO Phonetic Alphabet followed by a word meaning hairy from which the first or top letter has been removed (but bald? indicating nothing on top).
6d Environmental Society ousts Liberal in radicalised Milton Keynes? (9)
ECONOMIST The three letter combining form indicating that something is good for the environment followed by an anagram (radicalised) of MILTON once you have changed the L for an S (Society ‘ousts’ Liberal).
7d Prepare to testify I got framed by wrong answer (5,2)
SWEAR IN I inserted into (framed by) an anagram (wrong) of ANSWER.
13d Shuffling off data there? (5,4)
DEATH RATE An anagram (shuffling off) of DATA THERE.
14/16d 4 and 20? (3,7)
PIE FILLERS Very clever – the 4 and 20 of the solutions to 4d and 20d were indeed part of a dainty dish in the nursery rhyme used as the title of the crossword.
15d Bury whoever rebelled miles uphill (9)
OVERWHELM An anagram (rebelled) of WHOEVER followed by a reversal (uphill) of an abbreviation for miles.
16d See 14
18d Romeo and Juliet united on coming to grief (3,4)
DON JUAN An anagram (coming to grief) of AND J (Juliet in the NATO Phonetic Alphabet) , U(united) and ON.
20d Hitchcock’s subject more than one time? (5)
BIRDS The subject of a Hitchcock horror film could also be the plural of a slang word for a prison sentence.
21d Public transport, then quiet walk (5)
TRAMP A form of public transport followed by the musical abbreviation telling you to play something quietly.
23d Greek character old man abandoned to right stuffing (5)
KAPOK Not sure people still use this as stuffing any more but remove an informal word for father (old man) from the tenth letter of the Greek alphabet and replace with an informal adjective meaning that something is right or correct.