DT 27929 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27929 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Measuring device for tower (10)
A word meaning for followed by something that tows

6a    Bookie’s offer about to finish (4)
The odds offered by a bookie around TO from the clue

12a    Person who’s left something on a support (7)
The “on” side in cricket followed by the A from the clue and a support for a golf ball

14a    Become used to batting yet seeing one beaten (3,4,3,2)
An anagram (beaten) of YET SEEING ONE

21a    Means to attract attention in row — I’ll give better advice (7)
A three-letter, more usually four-letter, interjection used as a means to attract attention inside a row or layer – this better is a gambler

24a    Cutting ditch needs worker perhaps (9)
A ditch followed by a worker insect

26a    Cover mathematical function of variable (4)
This cover usually goes on my teapot every morning! – a mathematical function followed by a mathematical variable

27a    Good entertainer’s right person to provide scary tale (5,5)
G(ood) followed by an entertainer, the S from ‘S, and a person whose is politically inclined to the right


1d    Blade theologian used in fencing (6)
Our usual theologian inside some fencing

2d    Old cooker in Dutch house (6)
… this Dutch house is a royal family

4d    Tea for every single person giving protection (9)
The three-letter colloquial word for tea followed by a word meaning for each and the number that represents a single

5d    Love unchanged spot that’s pleasant (5)
O (love) followed by a phrase meaning unchanged (2,2)

8d    English trade union in factory with bad attitude (8)
E(nglish) and the abbreviation for T(rade) U(nion) inside another word for a factory

9d    Sit around in costume trousers from the Seventies, things for an emergency (8,6)
An anagram (around) of SIT inside a costume and followed by those trousers from the Seventies

16d    Jubilant financial district staying put (8)
The postcode for London’s financial district followed by an adjective meaning staying put

19d    Again sound out Greek character about forerunner of EU (2-4)
A letter of the Greek alphabet around the three-letter abbreviation for a forerunner of the EU

22d    Stretch of river for everyone (5)
R(iver) followed by a word meaning for everyone – clever misdirection with “stretch of river” leaving the wordplay lacking a component

The Crossword Club is now open.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted.

The Quick Crossword pun: holly+decamp=holiday camp


  1. Graham
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    Nothing to difficult in this offering & completed without any assistance,Many thanks to the setter & BD for the hints.

  2. Rabbit Dave
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    1*/3*. Straightforward today but nevertheless enjoyable. Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

  3. dutch
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    enjoyable, I quite liked “something on a support” (12a) and also 13a, as well as some nice anagrams (e.g. 14a mentioned above). Many thanks setter and BD

  4. mary
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    Hi Dave I see 6a differently … an abbreviation of a bookies offer around (about) ‘to’ ??? Took me a while … enjoyed this one though not as easy as I first thought …Come on Wales … http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    • mary
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      Hope that doesn’t qualify as a partial answer … hard to explain without using it http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif

      • mary
        Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        Think 1a has to be my favourite … made me http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_lol.gif

        • mary
          Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

          The second part of 1a are a real nuisance around here when walking the dog, who is absolutely terrified of them, they are not small as they used to be but use up the whole road/lane making us climb into the hedges!!!!!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

      • Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

        Not at all – words actually in the clue are fair game. I’ve updated my hint, which was rubbish.

        • mary
          Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

          At first the way you saw it was the only way I could see it … then a ‘lightbulb’ momenthttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_idea.gif

    • Graham
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      That was my take on it as well!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  5. Heinz
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Not as straightforward as seems to be suggested. Thank you for the hint for 26a, I was struggling. Very enjoyable.

  6. Nev
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    A straightforward solve today with only the NW corner holding me up until the penny dropped for 1a.
    1*/3* for me today

  7. Expat Chris
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Agreed on the straightforward part, but enjoyable. 1A gets my vote. Thanks to the setter and BD. On to the NTSPP now! If you’ve never tried it, I do encourage you to have a go.

  8. JonP
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Agree with the straightforward and enjoyable opinion. Thanks to BD and setter */****

  9. Wahoo
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    Agree with Nev. 1d (because I wasn’t thinking laterally enough) and 1a (because I knew what type of tower I was looking for but forgot that one for a while) were the last ones in last night, in that order.

    Again, the DT’s own rating changed from last night to that given this morning. I must ask them why that happens.

    Either 12a and 21a nearly qualified as a favourite, as it were!

    Overall, **** for enjoyment with the last two pushing me into ** for difficulty.

    Thanks to setter and BD

  10. Florence
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    Completely misdirected with last word of 1a and first word of 1d. Well done setter. Thanks BD for your terrific review as always. Once I’d seen the pic for 1a, was able to complete it along with 1d. Feel as though I should have persevered a bit longer. Played a guessing game in the back of the car on the quick pun. Husband got it. We all had a good laugh.

    • Young Salopian
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

      The 1a/1d combination were my last ones in too.

      Not too strenuous a workout for a Saturday afternoon, but nonetheless enjoyable all the same. Would have gone 1/3, but the two clues above stretched me to 2/3. Thanks all round.

  11. Kitty
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    We solved the last couple of puzzles over a lovely long leisurely breakfast, where I gave a masterclass in how to do justice to a buffet. Nom nom nom! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    19d was given as (2,4) rather than (2-4) which wasn’t a practical problem, but it’s a pity there are so many little errors cropping up these days – in addition to the big mistake of releasing an app that isn’t finished.

    Lots of enjoyment. Our favourite today is 26a. Thanks to Big Dave and the setter.

    • Rai
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      Re 19d comment, both the on-line and paper versions were OK. Yours was the sl-AP-dash version?

      • Kitty
        Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        Sl-ap-dash version indeed, Rai! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

        Mine is the Android app, but it seems from above comments that the i**d (censored in deference to BD’s sensibilities) app isn’t done yet either.

  12. Dave B
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable crossword. 1a was my favourite. Thanks Big Dave & setter. **/***.

  13. Hilary
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to BD and setter for a delightful Saturday treat, too many favourites to choose from, loved illustration for 26a must get knitting needles out, have a great weekend. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  14. jean-luc cheval
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    Running late as I am still stuck on Friday’s toughie.
    But managed to find some time to solve this offering from the paper which I still buy every Saturday.
    Sorry to hear about Hugh Scully.
    Lots of great clues: 11a (attacker fron SA) 8d (English trade union) 27a (good entertainer) and many more.
    1a was new to me. I thought that word had a totally different meaning.
    Off to finish Friday’s now.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the blog.

  15. Michael
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    Yes, normal friendly fare for a Saturday – I wonder what the chances are of winning the Fountain Pen are – I must have submitted hundreds of puzzles and never got a dickybird – today’s the day!


    • Heno
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      Over the years, I’ve spent more on postage than the prize is worth, but don’t let me put you off. Someone’s got to win it :-)

    • Caravaggio
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      Michael, I concur with your comment and you may be interested to know that I have the Pen but I won it for the Herculis Crossword, some years ago, and it’s an Inoxcrom – a Spanish company – matte black with gold fittings. Like Heno, I’ve been sending in this crossword for years and years and I’ve never had a sniff!

    • dutch
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

      I’ve spend years and years trying to get the pen – I really want it! I got a £50 amazon voucher from the iPad version (in my spam folder) but not the same as a pen. Anyway I’ve cancelled my paper version now so I have to say goodbye to pen ambitions. Good luck! With so many electronic subscriptions, chances on winning with a paper copy should increase?

    • Little Dave
      Posted October 11, 2015 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      A read and write but enjoyable nevertheless. I also liked 12a. 21a also crops up quite a lot. Much prefer the online crossword without the ticking timer! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  16. Heno
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable but straightforward puzzle, with some nice clues. I liked 13a,but my favourite was 21a. Last in was 1a. Was 1*/3* Great pun in the Quick.

  17. Vancouverbc
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    **/***. Enjoyable if fairly straightforward solve. Some nice clues 6&21a and 9d. Thanks to BD and the setter for a gentle workout.

  18. Freddie35
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    Hello. Really enjoy the hints. I am stuck on 17d

    • Posted October 10, 2015 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Freddie

      17d Fish as start of meal adorned with chopped parsley (8)
      This fish is derived from the initial letter (start) of M[eal] inside (adorned with) an anagram (chopped) of PARSLEY

  19. Jaycat
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable and doable from the wordplay, some quite funny clues as in 1a, 12a.

    Thanks to setter and BD.

    2.5*\ 3.5 *

  20. Merusa
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

    Very enjoyable and I had no problems except for 9d. For some reason, I spent more time on that clue than all the others put together. Eventually I brought out the electronic gizmo to get the answer.
    I thought 10a to be pretty esoteric, but I googled the expert to confirm.
    Fave is 1a, very clever.
    Thanks to setter and to BD for the hints.

  21. Sarah
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t find this as straight forward as some of you, but managed to finish in a reasonable time. I was rehearsing this morning so started later than usual . (I see there is charanga advert at the top of this. If you’re teaching music it is worth a look). An enjoyable crossword today…but I did have to think! Thanks to all concernedhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  22. Hrothga
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Well, if you’re desperate for a Book Token, just fill in the white squares and send off.
    That’s what I did.
    Thanks to the setter and BD

  23. Salty Dog
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    Lots of fun but over all too soon; 1*/4* for me. I liked both 1a and 4d, marginally preferring the latter. Thanks to Mr Ron, and to BD for the hints.

  24. Una
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t find it as easy as some to have. In any case, an enjoyable challenge.Thanks to the setter and BD.

  25. Framboise
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    Managed to solve this Saturday offering on the move between London and Marseille with my little pocket Bradford dictionary. Enjoyed it very much. My favourite was 1a closely followed by 4d. Many thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints. Back in Hyères now for a week…

  26. Kath
    Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    A bit late today – been to London to help elder Pet Lamb and partner get their house into some kind of order after building work http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif. On the plus side their cats who came for a two week sabbatical (in the middle of June) have now gone back home – a noisy journey with lots of protests from the peanut gallery.
    Now then, the crossword. Well, didn’t start this until hours after my normal time so very out of routine which always, to me anyway, makes a difference.
    I whizzed through a lot of it – then stopped to have some wine (nearly spelt it whine, which could have been more appropriate!) and supper and watch dancing.
    Left it on the table with about five missing answers – husband then finished it – luckily for him he only finished it in his head but, by then, had his smug face on – oh dear!
    Got there in the end.
    I enjoyed this one – lots of good clues – favourite probably 27a.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.
    Just printed out NTShttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gifPP to do tomorrow – the instructions make me go a bit funny . . .

    • Jane
      Posted October 10, 2015 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

      NTSPP is still making me go a bit funny – and I started it hours ago. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif
      Pleased to hear that your ‘houseguests’ have now returned to Mummy and Daddy – hope they took all their little ‘friends’ with them!

  27. Miranda Lewis
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Challenging but eventually defeated by 1d and 10a

  28. Robin Newman
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    would have finished within *******, but got hung up on 10A

    Thanks Big Dave & setter. **/***.

  29. Emma
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Hi there, I am finished and have the solution for 11a but don’ t see why. As no-one else has mentioned this I must be particularly thick. If I am allowed a hint then please give me one. Thanks

    • Posted October 11, 2015 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      11a Attacker from South America, one coming in at an angle (9)
      The abbreviation for South America and I (one) inside (coming in) an adjective meaning at an angle

      • Emma
        Posted October 14, 2015 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

        AAAhhhh!! Thank you!

  30. Firkin nell
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    Thanks BD and setter enjoyable and straightforward

  31. Posted October 11, 2015 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    I just don’t get 21 across ? I seem to be the only dunce?

    • Posted October 11, 2015 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

      It’s going to be difficult for anyone to give you more help than I have in the above hint without finishing up in the naughty corner. Try reading the hint again.

      • Posted October 12, 2015 at 9:01 am | Permalink

        Thank you – got it when looked again ??

  32. Miranda Lewis
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    any legitimate help available for1d and 10a?

    • Posted October 11, 2015 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

      Nothing more than is given above for 1d, but don’t forget that in the prologue it says ‘Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects‘.

      10a Martial arts expert goes round island with a girl (5)
      A three-letter martial arts expert around I(sland) and followed by the A from the clue gives a girl’s name.

  33. Miranda Lewis
    Posted October 11, 2015 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Thankyou Big Dave, you pointed me in the right direction and everything has fallen into place now.