DT 28045 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28045

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28045

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****

Our news and our thoughts are focused on the people of Fiji. A few days ago they had a direct hit from a strength 5 cyclone. The most intense one ever recorded in this part of the world. It caused widespread devastation and only now, as people are able to make contact with more remote areas, is the true extent of the damage becoming apparent. Some of our family lived there for several years and we have visited a few times so we have a special feeling for the Fijians.
At home our summer continues much as we have been reporting lately with the beautiful weather still with us.
Jay in his inimitable good form once again today.

Please leave a comment telling us your thoughts.


1a     Argue about details of parish list to be circulated (5,5)
SPLIT HAIRS: An anagram (to be circulated) of PARISH LIST.

6a     Nibbled, accepting a lure (4)
BAIT : A word meaning nibbled includes A from the clue.

9a     Lack of sense in position that’s open (7)
VACANCY : Double definition. The first is the appearance manifested by someone showing a lack of sense.

10a     Plan to reduce lighting around site of Taj Mahal (7)
DIAGRAM : A three letter word meaning to make a light less bright surrounds the geographical location of the Taj Mahal.

12a     Aunt Sally‘s cattle with a sense of humour (8,5)
LAUGHING STOCK : A word describing cattle or other domesticated animals follows a word for expressing a sense of humour.

14a     Everything depends on this quality attributed to openers (8)
KEYSTONE : The openers are the sort you would use to unlock a door, and then a word for a quality.

15a     Mother’s back with father in France — a physicist (6)
AMPERE : Reverse a familiar term for a mother and add the French word for a father.

17a     Tabloid in credit (almost) — how sad! (6)
TRAGIC : A three letter derogatory name for a tabloid newspaper is inside a word for credit or deferred payment with its last letter removed.

19a     Perfect order for sweet? (5-3)
APPLE-PIE : Double definition. The second meaning is a dessert made with fruit and pastry.

21a     Confront a challenge of rotten teeth but be ill (4,3,6)
BITE THE BULLET : An anagram (rotten) of TEETH BUT BE ILL.

24a     Person much attracted to another married drunk (7)
ADMIRER : An anagram (drunk) of MARRIED.

25a     Report of rifles recently pinched (7)
GUNSHOT : A word that describes something recently stolen follows a generic word for firearms.

26a     Reverse a touch to get information (4)
DATA : A from the clue and a word meaning a touch or a small amount. Now it all gets reversed.

27a     Corrupt guide with a second bearer (4,6)
LEAD ASTRAY : A verb meaning to guide, then A from the clue, the abbreviation for a second and something on which things are carried.


1d     Unionist thrown out of sophisticated bar (4)
SAVE : Remove the abbreviation for unionist from a word meaning sophisticated or debonair.

2d     Money must keep accountant in the neighbourhood (7)
LOCALLY : The abbreviation for a chartered accountant is included in a colloquial word for money.

3d     Difficult words to say ensure twit got confused (6-7)
TONGUE-TWISTER : An anagram (confused) of ENSURE TWIT GOT.

4d     A night out across the city? Whatever (8)
ANYTHING : An anagram (out) of A NIGHT has included in it an abbreviation for a well known US city.

5d     Gas attack planned by air (5)
RADON : ‘By air’ tells us that we have a ‘sounds like’ clue. The first part sounds like an attack, and then planned or due to happen.

7d     First-class part needed to cover hospital vent (7)
AIRHOLE : The two letter expression meaning first class and then a part in a play includes the abbreviation for hospital.

8d     Perhaps watch the enemy and respect the Queen (10)
TIMEKEEPER : What is proverbially known as ‘the enemy’, then a word meaning respect or maintain and the Queen.

11d     Gathering tall stories about new areas of production (8,5)
ASSEMBLY LINES : A synonym for a gathering is followed by tall stories or untruths that include N(ew).

13d     Personal transport needed to put fish on slab? (10)
SKATEBOARD : The fish is a type of ray, and then a word for a slab or plank. We guess this is not regularly used by most of our solvers.

16d     Scottish league, formerly encouraged, spent extravagantly (8)
SPLURGED : The initials for the football league that became outdated in 2013 is followed by a word meaning encouraged.

18d     Endeavour shown by office worker welcomed by a disheartened typist (7)
ATTEMPT : An office worker who is not on the permanent staff is surrounded by A from the clue and the first and last letters of typist.

20d     Person who might throw a large vessel (7)
PITCHER : A double definition. The first might be standing on the mound in a baseball game.

22d     Bottom of the lake is spooky (5)
EERIE : ‘Bottom of the’ is the last letter of ‘the’, and then one of the American Great Lakes.

23d     Check answer in pen (4)
STAY : The pen is one where you might find a pig, and includes the abbreviation for answer.

We had great problems deciding which of the long clues we liked best and eventually settled for our last one to work out, 13d.

Quickie pun    inner   +   surely   =   initially

82 comments on “DT 28045

  1. 2*/4*. Totally enjoyable from start to finish. 10a was my pick of a very fine bunch. Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  2. sending this from my new laptop no more struggling with ipad. Particularly good crossword today lots of enjoyable clues and a few brain teasers. favourite clue 12a. lovely day in North Cornwall the other half is busy in her greenhouse.
    Man thanks to 2 Kiwis and to Jay for another entertaining crossword.

  3. Ta very Mutch Jay. Ta very much each K. Not a lot to trouble us today. Those who use anagrams as an entry or starting point to cryptic crossword puzzles will have 28.301886% of this puzzle solved but no checkers in ten of the clues.

    1. MP. What’s a “checker” in a clue, please? I’ve never heard that term before. It is a real term – not some very arcane pun? Sorry if it’s already in the FAQs.

      1. Hi Jose. Checkers are the letters that you already have written in. At one across today they are S-L-T-A-R-S They help to solve other clues especially if the give the first letter to a word. Sometimes the only way to solve a clue is to find a word that fits with the checkers and work backwards to the clue to see if it fits the definition or the wordplay. We call those answers bungitins. If it fits bung it in.

        1. Thank you MF and S. I would call S-L-T-A-R-S a partial answer and now I know that the letters in there are checkers. I’m always bunging answers in because they fit and look promising – then checking back to see if the wordplay fits the answer. Kinda topsy-turvy to what you’re supposed to do. But, as long as they’re right, they all count! I’m sure everybody does it – but maybe one or two would never admit it.

      2. Jose – Not in FAQs (as far as I can tell). But, look in the Crossword Guide in the Cryptic Crossword tab above. Essentially, checkers are letters ‘shared’ by an across and a down solution. So, if you have the across solution, you have some of the letters in the down solution. I suppose the theory is that makes it easier to solve the down clue!

  4. Slow to get 14a – had a horrible feeling it was going to be a ‘cricket’ clue – so 13d was my last one in as I was short of the magic checking letter. Guesswork for the first three letters of 16d but turned out that I had actually heard of it!
    Most enjoyable solve and, like 2Ks, I could put any one of the long answers into pole position. I’ll settle for a top three of 21a plus 11&13d.
    Many thanks to Jay and also to 2Ks. Such a dire situation in Fiji – a place I’ve always wanted to visit.

    1. Hello Jane. You should pat yourself on the back for recognising that openers could refer to cricket. It didn’t in this case but it might have.

  5. A nicely set puzzle from the Wednesday Wizard. Good surfaces and constructions as you would expect and fun along the way.

    Thanks to Jay for the puzzle and to the 2K’s for their blog. Through my Armed Forces and Rugby connections, I have quite a few Fijian friends. My thoughts are with them and their families.

    Today’s toughie is a milestone for Kcit – It is well worth a go to find it’s hidden message

    Edit – Hurrah, managed to spel mi name corektly today

  6. A tale of two parts with a slow start and only about a third completed before lights out last night. Then, this morning it was almost a write in to complete it. Only electronic assistance needed was to look up the location of the Taj Mahal. Favourite 12a. Thanks to Jay for another very good puzzle and to the the 2Ks for another good review.

      1. MP – you have me confused, not sure where your reference to India comes from. I googled the ‘site of the Taj Mahal’ and got Agra to fit in the three letter word for reducing lighting.

            1. As he’s capitalised it I wonder if he’s referring to Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans or the American Sheep Industry Association? No idea how that fits with the Taj Mahal but you never know.

                1. You need to apply the Santorini rule. If an answer doesn’t fit, just write really small or add extra boxes, then Whitechapel would work.

          1. Why Asia? If you put Asia then your 7d is wrong. I thought you were being naughty and thinking of another windy vent but one letter short!

            1. Blimey WeekendWanda. That makes this puzzle interesting. There are Taj Mahals all over the place, mostly curry houses

  7. I agree wth the rating and it was very enjoyable with some clever clues such as 25a, 12a and my favourite 13d.
    Must have been on the setters wavelength as I didn’t need any clues explained ?
    Thx to all

  8. For those of us that like anagrams 28.301886% of this puzzle went in straight away. Fortunately the other 71.698114% followed quite quickly. And wasn’t if fun. 6a and 10 were rather nice but the favourite goes to 14a.

    Toughie time.

    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis for a great blog. Horrible situation in Fiji.

  9. SE corner last to go in mainly because In 19a I was looking for a candy rather than a pudding so came up with bullseye. I would niggle a bit about 1d – can it really mean bar? Initially I plumped for uncanny in 9a without being able to parse it. All in all I made life difficult for myself so didn’t find the whole a bundle of joy. Fav was 12a. Thanks Jay and the 2Ks. ***/***. :neutral: The situation in Fiji is heart-rending.

    1. Bar one/save one? I tend to agree with you as I would say “save for”as an alternative to “bar”

  10. 10 across and 16 down my two favourites in this excellent Jay puzzle, with 10 across just beating the down clue by a short head. Nothing to dislike and much to praise in this one, although it was over a little too quickly.

    2*/4* seems about right, with grateful thanks to the aforementioned and the 2Ks for their top review.

  11. An enjoyable challenge from Jay, although I did make things difficult for myself by putting BULLS EYE for 19a.
    1a was my favourite and 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2K’s.

      1. If you look hard enough, you can still find repeats of Bullseye on obscure TV channels.
        “You were utter crap at darts, but here is what you might have won, if you had been any good”…cue a floozy wheeling in a caravan.

  12. Very enjoyable puzzle…..14a was my last in and I struggled to understand 1d despite having got it (not sure why)….I particularly liked 21a…..

  13. It just shows that it pays to persevere. I have now completed six crosswords this year without any help from this site. This equals my total for the whole of 2015! Thank you all so much for your help and encouragement.

    1. Makes finding BD’s gang all worthwhile. I know exactly how you feel unused to sort-of finish crossword and even when I looked at the answers the next day they did not always mean anything. Your confidence will increase and everyone here is ready to help. :good:

  14. Very enjoyable,as usual from our Wednesday setter. No huge stand-outs for me though I did rather like 13D. Thanks Jay and K2.

  15. Thanks to Jay for a lovely puzzle, quite tricky in places ***/**** :scratch: Lots of good clues but 10a & 12a are my favourites. Thanks to the 2 x Ks for the nice blog :bye:

  16. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle from Jay as usual. Must’ve been on the right wavelength straight away, no problems. Nice to see a couple of science clues in 15a&5d. I laughed when I got 2d,but my favourite was 16d, what a great word. Last in was 10a. Was 2*/3* for me. Lovely day again in Central London.

  17. Went down the same path as Gwizz in 19a,which slowed me down in the SE corner.
    The rest was straightforward and very enjoyable.
    Favourite is 25a.
    Thanks to Jay and to 2kiwis for the review.

  18. It seems we are as one. I agree! Very enjoyable indeed. Finished today due to another train journey. I cannot say how long but most completed but NE corner was left. I returned at lunchtime and completed the said NE corner without difficulty. Last one in was 8d. I was on the wrong track but once I got 10 and 15 all was crystal clear. Favourites 10a as the site of Taj Mahal was easy to fathom, 19a for being clever and simple and 11d once I got it which was only after I got the checkers (see earlier posts) from 10 and 15. Bravo. I expect that Jean-Luc was quicker on the physicist than me.

    1. Hi weekendwanda,
      Specially that in France we never use the abbreviation when it comes to the electrical unit.

    2. I don’t know how you can call things crystal clear when you cannot tell us how long your train journey took. Even if you were on the wrong track.

      1. Because it would break the rule of not telling how long it took! I believe, and will be corrected if I am wrong, that the reason is it would encourage some to brag and others to feel crushed and give up!

  19. Thanks to Jay and 2Kiwis for yet another delightful Wednesday treat. I have to own up to a bit of scribbling in the margin because I have not yet conquered vertical anagrams but one day i will. Too many goodies to pick from but 19a high on list – no I did not fall into bullseye trap. :bye:

  20. Great puzzle, completed with no problems. Funny old setter is Jay; sometimes I sweat out trying just to get a foothold, other times I whizz through them.
    I didn’t know the Scottish league but it was so obvious.
    Loved 14a, 12a and 21a, but can’t choose a fave.
    Thanks to Jay, and to 2Kiwis for their hints. I agree, poor Fijiians, that storm must have flattened their little islands.

  21. An extremely polished and professional puzzle as one would expect, with no repeat indicators this time too as far as I could see.

    Nothing to cause too much difficulty, favourite clues were 1d and 5d.

    Many thanks to Mr. Mutch and to the 2Kiwis.

  22. Good afternoon everybody.

    Thought this was an excellent back page puzzle, the best for some time. Favourites were probably 9a and 10a. Not convinced that 19a is a sweet but perhaps that’s 1a.


      1. Perhaps it is a regional thing. In the East Midlands it is dessert if you are posh, otherwise sweet, pudding or afters. When I was young it was a sweet whereas sweets (e.g. Bull’s eyes) were toffees (pronounced tuffys)

  23. **/****. I really enjoyed this once I got going. The best clue for me was 10a. Our weather is spring like and the mountains are still white capped against a clear blue sky. Delightful. We’ll be walking the dogs along crescent beach today – you’d love that! Thanks to the setter and the 2Ks for the review.

  24. Hi: I am just relearning how to complete the cryptic puzzle now that I have retired and have the time. Is there any way I can print out the answers without having to click on each individual clue. I want to use the answers to help me with the solving. Many thanks

    1. Welcome to the site Kate.
      Sorry but our technical skills are not up to helping you with your question but someone else might pop in to help you there.

      1. Disable scripting in your browser? I assume that the answers bit works via a bit of Javascript

  25. Very enjoyable puzzle, in the Goldilocks territory .Thanks to Jay and The two Kiwis.
    News of the Fijian cyclone hasn’t reached these shores , at least in the media I have been following.I know nothing about Fiji , other than they play rugby and it is very beautiful tropical place.I hope they have the kind of government that can organize relief quickly.

  26. Good morning everyone. Cloud is hiding our sunrise this morning but if the forecast is correct that will clear away for another warm summer’s day. Looks like we got everything right in our hints which is always a relief when we turn on our computer on a Thursday morning. Cheers. :bye:

    1. 2Kiwis, many thanks for the blog!

      Nearly everything right but … 19a is a “dessert” not a “desert” or maybe it’s different in NZ?

      1. Thanks Stan. How on earth did we miss that!!! :wacko:
        We just could not let that error sit there glaring at us so have now corrected it and apologies if it does rather make people wonder what you comment is about, so a flower for you. :rose:

  27. Hello everyone! Have been doing the Cryptic every day but have been too busy to comment… Made a bit of a dog’s dinner out of the SE corner. My 19a being bulls eye, I went completely doolally with 16d, 25a and 20d. Thank goodness the 2Kws put me right. Redeemed myself, however, with solving ampere straight away. Apologies to Jay for not making a better job of his excellent puzzle. 3*/4*. 10a was my favourite probably because I immediately thought of Agra – we were bowled over by the beauty of the Taj Mahal we visited very early one winter morning a few years ago…

  28. After a somewhat difficult first hour, happy to say this came together nicely, with none to check. I concur with the 2 Ks ratings.
    My favourite today was 8 down.

  29. Late in today as we have been to Greenwich with our French visitor, touring the maritime sights. Bit slow to get going but thoroughly enjoyed this Jay puzzle. Many thanks to our Wednesday setter and to the 2Ks. **/*** from us.

  30. Another good midweek puzzle. The NW corner felt a little tougher than the rest, and only fell when I eventually twigged that 1ac was, yes, indeed an anagram.

  31. Good game, good game…
    Hints needed to complete,but a great learning exercise.
    Love it!!!

  32. First time I have failed to finish for a while. Convinced myself that 19a was “bulls eye” which made the south east corner impossible to solve.

  33. Slightly nervous to write, as we have been following this site for a long time without commenting. But always enjoy the posts. Look forward to contributing. If we’re spared!

    1. Welcome from us too. It looks from your name that you work on the puzzles as a pair much like we do. We look forward to following you comments now you are out of the cupboard. Cheers.

    2. Welcome from me as well TT2 – love to see new people on the blog. :good:

      As CS has said, we are friendly – just a bit mad (I’m only referring to myself of course) :yes:

  34. Thanks crypticsue! We have enjoyed this blog for 7 years and it has enabled us to fully appreciate the vagaries of the Telegraph crossword. We look forward to contributing!

  35. Another accomplished puzzle from our wonderful Wednesday wordsmith. I don’t have a particular pet clue today. I was half way through looking up the former Scottish league when I realised how obvious it was. Bulls eye would not have occurred to me so that was no problem. All in all it was very enjoyable and just hard enough to be satisfying.

    The misery in the world doesn’t bear thinking about.

  36. Another marvellous offering from the master.
    Solved while on the train that didn’t go to my station again. Nothing is guaranteed to put me in an ill frame of mind than waiting for a night bus on the wrong side of the tracks in the freezing (literally) cold. My 20-minute journey home took and an hour and a quarter. And I’ve got to be up at sparrow’s in the morning for the Australians and I’ve done no homework.
    Too many good’uns to pick a favourite, no quibbles and a joy all round. Ta to Jay and the Ks. 1*/4*

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