DT 28050

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28050

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

It’s quite a relief to find the blog up and running this morning – massive thanks to BD for his herculean efforts over the past few days.

I don’t really like giving a puzzle one star for difficulty, because it’s probably a bit dispiriting for anyone who’s struggled with it. However, I don’t feel that I have any alternative today as this is just about the easiest back-pager I can remember. As well as being straightforward I thought that the majority of the puzzle was pretty bland. On the plus side the clues were succinct and most of the surfaces made sense. Do let us know how you fared and what you thought of it.

If you click on any of the areas showing ‘Click here!’ you’ll see the actual answer so only do that as a last resort.

Across Clues

1a Sees term out, academic term (8)
SEMESTER – an anagram (out) of SEES TERM.

5a Criminal gang, Italian (6)
BANDIT – a gang or group is followed by the abbreviation for Italian vermouth.

9a Watchful attendant behind old boy (9)
OBSERVANT – an attendant follows the abbreviation for old boy.

11a Slightly reduced, modest object (5)
DEMUR – the definition (object) here is a verb. Remove the final letter (slightly reduced) from an adjective meaning modest or reserved.

12a Page one — vulgar infringement of copyright (6)
PIRACY – string together the abbreviation for page, the Roman numeral for one and an adjective meaning vulgar or titillating. Here’s a clip to revive memories (note that the captain addresses his number two not as Master Bate, but as Master Mate).

13a One feeding ruminants, back together again following separation (8)
REUNITED – a word meaning one or a single thing goes inside (feeding) the reversal of some ruminants.

15a Wild rose experts in train (6,7)
ORIENT EXPRESS – an anagram (wild) of ROSE EXPERTS IN.

18a Accept a less important role and shock bench, perhaps (4,1,4,4)
TAKE A BACK SEAT – reconfigure the answer to get a phrasal verb meaning to shock or surprise (4,5) followed by what a bench is an example of.

22a Choice, but no starter choice (8)
ELECTION – remove the starting letter from a word meaning choice and you have another word meaning choice.

23a Odd story about eastern shellfish (6)
OYSTER – an anagram (odd) of STORY contains the abbreviation for eastern.

26a Male in band gets break (5)
SMASH – insert the abbreviation for male into a band of cloth.

27a Absolve former partner facing single charge (9)
EXONERATE – start with a short word for a former partner and add an adjective meaning single and another word for a charge or price.

28a Latin ruler capturing island brings pleasure (6)
LIKING – the abbreviation for Latin and a male ruler contain the single-letter abbreviation for island.

29a Nurse bringing in coffee for slovenly woman (8)
SLATTERN – insert a type of coffee drink into the abbreviation for a trained nurse. I’m pretty sure that this nursing qualification is no longer used in the UK – where’s Kath when you need an expert?

Down Clues

1d Venomous creature in house? Any number (8)
SCORPION – start with one of the twelve houses in the mumbo-jumbo language of astrology and add the letter used in mathematics to mean any number.

2d Stingy hoarder may cause endless grief (5)
MISER – start with a word for grief or despair and drop its last letter. The clue somehow seems the wrong way roundsurely it should be endless grief producing a stingy hoarder?

3d Arab in rush to be admitted to hospital (7)
SARACEN – insert a verb to rush or hurry into the abbreviation for a hospital or convalescent home.

4d Some ordered a mozzarella cheese (4)
EDAM – it’s lurking in the clue.

6d Musical instruction from an eminent Florentine (7)
ANDANTE – AN (from the clue) is followed by the name of Italy’s most eminent poet who was born in Florence.

7d Tea missed abroad? Small cup of coffee provided (9)
DEMITASSE – an anagram (abroad) of TEA MISSED.

8d Verbal onslaught from one stuck in traffic (6)
TIRADE – insert the Roman numeral for one into a verb to traffic or deal.

10d He paints eccentric theatrical type (8)
THESPIAN – an anagram (eccentric) of HE PAINTS.

14d Much less left by Greek character, single (3,5)
LET ALONE – string together the abbreviation for left, the seventh letter of the Greek alphabet and an adjective meaning single or solo.

16d Kind heart unfortunately uninformed (2,3,4)
IN THE DARK – an anagram (unfortunately) of KIND HEART.

17d Ship’s doctor eating last of succulent fish (8)
STURGEON – a ship’s doctor contains the last letter of succulent.

19d Stewed neck, hit in cookhouse (7)
KITCHEN – an anagram (stewed) of NECK HIT.

20d Important bridge player leaving place in Florida (3,4)
KEY WEST – an adjective meaning important or vital is followed by one of the four players sitting round a bridge table.

21d Furtive type in frame after end of review (6)
WEASEL – an artist’s frame follows the end letter of review.

24d Article secured by the old clan chief (5)
THANE – an indefinite article is contained inside THE (from the clue). This is a word known mainly (at least south of the border) from its use in the Scottish play.

25d Bird, female bird of prey (4)
FOWL – the abbreviation for female is followed by a bird of prey.

The clue I liked best was 18a. Which one(s) took the laurels for you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: QUAY + WRING = KEY RING


  1. Graham
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    By far the easiest solve for me & in my quickest time ever, plus a trip down memory lane with the lovely advert in 26 A. Many thanks to the setter & to Gazza for his review & a very special thank you to Big Dave for all his hard work in getting this site up & running again. :good:

  2. Clarky
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Strange. I completed yesterday’s in record time yet I struggled with several today in spite of a goodly number of anagrams. Favourite today 18a.
    Good to see the blog back on track and many thanks to BD for his unstinting efforts in keeping this going. Thanks also to setters and Gazza.

  3. Bluebird
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    Thanks Gazza,, for posting the finest TV ad. My favourite is always the one lying helplessly on his back.
    I still wonder how Cap’n Pugwash got away with the script for so long. The world was an innocent place then, or else I assumed my father was laughing at the plot…………

    The site is running v fluid now BD. Thanks to you.

    • Gazza
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

      The idea that the programme was riddled with double entendres is an urban myth – there was no Seaman Staines or Roger the cabin boy (unlike Mrs Merton who was always urging us to have a mass debate).

      • Shropshirelad
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

        You’re absolutely correct Gazza re: the double entendres, but I’m sure that a lot of the other children’s programmes back then were being presented by people who might have been under the influence of ‘something’. Only being used as a ‘vehicle’ to show their artistic merit don’t you know :whistle:

        I well remember the Judi Spiders and Gus Honeybun allegations on one certain Christmas time TSW production which prompted the amusing ‘spoof’ Wally Wallaby on Victoria Wood’s show.

        • Gazza
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

          Thanks for the memories of the legendary Gus Honeybun. Judi Spiers (the only thing on BBC Radio Devon worth listening to apart from the rugby commentaries, IMHO) was sacked from her morning show last year on grounds of age – this from the same controller who brought in pensioner Simon Bates!!!).

  4. Werm
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    I’ve been trying to persuade my two children to get into Cryptic Crosswords with little success. I will put this one by for the day they waver, as it is a perfect starting point imho. Thanks to setter and Gazza for the review.

  5. pete
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    This has to be one of the easiest ever, but still quite enjoyable. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the hints.

  6. Jaylegs
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Gazza */** thanks for the blog and to Big Dave for resurrecting the website once more. :good: Favourites 6 & 8d thanks to setter :unsure:

  7. spindrift
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    If you live on the wrong side of Offa’s Dyke then you should thank BD for the St David’s Day acknowledgement with the daffodil in top left corner.

  8. Expat Chris
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Done and dusted in no time. I could even “see” the answers to all the anagrams straight away without recourse to paper and pencil. No standouts, but if I had to pick one clue, it would be 22A just because it’s topical, today being Super Tuesday.

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

      That’s the ticket.

  9. fran
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    On the easy side but although I finally arrived at the right answer for three down , aspects of the clue still elude me. Last one in . Thanks to the setter and Miffypops . **/**

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

      Not me in the chair toaday Fran. It is Gazza who needs thanking. Ref 3d. I am sure you can see the race. The SAN that goes around it is short for sanatorium

      • spindrift
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

        MP – ,Don’t think you should refer to Fran As ‘Toady Fran’.

        • Miffypops
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

          Predictive text means I write what I don’t Nintendo

          • spindrift
            Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

            …And that’s how you get striping terrors.

        • fran
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

          Thanks for the ” defence counsel ” : having just been on jury service I think you have the makings of a good barrister .

      • fran
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for the extra help miffypops I didn’t realise that san was an accepted abbreviation for sanatorium . This is the second time in three crosswords that I have congratulated the wrong person.grrrrr I may as well congratulate spindrift on spotting your deliberate (I hope not) mistake ! Thanks then are in order to Gazza .PS I have been called many things in my lifetime so will add this one to the list .
        Sorry about the late reply I have just come back from the pictures having taken my family to see Alvin and the chipmunks three ..nuff said

  10. Miffypops
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    This is a great puzzle for newcomers to get a hold of. Thanks to the setter and thanks to Gazza for the review. Thanks also to BD. A wizard and a true star.

  11. Penny
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Never posted to this site before, though I should have done to say ‘thank you’, as I rely on it totally – especially for those clues where I know what the answer is, but can’t for the life of me work out why. It’s a brilliant site – thanks to all the reviewers for helping to keep my stress levels down! But yes, it was easy – possibly the first time I’ve completed the whole thing without cheating once!

    • Gazza
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog, Penny, and well done. Now that you’ve de-lurked I hope that you’ll be a regular commenter.

    • Paul Croft
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Like others and, in particular, Penny, my first time writing here too. Yes it was relatively easy but I came here today mainly to find out why 3d was what it was – never knew that san was short for sanatorium/hospital and that’s the main joy of this site for me – somewhere I can come to when I’ve worked out what the answer must be but I don’t really understand why.
      Many thanks to BD and all others involved in providing this site, a wonderful resource for we cruciverbalists.

      • Gazza
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

        Welcome to the blog, Paul.

    • Kath
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to Penny and to Paul,
      As a long time commenter on this wonderful crossword site I have to tell you that it’s really brilliant. Everyone is friendly and helpful – please keep commenting. :smile:

    • Maggie
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

      Welcome Penny. I’m always pleased to see posts from people who don’t always find it easy – I need more companions. 😄

      • HoofItYouDonkey
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

        Don’t worry, I am here too. Perhaps we should ask Big Dave to set up a special page for us!!

  12. Rabbit Dave
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza, whose comments and rating I completely agree with.

    Unfortunately I can’t see the pictures/video clips for 12a & 26a. All that’s on my screen in each case is a black rectangle.

    I somehow managed to sneak in at just the right time very early yesterday morning (Monday) when I turned on my computer to comment on Virgilius’ wonderful Sunday puzzle, and found my favourite website (only one favourite!) up and running just prior to it going AWOL again. I will repeat now what I said then – many thanks and heartfelt congratulations on getting everything working again, BD.

    • Gazza
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

      The video clips run ok on my screen, RD. I’m using Firefox.

    • Rabbit Dave
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

      It’s a bit of a mystery …

      I refreshed the page and the black rectangles remained. I also closed and re-opened my browser to no effect. Then I rebooted my computer before accessing the site, and, abracadabra, the links appeared. :yes:

  13. Young Salopian
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    I too am in agreement with Gazza. As someone who is a lousy 400 yards inside the Principality, happy St David’s Day to all. We are too high up to have any daffodils out yet, but it shouldn’t be long.

    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

    I have only recently read BD’s comments from earlier posts as regards the late shifts he put in to get the site up and running again. A true labour of love for which many thanks.

    • Shropshirelad
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

      I’ll send you some out of my garden YS – we’ve got lots and lots.

  14. Sheffieldsy
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    A problem free solve and I agree with Gazza’s ratings and thank him for the write-up. Favourite was 13a. I didn’t know the poet in 6d was from Florence, but a quick check on t’interweb soon confirmed. I saw the same picture Gazza included, at which stage my first thought was that he was listening to something on his iPhone!

    Whoever the setter was, thank you. Nice to see that the site now remembers my details again when making a post. I repeat yesterday’s thanks to BD.

  15. TheTeesdale2
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Greetings from a mild bright and breezy Teesdale. Very pleasant Tuesday solve, causing few problems for Mrs TT2 and I. This is a good one for cryptic newcomers. Enjoyed the Pugwash episode, and indeed there are many urban moths regarding the script writing, but more fun to remember the schoolboy sniggers! Thanks to the setter, and Gazza for the hints, though unusually not needed today.
    Also, well done to BD for his herculean efforts with the changes – at least it wasn’t BT he had to deal with!

    • silvanus
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

      In some of the concrete jungles of our inner cities, butterflies are probably regarded as “urban moths”.

      • TheTeesdale2
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

        Yes, or urbane lepidoptera?!

  16. Gazza
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    Crypticsue is unable to access the site from her workplace using Internet Explorer. Is there anyone who’s managed to get online using Internet Explorer?

    • Rabbit Dave
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I’m using IE 11. Perhaps that is connected in some way with my problem of not being able to see the video clips at first.

      • Gazza
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, RD.

        • HoofItYouDonkey
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

          Probably wordsense. Companies block blogs.
          Bypass the proxy server if you can.

    • Expat Chris
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      I use Chrome primarily but I’m using IE for this comment. I can get in without a problem and I can also view the video clips with no problem. Have to type in my name and e-mail though.

    • Expat Chris
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      We’re missing some regulars, such as Jane, Hanni and the 2Kiwis. I wonder if they’re also having access problems.

      • Gazza
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

        They could be although, since it’s 3am in Wellington, the 2Kiwis are probably asleep.

      • Miffypops
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        We can expect some natural wastage Expat Chris. We are picking up newcomers so not to worry.

        • Expat Chris
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

          Ooh…you’re in for it now when they get here!

        • Hanni
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

          You’ll pay for that MP. After I complimented your blog and crib and writing..this is the thanks I get. I’m sending you the vodka to try it on first. :twisted:

    • andy
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      Accessing at work using IE8 Gazza

    • crypticsue
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

      Chrome and Firefox work fine at home – not at all surprised to learn it is Internet Explorer at work that is giving problems. :sad:

      • HoofItYouDonkey
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

        By the way, I hope no-one uses Microsoft Edge on Windows 10.
        If so, then all your web-browsing is being logged by Microsoft.

  17. jean-luc cheval
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Everything running fine on Windows Phone. The built in browser must be Explorer. The only thing missing is the list of recent posts. Only have the recent comments. Sure they will reappear soon.
    No time yet for BD to 18a. But as it is his day, I wish him and all the David une bonne fête.
    13a took me ages to parse and get.
    The rest fell in quite nicely.
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review and clips.

    • Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      The Recent Posts and Categories widgets failed for reasons that I don’t currently know but I am investigating.

  18. Omar
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Site working fine for me. Nice easy solve, but good puzzle, nothing too obscure etc……On another topic, does anyone else do the Bare Bones in the Sunday Mail (which I get for my wife!)? – I always find it a gentle but very enjoyable solve….

    • Jaylegs
      Posted March 2, 2016 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      Yes I do Omar, not easy this week 1d “Ne plus ultra” :whistle: What’s that all about!!

  19. Paso Doble
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    Agreement with everyone today…easy but enjoyable in between practicing the new Gibbo. A Fender might be purchased this afternoon.
    Thanks to Mr Ron, Leicester City and Gazza…..

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      One can never have too many guitars.

      • Julian of ec4
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

        Amen to that! But then I only have three…. 😊

        • Tstrummer
          Posted March 2, 2016 at 1:28 am | Permalink

          I have eight. Maybe I need just one more …
          PS Anyone want to buy a beautiful black 1996 Gibson Les Paul Standard, not going cheap?

  20. silvanus
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    More straightforward than even the most benign of Rufus’s offerings, but I thought the snappiness and general quality of the clues was first rate. Very enjoyable indeed despite the brevity of the solve.

    I totally agree with Miffypops and others that this would be an excellent puzzle to initiate a beginner into the wonderful world of cryptic puzzles.

    I’ll plump for 15a as my favourite, as I did like the anagram.

    Many thanks to today’s setter and to Gazza.

    P.S. I also use Internet Explorer and have encountered no problems accessing the site since yesterday. It’s also a great relief to find the automatic user name and e-mail entering facility has returned, yay :smile:

  21. Shropshirelad
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Very glad to see the site back in operation – well done BD. I have to agree with Gazza and the majority of the other comments that this was a straightforward R&W from start to finish – I had to go back for 13a but that was it :sad: Still, it wasn’t a bad puzzle except for the 17d answer. I will say no more as ‘that woman’ makes me seethe…..

    No particular favourite of the day, but thanks to Mr Ron and Gazza.

    Thanks also to MP & SS for their review for yesterday – such a shame it didn’t reach a wider audience.

    For those wanting a bit more of a challenge – the Toughie by Dada is very enjoyable.

    Forgot to wish our Welsh commenters a Happy St David’s Day – I will not show my ignorance by trying to say it in Welsh.

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for the plug SL. I too thought the Dada puzzle very enjoyable. I still have 24 ac to solve. I had to do the Dada in my head as Saint Sharon was not here to fetch me a pen. That always makes a Toughie tougher.

      • Shropshirelad
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

        You’re welcome MP – I know the work it takes to prepare a review. Although, if you can do the Toughie in your head it must be a breeze for you. 24a – no score in tennis.

        • Miffypops
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

          Thanks SL. It is a nice mental challenge. Not easy but doable. Like I said Saint Sharon wasn’t around and I was too comfy to move. There was no choice.

          • Hanni
            Posted March 1, 2016 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

            So you solved the whole puzzle in your head because you were too comfy (lazy) to get a pen? That is impressive!

            • Miffypops
              Posted March 1, 2016 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

              The word comfy is not synonymous with the word lazy.

  22. Spook
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Nice and easy with some excellent clues, glad the site is up and running again, loads of thanks to Big Dave. Site works ok with iPad.
    Thanks to Gazza and setter. Look forward to brain teaser tomorrow.

  23. dutch
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    Have only just been able to access the site, I got “server not found” for most of the day. fairly straightforward puzzle – I enjoyed “wild rose expert” (15a) and I thought 29a read very smoothly (nurse brings in coffee)

  24. Hanni
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:40 pm | Permalink


    • spindrift
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      copy that 10-4

      • Hanni
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:13 pm | Permalink


  25. HughGFan
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    Scarily straight forward- Its been a while since I have been able to finish a puzzle in such a quick time. Agree with some of the other comments an ideal puzzle for a DT novice.

  26. Hilary
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    Is it just me but I am not getting the usual email telling me hints available? Lovely gentle offering to soothe my soggy lttle person as I got soaked doing the shopping this morning the crowning insult being it is a sunny afternoon. Quite liked 18a as it kick started me, worked up then down to find that most of the words had slotted in. No scribbling in the margin. Thanks to setter and Gazza.

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

      Your confidence is soaring Hilary. RayT will bring you back to Earth on Thursday. Meanwhile bask in the glory.

    • Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

      None of the site’s email facilities are working at the moment – it’s top of my “to be fixed” list.

  27. Vancouverbc
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    Agree with Gazza about the ratings and thanks for the review. Captain Pugwash brought back memories and schoolboy humour. Thanks also to the setter. Well done BD for getting us all back together. I wonder what sort of change management process the website provider uses?

    • Sheffieldsy
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

      Or checkpoints, reversion plans and so on?

  28. Merusa
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    That was a really, really easy one! I did enjoy it, though, lots of fun clues.
    Fave was 18a, with 15a a close runner up.
    The site is running like clockwork, BD, you are a star!!
    Thanks to setter and to Gazza for his entertaining review.
    P.S. My name and email address are both present on parade!

  29. mre
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Good afternoon everybody.

    This really was very gentle and threatened one star completion time (which is set to be very difficult to achieve in practice). Not much more to say really.


  30. Brian
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    Very much a R&W except for the bottom right corner which I found a little tricky.
    I thought 13a a stupid clue not up to standard at all.
    Did like 15a though.
    Thx to alL
    PS love the new platform, I can once more NOT have to fill in my details every time on the iPad.😀

  31. Una
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Gazza’s comments.Thanks to all concerned.

  32. Hanni
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Pretty much a R&W, Still not sure what I make of it. Liked 18, 22a and 29a.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Gazza for a great blog and I agree with everything you said.

    Also thanks to SL, who was just about to have to post comments on my behalf and to the wonderful BD for fixing everything.

    Day 4 of the Home Made Toffee Vodka Experiment.

    All of the Werther’s have dissolved and it smells delicious and looks all creamy in the decaff coffee jar I am using to ‘brew’ it in. Top tip. Remember to smash up the Werther’s to tiny pieces first. If all goes well I shall test it on my friends soon

  33. Giovanni
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    I know not which of my worthy colleagues set this puzzle, but it was fine. Yes, it was easy, but there is a room for easy puzzles to help those who are far less experienced than bloggers, who like harder puzzles ( well, sometimes, anyway). In the Quick, though, I am sorry to see that curates (like all Revs) are still all men apparently.

    • crypticsue
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      In crosswordland bellringers appear to be all men too :(

    • stanXYZ
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

      There’s a clue in there somewhere?

    • Wahoo
      Posted March 2, 2016 at 3:27 am | Permalink

      In that case, maybe one day you, as one of the best, would be kind enough to provide a clue that is feminine?

  34. Bluebell
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    Like most people I found this to be one of the quickest solves I have achieved. I did have to check in the dictionary to see that I had 24d correct as it isnt a word I have come across before. Now been filed away in the grey matter

  35. Jon_S
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    A quick and enjoyable solve. Only slowed down by the NE corner, the combination of 6 / 11 / 13 in particular.

  36. Kath
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    Hello all – just in case there’s anyone out there who still remembers me (apart from gazza, see hint for 29a) I’m back.
    We’ve had the most amazing seven week trip – seen new friends (our lovely Kiwis in NZ) and old friends (some from my days as a student nurse in Oxford in late ’60’s/early 70’s) – all absolutely wonderful and it’s also wonderful to be home again which is almost the best bit of all.
    Right now the crossword – I agree it was pretty straightforward although I did miss the anagram indicator at 15a :roll: blame jet lag!
    Now on to the nursing qualification in 29a. Gazza is absolutely right (isn’t he always?!)
    I’ll tell you all a little story:- Once upon a time in the days of Kath et al when nurses knew how to nurse rather than just wander around looking important there were two qualifications – there was the State Registered Nurse (SRN) which was a three year course and we were called Student Nurses and there were State Enrolled Nurses (SEN) which was a two year course and they were called Pupil Nurses. Then the powers that be decided, in their wisdom(?) to change it all so that SRN’s became RN’s (Registered Nurses) and had to get a degree to qualify and SEN’s became EN’s (Enrolled Nurses). It was all a load of utter b******s but I do think that we were all, SRN’s or SEN’s, better than just “bed makers” which was an answer in a Friday crossword a few weeks ago which nearly sent me into orbit! Now I’ll shut up . . .
    Back to the crossword – I liked 12 and 18a – I don’t have a (please note, just the one) favourite.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and to gazza and well done, congratulations and :heart: and :rose: to BD for sorting out all the problems.

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Kath. We are a friendly bunch. Anything you are not sure about just ask. You are sure to get a speedy reply.

    • Paso Doble
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

      Welcome back Kath – you have been missed. So glad you had a brilliant time and, as you say, it’s always so lovely to get home after a long trip which makes it a double whammy!

    • Merusa
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

      Welcome back! So glad you had such an extended holiday in exotic lands!

    • Gazza
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      Welcome home, Kath – it’s great to have you back and good to know that you enjoyed your sabbatical.

    • Kitty
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

      Yay! Welcome home Kath – it’s lovely to see you, and to hear that you had such a good time.

    • Hanni
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:43 pm | Permalink

      Welcome back Kath. We missed you. :rose:

    • Tstrummer
      Posted March 2, 2016 at 1:36 am | Permalink

      Welcome home, Kath. Nurses are the unsung heroes of life in Britain

    • AnntheArt
      Posted March 2, 2016 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Not sure if you will read this Kath but I am glad to see you back. I am a newby commenter here but in my lurking days I used to look forward to reading your comments particularly. I so understand your feelings about how some people apparently have a cavalier attitude to the incredibly demanding work that nurses carry out. It seems that everyone’s been to the doctor, so they are an expert. I used to teach and the same phenomenon exists…everyone’s been to school, so of course they know how it all should be run! ( Rant over). :wink:

  37. HoofItYouDonkey
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    It’s weird isn’t it.
    1*, yet to me, it’s far harder than last Sunday’s.
    Certain setters I just don’t ‘get’.

    • Kath
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

      Cheer up – it’s all to do with wave length ‘stuff ‘ – you’re either on it, off it or have no reception at all. Most people find Monday crosswords the easiest – I have trouble with them most weeks – don’t know why.

      • HoofItYouDonkey
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

        Thanks Kath. Getting there now. DCI Barnaby for the umpteenth time is a good reason to concentrate on the crossword.
        Welcome back.

        • HoofItYouDonkey
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

          Got there in the end…
          Many thanks to the setter and of course to Gazza for the much needed hints…

  38. Hrothgar
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    A wrong envelope day was about due.
    This should have been in the envelope marked ‘Junior Telegraph, Crosswords for Beginners’
    Still, revision is never a bad thing.
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review.

    • hoofityoudonkey
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

      Thanks. That makes me feel better.

      • Merusa
        Posted March 1, 2016 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

        Pay no attention! I can’t tell you how many times everyone rhapsodizes over how easy a puzzle is and I can’t even get a foot in. Sometimes you just can’t get on a setter’s wavelength, just look forward to the next day.

        • HoofItYouDonkey
          Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

          I didn’t.
          It’s easy to forget that everyone was a beginner once.

          • Hrothgar
            Posted March 2, 2016 at 1:11 am | Permalink

            Pleased to be of service.

    • Miffypops
      Posted March 2, 2016 at 1:24 am | Permalink

      Horses for courses. Please can we stop the “Junior crosswords for beginners” comments. They are neither kind true or necessary and therefore should not be uttered.

      • Wahoo
        Posted March 2, 2016 at 3:39 am | Permalink

        Well said MP.

        Just had a quick ganders at tomorrow’s (Weds) puzzle. Another horse for another course, if that makes any sense.

      • Wahoo
        Posted March 2, 2016 at 4:23 am | Permalink

        Having said that, it’s pretty gentle as well!

  39. Heno
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Mr. Ron and to Gazza for the review and hints. Totally agree with Gazza’s ratings, very much a read and write, but as Giovanni commented earlier, a great one for beginners. Favourite was 12a, last in was 25d. there was a bit of humour running through it, I thought.

  40. Gwizz
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    It took me almost as long to get on to the site as it did to complete the crossword! Lovely while it lasted, the crossword that is. Favourite is 29a and overall 1/2.5*. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for his review. And thanks to BD for all his efforts.
    Doing the crossword without the site has been a bit strange to say the least!

  41. Florence
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:58 pm | Permalink

    Thank you BD for all your effort in getting the site up and running again. We all miss it so much when it is down. Today’s puzzle was easy, but as I am full of cold again, it was about as much as I could handle. I have been told by my mother-in-law to buy some rosehip syrup. Hanni’s toffee vodka sounds more appealing. Welcome back Kath, and welcome to all the new folk. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review. Favourite clue was 22a.

  42. Kitty
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

    I agree with the majority and don’t have anything much to add. It’s nice to see a couple of people de-lurking, and would really like to see the end of talk of Junior Telegraph – it always makes me, for one, a little uncomfortable. Welcome to the blog, newbies, and keep commenting so your voices may continue to be heard :yes: .

  43. Tstrummer
    Posted March 2, 2016 at 1:50 am | Permalink

    Years (and I mean years) ago when I worked for the DT and the kids were little, we went camping in Brittany. On the first day of the holiday, I gave them all a handful of francs to go to the shop and treat themselves. They came back with a copy of the DT for me “as a treat”. I didn’t want it – I was on holiday – but to show my appreciation I turned to the back page. I had never done a cryptic crossword before, but picked up my pen and set about it. By the end of the week, I had completed about a quarter of the grid. So I know, and many others know, that apparently easy puzzles can be really difficult for new solvers – and we want to encourage new solvers – so it seems to me to be a bit churlish to dismiss any puzzle as “Junior Telegraph”. I finished this on the train home tonight and while I might have appreciated a stiffer challenge, I know that will come, probably with RayT on Thursday, or Giovanni on Friday, so I’m not bothered. Thanks to Gazza and the mystery setter. 1*/3*

  44. Weekendwanda
    Posted March 2, 2016 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Just done this and not had time to read all the comments yet as I have to get up! However I thought it was great. My quickest ever but lovely clues. So precise – no chance of putting the wrong answer in. If there was a criticism I suppose it would be that you can find the answer without working out the clue. Sometimes I think it must be harder/cleverer to set one that is simple to solve. Thank you setter. I think I have seen one or two recently have I not – 23a and 29a. Thank you.
    Just noticed my name and email has come back without me filling in. Is that thanks to the new whatever.

    • Posted March 2, 2016 at 9:43 am | Permalink

      It may well be. I have been able to stop using the WordPress cache, which I certainly think was responsible for serving up the mobile version to desktop users and vice-versa.

  45. AnntheArt
    Posted March 2, 2016 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Like Weekendwanda I am catching up…only started this late last night because I have to shamefully admit that I do the cryptic to help me get to sleep! But this kept me awake and I would have finished it had I not bunged in a wrong answer at 12a. Which stopped me getting 1d and 3D. Thank you Gazza and I do appreciate your sensitivity re. the difficulty ratings. But hurrah as I found this eminently doable and even had a taste of the deep pleasure of “read and write”. Thank you setter for thinking of us cryptically challenged lot.