DT 28066 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28066 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club
Hosted by Kath

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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.


3a            Stronghold I’m in is very very noisy (10)
Begin with a stronghold or well-defended refuge and follow that with the ‘is’ from the clue and another way of saying ‘very’ which contains the ‘I’m’ from the clue.

8a            Wasted opening in ball game (6)
The first letter (opening) of B(all) is followed by a game of chance also called Bingo.


9a            Model drunk? Take no action (3,5)
A verb to model, or pose for an artist, is followed by a slang way of saying drunk. From this clue and answer and the previous one I’m beginning to spot a bit of a theme here – must be  something to do with the weekend goings-on in Macclesfield!

12a         Planner, furious about wrong name put inside (10)
This one’s a bit ‘Russian Doll’! Begin with a three letter word for really angry or furious – that word contains another three letter word for a wrong or an error which, in its turn, contains yet another word meaning name or call. I wasn’t going to do a hint for this one, mainly because to be entirely honest although the answer was obvious I couldn’t see how it worked – then it came to me and I thought if I’d had trouble then maybe others would have done too.

14a         Quiet trip before marriage causes loud quarrel (8,5)
Begin with a couple of letters requesting a bit of quiet and follow that with a trip or jaunt. The second word is a marriage or a pairing up.

Illustration of a Pair of Teen Siblings Arguing

20a         In my opinion, after gym, boy must go into assembly (10)
A two letter abbreviation for gym or other physical training is followed by an assembly or large gathering of people which contains a boy who is a male relation.

23a         Reported diarist who ordered erotic entertainment (8)
A homophone (reported) of the surname of the famous 17th century diarist followed by an anagram (ordered) of WHO.


26a         Drink on break, and a biscuit (6,4)
An alcoholic drink is followed by a break or a crack.



1d            Special clothes pleased some newspapers (4,4)
A word for pleased or happy about something is followed by a slang word for some of the more disreputable newspapers.

2d            Fired up in fight for knife (8)
The fight can be split into two words 3,2 – they contain (in) a reversal (up) of a short word meaning fired – not fired from a position but set alight.


6d            Special mark obtained by Greek character? About time! (6)
The eighteenth letter of the Greek alphabet (Greek character) contains (about) the one letter abbreviation for T(ime).

7d            Austrian composer and US author heading firstly for island (6)
The US author’s first name is Norman – his surname has an ‘I’ in it – just swap the ‘I’ for the first letter of H(eading) – (heading firstly for Island). This was another one which took me far to long to be able to justify my answer.

15d         Embroidered cloth — videos sample (8)
These outdated ways of recording visual material contained a thin strip which used to get all snarled up if you weren’t very careful – you want the stuff that got tangled up followed by a sample or a taste.


17d         Revered husband acknowledged (8)
The one letter abbreviation for H(usband) is followed by another way of saying acknowledged or granted.

18d         One looking after another round Aintree’s far end in gallop (6)
A person who looks after the needs of another contains the last letter (far end) of (aintre)E.

23d         Spy briefly in plot (4)
A slang word for a spy or someone working in a police operation without its last letter (briefly).

I liked 14 and 23a.

The quickie pun:- (COME) + (FOOT) = (COMFORT)

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.



  1. Angel
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Hi Kath – wow we will have to mind our Ps and Qs today with you as the hostess with the mostest. Thanks for your hints. Anyway this was quite good fun while it lasted which means a few things can be accomplished before acquiring square eyes with the afternoon/evening feast (possibly not for you Kath) of RU – fingers and everything else crossed for an English grand slam. Thank you setter for an easy but entertaining ride.

    • Angel
      Posted March 20, 2016 at 12:03 am | Permalink

      Yay – Grand Slam – Congratulations England …. red rose ((:

  2. Kitty
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    Haven’t looked at the crossword, just wanted to say a big hello from Macclesfield and congratulate Kath on the Saturday hints. Thanks to all, and have a great weekend wherever you may be :) .

  3. Senf
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Reasonably straightforward and completed comfortably before lights out last night. Although, I found one or two head scratchers, such as 8a, and I had some trouble convincing myself that I had got the correct answer,
    Just about ready for the ‘annual slug fest’ also known as the England-France rugby match, Boddington’s is in the fridge. It would be great to see England get the Grand Slam.
    Thanks to the setter and Kath.

    • Caravaggio
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

      You’re going to have to leave those cans of Boddies alone for a while Senf – the kick-off in Paris isn’t until 20:00 GMT. Mind you, if you need an excuse to make a start on them, Wales entertain Italy in the Principality Stadium at 14:30… Like you, this puzzle didn’t cause me any problems but I’d like to compliment Kath on her hints. Well done, Kath!

      • Senf
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:55 am | Permalink

        The wait is the same but start time is 3:00pm where I am (Manitoba, Canada), and I have Guinness if I get time to watch Ireland – Scotland.

  4. Brigham
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    19 down. This should be simple but I cant get it. ??????. feline animal perhaps?

    • Gazza
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog, Brigham.
      I’ve edited your comment to remove the partial answer. Please read the instructions in red at the bottom of the blog.

    • Senf
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:11 am | Permalink

      Hopefully without being sent to the naughty corner – ‘from’ indicates a ‘contained’ answer in the following words for a comic character, who was an up and coming journalist, created by a Belgian author.

    • HoofItYouDonkey
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

      He had a quiff and a nautical friend

  5. Richard
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Thanks for explaining 12a & 7d. It frustrates me to have the right answers but not know why.

    • Kath
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      They were the two that caused me the most trouble – it’s why I picked both to be included in the reduced number of hints given at weekends.

  6. Graham
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    My brain needs a rest after 12A it still took me an age to parse even after the hint.That apart it all went swimmingly. Still can’t believe England chased down 230 runs yesterday splendid result. Many thanks to the 12A & to Kath for her guidance.

  7. Mary
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    Hi Kath, thanks for blog although just about managed without the hints, I don’t quite see how 25a works? I can see that the first three letters are an educational institute and the whole answer is the definition but where do the last three letters come from????? Its probably just me being thick! I can’t believe its almost easter and three months after my New Years resolution to get back on the blog I am really not doing very well … although I do the crossword everyday and even managed a toughie last week, don’t be deceived I still have to have my electronic friends most days!!!! Hope everyone has a lovely Easter back soon …
    PS where have the emojis gone???

    • Kath
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:34 am | Permalink

      Hi Mary – very nice to ‘see’ you! The ‘little faces’ have been removed for a while as BD thinks that they could be at least partly responsible for problems with the site – if they were still here I’d send you a smiley one.
      I confess that I don’t see how 25a works either – that’s why I didn’t do a hint for it – if the little faces were still here I’d do a red-faced one here!
      Help – help – gazza? CS?

      • crypticsue
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        Naughty corner here I come – the first bit is obvious and the second bit refers to IT in the clue. How many times have you heard people say “I didn’t know xx meant xxx”??

      • Gazza
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        The last 3 letters are a word for ‘it’.

        • HoofItYouDonkey
          Posted March 20, 2016 at 7:16 am | Permalink

          ‘It’ as in gender, Gazza???
          Bit far-fetched!!

      • Kath
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:52 am | Permalink

        Thanks both – the number of times that catches me out is positively embarrassing – when will I learn? I was rather hoping that no-one would ask . . .

        • Mary
          Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

          Sorry Kath :) , thanks Sue & Gazza

          • Weekendwanda
            Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:22 am | Permalink

            Always one to remember. I always think of It as a euphemism for the second part of the answer

  8. Florence
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    I found this crossword a real delight over breakfast this morning. Nothing too taxing and lots to smile about. Finished it without help so I now have the feel good factor. Off to the garden centre for stuff to kill the weeds on my patio. It’s that time of year when one hopes the weather will soon cheer up enough to sit in the garden. Lots to do before the rugby starts tonight. Thank you to the setter. I really really enjoyed your puzzle today, and thank you Kath for giving up your time to do the review.

  9. bifield
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    A pleasurable solve for me this morning. 19d took me a long time till the penny dropped and needed the hint to justify my answer for 12a. Thanks to the setter and to Kath for the hints. I hope everybody is having a good time at Macclesfield. I had hoped to go but it was not to be.

    • Angiebaby
      Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      Glad to say that, for once, I managed the whole thing without too much difficulty…except…12a! Took me until this morning to realise I’ d spelt the knife incorrectly in 2d? Aargh

      • Gazza
        Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:49 am | Permalink

        You’ve expanded your alias since your last comment. Both forms should work from now on.

    • Weekendwanda
      Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      Confession – 19d last one in for me. How stupid can one get!

  10. Wahoo
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Setter for an enjoyable puzzle last night */***. I can almost sense a theme about two blokes getting tipsy having a lad’s night out and regretting it when they get back home to their wives.

    Woken early this morning by the tremors from an earthquake in Barbuda – about 60 miles away. Strange way to wake up.

    Thanks to Kath as well.

  11. Angel
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    Not a very nice alarm call – presumably you are in Antigua. I do however envy you your warm temperatures and presumably relaxed living. Hope your terra will now stay firma.

    • Angel
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

      This should have been a ‘reply’ to Wahoo Comment No. 10.

      • Wahoo
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        A smaller island to the west of Antigua. Details show that the centre of the quake (mag 6) was actually about 150 miles east of A & B. No problems, thanks. Yep, another beautiful warm and sunny day over here with gentle breeze! Perfect for watching the rugby!

        • Angel
          Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:17 pm | Permalink


  12. Brian
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable but I thought it was quite tough today. Not at all sure about 23d, seems to me to be a very poor clue. Best for me was 14a which I thought clever. Thx to all

    • Sarah
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

      Yet again I find myself agreeing with you, Brian. I had the answer early on but it was not the best clue ever. I also missed the IT, Kathy, but got the answer because I saw the last three letters as male or female.
      It was certainly entertaining today. Thanks Kathy and thanks to the setter (smiley face, waving)

      • Sarah
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

        Oops Kath not Kathy…that’s my autocorrect sorry ….red face

        • Kath
          Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

          Don’t worry about it – I get called far worse than that all the time!

  13. crypticsue
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    While waiting for our anicent computer to wake back up again, I did the Quick Crossword and discsovered that the two solutions on the bottom row form part of the pun

    I’d also like to hightly recommend the NTSPP

    • Kath
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

      Oh dear – I completely missed that – another red-face!
      I agree about the NTSPP.
      Do you fancy giving that shower in Macclesfield a nudge about some pictures – everyone’s being very good so far – should we threaten bad behaviour if they don’t oblige?

      • Angel
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        For heaven’s sake, I overlooked that too. Thanks CS.

    • williamus
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      This has come as a bit of a shock to me! I’ve had a ritual with the Quick Crossword for many years which involves me doing it in my head without writing anything in… but just enough to get the pun. I’m not that much of a puzzle fanatic to want to do the whole thing… so I never do. Now I discover that there’s a pun in the bottom row as well! Please don’t tell me this is a regular feature…

      • crypticsue
        Posted March 19, 2016 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

        No – a very occasional event

        • williamus
          Posted March 19, 2016 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

          Thank you Sue…

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

    No problems today and no electronic assistance required – for a change!

    The userid and email problem seems to have been sorted out (on my iPad anyway!) I’m very suspicious that some Cookie handling stuff has been changed and nobody is owning up!

    Rugby all the way today and the Hammers are away at Chelsea – there’s only one thing left to say – 🎶Swing Low Sweet Chariot🎶 – Good Luck England!


    • Michael
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      …. Oh and what’s happened to the Emoticons or Emojis or whatever they’re called this week – I miss them otherwise I have to overdo it with the exclamation marks!!

  15. jean-luc cheval
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
    Good fun while it lasted.
    Always confuse the American writer with the one who wrote “a year in Provence”.
    But that’s beside the point.
    Great to have Kath back at work.
    Thanks to the setter and to Kath for the hints.

  16. Ora Meringue
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    I found this harder than the usual Saturday puzzle, but got there in the end thanks to the hints.

    Thanks to the setter and to Kath

  17. Young Salopian
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    No real dramas but an enjoyable and entertaining crossword which I will score 2*/3*.

    Plenty of fun clues, and I particularly liked 23 across.

    Well done and thanks to Kath and our as yet unmasked setter.

    Just a thought on the rugby coverage – Jonathan Davies has said on many occasions that he is speechless, while continuing to prattle away and dominate the commentary. The American way of having two summarisers plus the lead commentator doesn’t work for me. That and the endless replays which often continue over the live play, which we then miss.

    • Wahoo
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

      re JD. And despite all that exposure, his Welsh accent, lovely as it is boyo, seems to get stronger every year!!!

  18. Merusa
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    Most enjoyable puzzle, but, like Kath, while I knew 12a must be correct, I could not find out why. Even reading the hints I could not understand it, eventually I had to write out the word and follow Kath’s instructions.
    Fave was 14a, but 7d was right up there.
    Thanks to setter, and many thanks to Kath for the hints, particularly 12a!

    • Merusa
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

      P.S. Honourable mention to 23a. Thank you Young Salopian for reminding me!

  19. Jane
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

    Not a Saturday puzzle person but just popping in to say ‘Hi’ to Kath and also how nice it is to see you back in the chair. No-one else give us such ‘human’ blogs – your self-confessed blunders give the rest of us hope!

    • Kath
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

      Thank you – in the absence of the ‘little faces’ it’ll just have to be another exclamation mark!

  20. spindrift
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    I’ve got the answer for 25a (I think) but don’t understand why. A nudge please. Or should that be ‘nudge, nudge, say no more squire’). Getting the answer is not the same as solving the clue in my book.

    • crypticsue
      Posted March 19, 2016 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

      There is a discussion about 25a further up the comments (and that’s all I’m saying)

    • Weekendwanda
      Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink


      • Gazza
        Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:46 am | Permalink

        Please read the instructions in red and don’t give alternative clues.

  21. williamus
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    I enjoyed this. By no means read-and-write but relatively straightforward with a few head-scratchers – which is just how I like my crosswords. As is usual for me one or two went in without really understanding why, so I’m always grateful for the blog after completing (and often before!) And what a nice set of hints, thank you Kath. Thanks also to the setter and to BD for the site. I particularly liked 20a and 23a, but 7d shades it as my favourite.

  22. Robin Newman
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

    Upper AND LOWER rows are a phonetic for a rest room (US)

  23. Jon_S
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    One of the easier Saturday puzzles we’ve had for a bit. Pleased to spell 3ac correctly. :-)

  24. JonP
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    I needed thesaurus assistance for 3d, but apart from that minor blip I found it to be relatively plain sailing.

    Thanks to Kath and setter 1.5*/3.5*

  25. Bluebell
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable but it took me a while to get going. I couldnt get anywhere with with the top half initially so I had to start at the lower half and work up. Some very good clues. I liked 14a and 23a in particular.

  26. Mary
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    So does the sad face :(

  27. HoofItYouDonkey
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

    Very enjoyable.
    No idea how 12a is parsed, even after the hint!!!
    Enjoyed 23a as it is one of my favourite TV programs.
    1d reminds me of the Stereophonics!!
    Thanks so much to Kath for the hints and a fair test by the setter, thanks.

  28. Sam
    Posted March 19, 2016 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

    I liked 3a, and I’ve got 21d and 25a but I can’t see why. Struggling with 8a, 12a, 1d, 3d and 16d. I’m a big Pooh fan but I can’t ever remember C.R. having a nurse although I guess she was …..

    • HoofItYouDonkey
      Posted March 20, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink


      • crypticsue
        Posted March 20, 2016 at 9:29 am | Permalink

        Sorry HYD but that’s definitely part alternative clue.

        • Kath
          Posted March 20, 2016 at 9:34 am | Permalink

          I so nearly did a hint for that one and would probably have said something similar – good thing I didn’t.

      • Kath
        Posted March 20, 2016 at 9:32 am | Permalink

        Yes – they are. 1d reminded me of the Stereophonics too – I ended up singing it all day.

  29. Weekendwanda
    Posted March 20, 2016 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Thanks setter and Kath. I would never have worked out 12a without the hint despite having the answer

  30. Heno
    Posted March 20, 2016 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to the setter and Kath for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, with a few tricky clues. I couldn’t parse 3&12a,&7,19,23d. So thanks to Kath for the explanations. Last in was 8a, favourite was 12a. Was 3*/3* for me.

  31. Collywobbles
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the hints Kath. They were up to your usual standard. And helped me finish. Thanks also to Giovani for a well crafted, and tricky at times, crossword
    BD. I’m not getting my daily e.mail with the hints. Do I have to apply again?

    • Posted April 1, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      There is a technical problem with sending emails to certain addresses and the hosting company are looking into it.