DT 28069 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28069

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28069

Hints and tips by ShropshireLad

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

Yes, it’s me again. This time standing in for the 2K’s while they take a well-earned break. Today’s puzzle from Jay is definitely at the easier end of his range – he must be taking pity on me. I fairly rattled through it, which is a pity as it was over far too soon. It’s a really enjoyable solve.

The definitions are underlined and if my hints don’t quite hit the spot for you, you can view the answer by clicking on the grey ‘Click Here’ button. Don’t click on if you don’t need to. I believe some people aren’t getting the answers covered at the moment, but BD is aware of that and is on the case.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


1a    Material for building split windscreen? (11)
BREEZEBLOCK: A type of brick by a play on words if you split windscreen 4,6. Lovely clue.

9a    Keep an eye on extra responsibility of a bishop (7)
OVERSEE: A charade of a 4 letter term for ‘extra’ and an area a bishop would look after.

10a    One amongst celebrities in flight (6)
STAIRS: Take the letter ‘I’ (one) and put it into (amongst) what celebrities are called. Not ‘slebs’ or ‘blisters (sic)’

12a    Hurried back to evaluate recount (7)
NARRATE: A 3 letter word for ‘hurried’ reversed (back) and a term for ‘to evaluate’.

13a    Mostly flog salmon, perhaps being greedy (7)
SELFISH: Take a 4 letter word to describe a sales transaction (flog) and remove the last letter (mostly) and add the general term for a salmon, brill etc.. It’s mine, all mine

14a    Quits after delayed start to rugby game (5)
EVENS: Take a form of Rugby Union with less players (rugby game) and remove the first letter (delayed start).

15a    Follow team’s first draw away (9)
SIDETRACK: A charade of a term ‘to follow, as in hunt’ and what a team is generally referred to, and move that to the front (team’s first).

17a    Stormy signs and poor outlook (9)
PROGNOSIS: Anagram (stormy) of SIGNS + POOR.

20a    Daughter has drinks in one! (5)
DOWNS: Usual abbreviation for ‘daughter’ and add a term for ‘possess’s’.

22a    Saw how the drinks may be served at room temperature? (7)
NOTICED: Split 3,4 the answer would be – the drinks lacked a cooling medium.

24a    Remark old boys initially are of use (7)
OBSERVE: Take the first letters (initially) of ‘old boys’ and a term used for ‘to wait upon’.

25a    Stop moving band around room for broadcast (6)
FREEZE: A homophone (broadcast) of a decorative band around the room. I got my knickers in a twist with this – so thanks to BD & Gazza for setting me straight.

26a    One might crow when nothing appears in the duty list (7)
ROOSTER: A 6 letter term for a ‘duty list’ and place ‘O’ (nothing) into (appears in) said duty list.

27a    What a builder might use to maintain equanimity? (6,5)
SPIRIT LEVEL: Cryptic &lit – Does what it says on the tin.


2d    Monkeys developed scars around nails intermittently (7)
RASCALS: Anagram (developed) of SCARS and n(A)i(L)s (intermittently).

3d    Teams with points must get refreshments (9)
ELEVENSES: Another term for teams (not sides) in a numerical sense with 2 compass points added.

4d    Provides comfort stops after leader goes (5)
EASES: A 6 letter word for ‘stops’ with the first letter removed (after leader goes).

5d    Flier‘s feet all at sea (7)
LEAFLET: Anagram (at sea) of FEET ALL.

6d    Island company reproduced cars, importing one (7)
CORSICA: Standard 2 letter abbreviation for ‘company’ followed by an anagram (reproduced) CARS and placing (importing) the letter ‘I’ (one).

7d    Token piece of glass that’s put on bed (11)
COUNTERPANE: The ‘token’ here is an item that can be used in board games (Uckers, for one) and a piece of glass you would find in a window.

8d    University qualification needing source of cash for good rule (6)
DECREE: What you receive when successfully completing your education and swap the abbreviation for ‘good’ with the first letter (needing source) of ‘cash’.

11d    Poet or speaker as he develops (11)
SHAKESPEARE: Anagram (develops) of SPEAKER AS HE.

16d    Academic programme supporting police inspector’s discussion (9)
DISCOURSE: An academic programme you would undertake after (supporting, in a down clue) with an abbreviated police officer and the ‘s’ from the clue.

18d    Reveal cut in exposed rock (7)
OUTCROP: A 3 letter term for ‘reveal’ (as in coming ???) and term for ‘cut’ used in a barber shop.

19d    Kind of industry sounding fresh and comprehensible (7)
NUCLEAR: Homophone (sounding) of ‘fresh’ and ‘comprehensible’

20d    Get undressed, seeing bride’s worried about love (7)
DISROBE: Anagram (worried) of BRIDES containing (about) the score for ‘nothing’ in tennis (love).

21d    Conflict many think and hope originally generates affection (6)
WARMTH: A term for a conflict between armies and the single letter abbreviation for ‘many’ with the initial letters (originally) of ‘think’ and ‘hope’ shows (generates) the answer.

23d    Stayed, as doctor’s beginning on scar (5)
DWELT: Take the initial letter of ‘Doctor’ (doctor’s beginning) and a type of ‘scar’.

Well, that’s me for this week – I do hope you find the hints helpful. My favourite and first one in is 1a. What clue did you like most?

The Quick Crossword pun: forty+chewed=fortitude

106 comments on “DT 28069

  1. Bang on wavelength for this one (which was a huge relief after my recent run of form) and very much enjoyed it.

    Noticed some repeated elements (TEAMS, DRINKS and BUILDING/BUILDER all appeared twice in the clues, as did EVENS and EEZE in the grid).

    1a and 27a are my picks today.

    Many thanks to Jay and to SL.

  2. P.S. I also liked the quickie pun and of course the picture for 21d. And I’m sure your hints would have hit the spot if I’d needed help in that department.

    1. Thought you’d like the 21d pic!
      Yes, it was a relief for me as well following the battle with the Rookie and yesterday’s Samuel, which everyone else seemed to find easy!

      1. The Rookie’s still on my big list of things I promised to do. I doubt I’d have found Samuel easy – I just have a big block with Toughies.

        1. I have a total mental block with Toughies too – if it’s called a Toughie I know I can’t do it, usually. Have a go at yesterday’s – sorry Jane, I know you found it tricky.

          1. I didn’t have time for it but looked at the review, to help me learn about those devices only seen in Toughies. 1a was enough to make me glad I didn’t attempt it, even if there were plenty of accessible clues in there too.

            Having a neat collection of mad hats I tend to get on ok with PJ, so will have a go at him today.

          2. I agree. The very name “toughie” gives me a mental block. I keep telling myself that I should at least TRY, I might like them!

  3. I strolled through the East side then the West Side was a little more demanding but nothing overwhelming. Not sure how quits equates with 14a solution. Long time since I have heard reference to 3d. 25a last to go in but it became my Fav. **/****. Thanks Jay and SL.

    1. I cannot seem to post a ‘reply’ so I’m trying a separate post in response to Angel’s query about 14a.
      We’re quits means we’re evens….or at least it does is my neck of the woods.

      Great crossword thanks to Shropshirelad for the hints.

  4. Fairly straight forward, with the exception of 25a. Sorry even with the hints I dont understand the cryptic definition. My favourites were 1a and 19d. Many thanks to the setter and for the hints.

        1. I’m definitely the fool. I of course meant to say homophone rather than synonym …. red face :-)

    1. As per my comment above, it was also my last to go in and then the penny finally dropped. Think of a synonym for the solution (something which goes around the room).

    2. 25a was my last one in – I knew what the answer had to be, but I couldn’t get a certain 60’s / 70’s rock band out of my head. Sometimes you just can’t see the woods for the ‘freeze’ :)

  5. I thought this was going to be my second fill in but no, came to a grinding halt in SW resorted to hints to sort out.
    Thanks to Shropshirelad and to Jay whose puzzles I find slightly easier.

  6. Very gentle but quite enjoyable and generally a R&W (*/***).

    No favourite although 13a brought a smile last night.

    Thanks to Jay and SL

  7. Did this one in record (but unspecified) time. Only mildly challenging, but quite enjoyable. 1.5*/2.5*

  8. I just love parties.
    Especially Reunions.
    And this was it.
    They were all there.
    All very god and trusted old friends and just one newcomer , 1a.
    Revision is never a bad thing.
    Many thanks, setter.
    And many thanks to ShropshireLad.

  9. Nice puzzle. My only gripe is that I cannot find in any dictionary 1a spelt as one word. Thanks to setter and SL.

    1. Rod: 1a. I’ve looked in 3 dictionaries (inc. OED) in this library, plus Collins Online and they all list breeze block as two words, none as one word. But my BRB is at home. It seems there’s an anomaly here?

  10. What a lovely breeze of a puzzle with plenty of humour – just the thing!
    Needed to get 14a before the penny dropped re: 3d, but no major hold ups.
    Happy to go along with SL’s choice of 1a as favourite and also have ticks by 13,22&27a plus 7d. Can’t quite bring myself to add 19d to the list although it was indeed a clever clue.

    Many thanks to Jay for a bright start to the day and to SL for another top notch review – you’re getting rather good at this!

  11. Took a while to parse 1a-probably the best clue, straight forward after that ,a */*** for me, also liked 27a.Thanks setter for an amusing puzzle and ditto for Shropshire Lad.

  12. The usual great Wednesday crossword – the usual trouble with my last few answers – so 2* (plus a little bit for the problems) and 4* for enjoyment.
    I whizzed through quite a lot of this and then ground to a complete halt with about five answers to go – got there in the end with 25a and 23d being the last ones.
    14a took a while as I was thinking of the other meaning of ‘quits’ and with the ‘monkeys’ in 2d I was hunting for a particular kind of ‘monkey’ – oh dear!
    I have to say that I don’t care much for Gollum – he’s not known for his looks, is he – but, like Kitty, I loved the pic for 21d.
    I liked 20 and 27a and 18d and 6d – even after our amazing trip 6d is still my favourite place on earth. My favourite clue was 1a.
    With thanks to Jay and to SL – I think you should award yourself a bit of rest now! :-)

    1. I too looked for a make of monkey Kath. There used to be dozens of them in the monkey cemetery in Coventry..

          1. It’s just not. The zulu however…damn got the b***** song going around my head again. Did you manage to get the artificial grass cut with the John Deer?

              1. Damn. I hoped you wouldn’t notice. No such look. It lucked wrong when I typed it too.

  13. Nice straightforward puzzle */***😃 A lot of clever clues but I liked 17a & 7d 😘 Thanks to SL & J 👍

    My answers on the blog are now covered as before, thanks BD

  14. Am I the only one having trouble posting comments today? Every time I hit “Post Comment” a nasty little thingie with about six “Warnings” comes up. Then, when I try again to send my comment it tells me that it’s a duplicate comment and that it looks as if I’ve already said it. :-(

      1. Kath. No, it’s happened to me every time this morning! Ignore the warning, go back to the blog, click on Refresh and your comment will come onto the screen.

    1. Me too, Kath, with all those intimidating Warnings but I do find that in spite of them the Comment has gone through.

    2. Oh good – so glad that it’s not just me – I was beginning to think that someone was trying to tell me something!

      1. I think it’s part of WordPress..something to do with polls as the name suggests. Sounds a bit odd I have to say.

  15. **/** for me – like others was stumped for a long time by 25a (though obvious once you see it) – 20a made me smile….

  16. Fun crossword. Favourites were 1a and 25a. 1a would have read better with 1 word omitted. Thanks to all.

    1. split is there to “split” windscreens into wind + screens – making it a fair clue. I think it works in the surface too – unless you were thinking of a different word?

  17. Good fun today while it lasted. More fun to be had reading the letters page. Particularly the letter entitled ‘Breakfast In Bed’ and thinking what Kath’s comments might be

    1. Kath was thinking that we can now add toast-making to bed-making as being the things that qualified nurses spend three years learning how to do!! Hiss and spit!!! She was just wondering about writing to the paper and saying as much . . .

      1. Ooh, yes, do write in. You would improve the (already brilliant) letters page no end.

      2. Complicated stuff is toast. It’s got be browned just right. I must remember to ask my mother whether toast making was part of her training.

    2. Saint Sharon trained for three years to qualify as an SRN. I have often wondered why it takes so long to train somebody to

      A. make beds.
      B. Say repeatedly “No more than two to a bed” at visiting time
      C. Say “There there” to poorly patients
      B Make tea.

      Perhaps Kath can explain

  18. For Toughie Types amongst you, Samuel left a nice message on yesterday’s toughie blog. At 5.31am. It seems he is an early bird like me

  19. I agree with MP at #17 that this was good fun while it lasted, which wasn’t long. */**** from us with fav 1a.

    Thanks to Jay and SL.

  20. Thanks to Jay and to Shropshire Lad for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one a lot, but got stuck on the last few answers. Had a brain 25a, and put in notated. Needed the hint for 19d, would never have thought of that. 13a made me laugh, but my favourite was 20a. Was 3*/3* for me.

  21. A quick solve but great fun. 1a was a delight, 2d made me smile when I read the clue and smile more when I got the answer. I had to ask about the rugby part of 14a, bit embarrassed about that and we lost the quiz last night. That has nothing to do with the puzzle just that engineers are inexplicable.

    1a gets the favourite award with 2d getting a mention as it has monkeys in.

    Many thanks to Jay and to SL for another great blog.

    Cold on the moors and I don’t think I’ll get the opportunity to ride. Another day.

    1. I’m sure I’ve told you off before for disparaging remarks about engineers young lady. Take this as your final warning (stern faced emotithingy with sunglasses on and chewing bubble gum)

      This my blog today and………I have access to vet comments.

      1. Hehe…wondered if you’d bite!

        However I stand by my comment. Last night at the quiz I watched three of them try to calculate the height of Big Ben (the tower not the bell). They did this using maths/physics and other such nonsense. They were off by about 40m. BD got the answer right. BD wasn’t actually at the quiz…I just happened to be emailing him at the time.

        This is not the first time they have engaged in pointless drawing and calculations whilst we try and provide actual answers. You try swopping your sheet with other teams when your paper is littered with bizarre drawings and equations…you get all sorts off odd looks. The other teams have taken to giving the drawings marks out of 10.

        See inexplicable…*cool smiley face*.

            1. No. I would have taken the quiz setter to task for such a stupid question. The bell (Big Ben) hangs in the belfry of Elizabeth Tower (re-named in honour of our Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012). THAT tower is 96m high and the bell itself (Big Ben) is 2.28m high and 2.75m wide.

              1. Pedantism at its finest SL. You’re right about the 96m thing. I think our answer was 132m.

  22. Enjoyed this, nice surface throughout, and my favourite clue is 3d (teams with points).

    Many thanks Jay and thanks Shropshirelad for two blogs in a row – you’ve earned another glass of wine

  23. I wondered if seeing a jay just outside my kitchen window before I tackled the puzzle would be a good omen, and so it proved! Very straightforward, with thankfully after yesterday the return of exceptionally elegant cluing and ultra-smooth surfaces. Extremely enjoyable while it lasted.

    Difficult to choose a favourite, but I’ll plump for 15a.

    Many thanks to Mr. Mutch and to SL, you have drawn the long straw with today’s puzzle certainly.

  24. Re. 7 down. When Bill Bryson first came to England, he stayed at a B and B in Dover.
    The landlady exhorted him to ‘turn down the ……….. before he got into bed’. He spent
    quite a bit of time trying to fiddle with the window before retiring.

    1. I thought of exactly the same thing when I filled in 7d!!

      I’m a huge Bill Bryson fan although I haven’t yet read The Road to Little Dribbling, which is his long awaited sequel to Notes From A Small Island which included the above-mentioned incident.

        1. I’ve been waiting for it to come out in paperback, Hanni. I’m definitely looking forward to reading it. I’ve heard the film of A Walk In The Woods was disappointing but I haven’t seen it either.

      1. I’m a big fan of Bryson too. Another author / travel writer I enjoyed was Pete McCarthy, his book ‘McCarthy’s Bar: A Journey of Discovery in Ireland’ had me in stitches. I’m going to have to rifle through the attic now – see what you’ve done.

    2. Saint Sharon trained for three years to qualify as an SRN. I have often wondered why it takes so long to train somebody to

      A. make beds.
      B. Say repeatedly “No more than two to a bed” at visiting time
      C. Say “There there” to poorly patients
      B Make tea.

      Perhaps Kath can explain

    3. Bryson is a talented writer but he did tend to go for the easy cheap shots in Notes From A Small Island. It is not difficult to pick out the grubby guest house which is likely to give something to take the mickey out of. He researched well to find stuff that didn’t quite work. It is enough to say that he still lives in England.

  25. Probably, no definitely, the easiest crossword for me to date but fell at the last hurdle with 23d. Hey ho!

  26. Completed over a beautiful cup of Irish tea 🍵 romantically called “on the road to Galway” brought back by some friends.
    Liked the building clues in 1a and 27a but favourite is 15a for it’s surface.
    Thanks to Jay for this excellent crossword and to SL for an equally excellent review.

  27. Thanks to Jay and SL . A write in the park ! but most enjoyable */**** Liked 1a ,25a and 19d amongst others

  28. Due to several far too busy days we ended up doing all three of this week’s crosswords this morning. We really enjoyed all of them as they were mainly gentle and entertaining. We have had a new cooker delivered and all our computers, printers etc fiddled around with, all against the backdrop of yapping puppies who like to get up at 5.30 in the morning. Now we are back in our stride, we might try yesterday’s Toughie later! Many thanks to SL and to Jay.

  29. Absolutely superb puzzle today IMHO. Everything tied nicely together a la Giovanni, no leaps of faith or not quite right clues, just pure pleasure. For me **/*****
    However, the quick crossword as quite horrid!
    Thx to all

  30. I was a bit stumped with 25a. The only bands around my rooms have been dado rails. Spent ages trying to do something with dado !! Realised that 2d was an anagram but like others, was looking for the wrong sort of monkey. Favourite was 1a. Thank you Jay, and shropshirelad for your efforts.

  31. Good afternoon everybody.

    An unexpected joint effort today and rather too straightforward all round.


  32. Even though this was pretty straightforward, it was hugely enjoyable.
    There were too many fun clues to have a fave, but 1a and 25a were particularly good.
    Thanks to Jay and Shropshirelad for his review. Loved the pic at 21d.

  33. My answers aren’t covered at the moment. Hope you manage to fix that soon. Many thanks!

  34. Always frustrating when you hit the wall about half way through, check the blog, and everyone has found this a breeze.
    Still, like Robert The Bruce’s spider, I shall persevere, but expect to come a distant second.

    1. Thanks SL for doing my crossword too!!!
      Hopeless, but there is always tomorrow!!!
      Seriously, thanks SL for the hints and the setter for making me look stupid!!!

  35. Late posting today as did the puzzle on a train journey to Oxford. A terrific crossword with some nice humour thrown in. Loved 1 across, but there were so many great clues.

    Thanks to Jay and SL for your hard work. I had a go at the Toughie as well as I had a paper copy rather than my usual iPad, and it lived up to its name. I still have 5 to do, but I suspect I shall give up and sneak a peek at the hints.

    1. It’s windscreen which has to be split 4,6 to make wind (breeze) and screen (block).

  36. Really enjoyable puzzle, first glimpse looked difficult!, but then it all fell into place, particularly appreciated 22a. Didn’t need SL on this occasion, but thanks anyway, and to the setter.

  37. This has to be a record for me. Started at ****pm finished at ****pm. Some really great clues, too many to mention.

  38. I’m back from the most beautiful country I have ever seen. Thankfully, my jetlag didn’t stop me from appreciating this excellent offering from Jay, which slotted together in one pass. Great clues and fun answers. Can’t choose a favourite, so won’t. Many thanks to Jay and SL, who seems to have been working overtime in my absence. Off to unpack the world’s heaviest suitcase.

    1. Nice to see you TS! Next time you go away, give the ones that do Planefinder a bit of a chance re flight number. We finally found you over Watford! And that can’t be a happy situation. You try doing 10 codeshares!

      However…Canada is just the most amazing place isn’t it?

      Everyone has been remarkably sensible in your absence, how dull.

      Good to have you back.

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