DT 28142 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 28142

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28142

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Hola from Los Alcázares to where I have retreated with a stidkig code id the dose. I recommend you avoid these hints like the plague because they are probably highly infectious.  Hopefully not with plague but some sort of Canarian lurgy which pommette picked up in Tenerife and has now generously passed on to me.

Fortunately I don’t think many of you will need the hints today.  There are five fairly straightforward anagrams to get you going and a few gimmes as well.  Once checkers are in place the other trickier clues will probably fall into place as they did for me.  There’s a few smiles along the way and a couple of off the wall definitions so I’ve gone for **** for enjoyment. I have an idea who the setter might be but I’m not saying yet, you all know my record in that area.

As usual the ones I liked most are in blue.  The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons.  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.


6a           Source of power in Rome gone, displaced (6-4)
ENGINE ROOM:  An anagram (displaced) of IN ROME GONE.  A nice anagram to get you started is always pleasant.

8a           Reportedly useless means for gauging wind (4)
VANE:  Something used to show the direction of the wind sounds like (reportedly) a word meaning useless or futile.

9a           Law operative given a lead? (6,3)
POLICE DOG: A part of the constabulary which might well have a lead.

11a         Online reference for short golf course (4)
LINK:  One of the “click here” thingies which take you from one web site to another is a seaside golf course without its last letter (short).

12a         Fool that may be picked, critically (3)
NIT:  If you put the word PICKED after this fool you get a word meaning spoke critically, as in raised  petty objections or was overly pedantic.

13a         Utter it, for instance, going to church (9)
PRONOUNCE:  The part of speech that IT can be an example of (for instance) is followed by (going to) the abbreviation for the Church of England.

16a         One-time premier artiste denies embraces (4)
EDEN:  This one-time Prime Minister is lurking in (embraces) the rest of the clue.

17a         Learner following cheats at work — traditional schoolboy resource? (7)
SATCHEL:  An anagram (at work) of CHEATS followed by the usual learner.

18a         Period recalled in very new part of mosque (7)
MINARET:  The part of a mosque from which the muezzin calls the faithful to prayer is a long period of time reversed (recalled) and inserted (in) into a word meaning very new or untouched.

20a         Prevent bowls rolling backwards (4)
STOP:  Some bowls or containers reversed (rolling back).  I briefly wondered if this might be something to do with the American use of the word bowl meaning cup, as in Superbowl etc.  We then have a colloquial English term for cups or trophies reversed but that’s probably way too obscure.

21a         A parliamentarian’s sent in to court part of French board (9)
CAMEMBERT:  A (from the clue) and a word for someone who sits in the House of Commons are inserted (sent in to) the abbreviation for court to give you part of a French cheese board.

23a         Pressure to avoid item broadcast (3)
AIR:  You need another word for an “item” as in you and your partner and remove (to avoid) the P(ressure) from the beginning.

24a         Figure of veneration in entertaining company (4)
ICON:  Start with IN (from the clue) and insert (entertaining) the usual abbreviation for company.

25a         Very welcoming dame prone to get excited (4-5)
OPEN ARMED:  An anagram (to get excited) of DAME PRONE.

29a         Cautious manner restrains king (4)
WARY:  A manner or method has inserted into it (restrains) one of the abbreviations for king.

30a         Lady toils busily around yard changing sides? (10)
DISLOYALTY:  An anagram (busily) of LADY TOILS placed around Y(ard).


1d           Sudden  work by a photographer (4)
SNAP:  Double definition.  Sudden as in a sudden spell of cold weather is also an informal word for a photograph.

2d           Determination that’s needed to control an estate (4)
WILL:  What helps to sort out what you want doing with your estate after you’ve died.

3d           Luxury car kept in warmer climes (4)
MERC:  This is actually an abbreviation for a marque of luxury car and it’s lurking (kept in) in the rest of the clue.

4d           Overlook fellow blocking traffic marker (7)
CONDONE:  A university fellow is inserted (blocking) into one of those irritating things put out to close a lane on a motorway for example.  I wonder how many of these things are on the highways of the UK at any given moment?

5d           How an all-round athlete competes whatever happens (2,3,5)
IN ANY EVENT:  A sort of cryptic definition of what a truly all-round athlete might be able to compete in is also a phrase meaning whatever happens.

7d           Attractive element that’s good in French painter is linked to medium (9)
MAGNETISM:  Start with a French painter who is credited with inspiring the impressionist movement and insert (in) a G(ood). Follow this with IS (from the clue) and M(edium).  The surface of this one doesn’t quite work for me.

8d           Left in election following excellent change of direction (5-4)
VOLTE FACE:  Insert L(eft) into an election or poll and after that you need F for Following and lastly a colloquial term for excellent. Split that lot (5,4) to get the answer.

10d         Lodge out of the South presumably (3)
INN:  A lodge as in a hotel if split (2,1) would be a phrase meaning not in the south but somewhere else.

13d         GB capital’s altered former supermarket giveaway (7,3)
PLASTIC BAG:  An anagram (altered) of GB CAPITALS is something that supermarkets used to give you for free but now you have to pay for.  In the name of the environment of course and nothing at all to do with making money for the supermarkets. Cynical, moi?

14d         Old drink holder in another, clearly empty — sign of hotel guests? (9)
OCCUPANCY:  Start with O(ld) because that’s the easy bit.  Now, after that you need something which may hold a drink, your morning tea perhaps, and insert it (in) into another thing that might hold a drink. If that wasn’t enough you now need to empty out all the internal letters from C(learl)Y to leave the CY and stick them on the end.  That one was a lot easier to solve than hint!

15d         Six deliveries — company put in too many (9)
OVERCROWD:  Six deliveries in cricket followed by a word for company or large group of people.

19d         Small measurement seen to be faulty? It’s huge (7)
IMMENSE:  A small measurement (1/1000 of a metre) followed by an anagram (to be faulty) of SEEN.

22d         Pub  to exclude  lawyers (3)
BAR:  Something we don’t see very often – A triple definition!

26d         Nothing in cash machine? Not big matter (4)
ATOM:  The three-letter acronym for a hole-in-the-wall has O (nothing) inserted (in).

27d         Dinner, maybe, from tin, say, that’s timeless (4)
MEAL:  Take a T out of (that’s Timeless) what the element tin is an example of.

28d         Day in court? (4)
DATE:  Double definition.  Court as in woo.

You get your money’s worth with this puzzle as there are 32 clues which is a few more than average methinks. Quite a few of them are pretty good ones but my favourite was 9a.  What about you?

Quickie pun:    four + castor  =  forecaster


61 comments on “DT 28142

  1. Enjoyable puzzle today which didn’t take me long to unravel, but I was held up briefly by 8d.

    Thanks to pommers and setter 1.5*/4*

  2. Blooming marvellous. Loved every minute of it. Thanks to the setter (PJ)? (Seamus)? Thanks Pommers. At first I thought this would be difficult but it went together quite well. The lurker is one of the best ever

  3. Very smooth surfaces , so smooth I glided over them and had to reread some clues ,such as 16a, several times .I really enjoyed this puzzle.
    Thanks pommers , get better soon. Thanks also to the setter.

  4. 24 across was my favourite it just works . Lots of easy short words managed the whole thing in xxxxxxxxxxxx. What else is there to go after retirement ? JLO

    1. Adding a strange url to your details sent this into moderation.

      I’ve removed the time you took as the convention here is not to mention times as it can upset others who take longer.

      1. I know you never mention times, CS, but – to be honest – learning that you’ve completed the back-pager, the Beam and the Guardian puzzles all before 11.48 is also fairly upsetting!

  5. 2*/3*. I found this enjoyable but not too tough. As others have commented the surfaces were almost all very smooth, with only 7d sticking out like a sore thumb.

    With lots of potential favourites to pick from, I’m going for 10d, which is an inspired clue for a three letter answer.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to pommers.

  6. Very enjoyable, a mixture of clever, funny and some simple clues to help it along. Favourites were 5d, 13d and 14d. Many thanks to the setter and to pommers for the hints

  7. I was going to leave a comment, but that Canarian lurgy sounds like something best avoided. Does one get Canarian lurgy from eating canaries? Oh well, I shall hold my breath and continue …

    I really enjoyed this and am struggling to pick a favourite. I need to breathe now, so don’t have time to. The blue ones are all good, and many of the others, including 19d.

    Thanks to the setter (I’ll take a wild stab at Shamus) and to pommers for a most entertaining blog written in less than ideal conditions. Get well soon. :rose:

  8. I can empathise with Pommers as I, too, am suffering with the after effects of a ‘summer’ cold. This puzzle didn’t hold me up too long unfortunately, as the lousy weather meant I would have liked a longer tussle. That said, this was hugely enjoyable and well worth the effort. 10 down just takes the top podium position because of its simplicity. Like MP, I really liked the lurker.

    Overall, 2*/4* with thanks to Mr Ron, if it was indeed he, and to Pommers.

  9. Really entertaining stuff – thanks to Shamus (?) and to pommers. I particulary liked all the 3 and 4-letter clues and I’ll pick 23a, 24a and 10d as my top choices.

  10. Having ennjoyed this one and then tussled with Mr T in the middle of hte paper, I then went on to enjoy our Sunday setter’s puzzle in today’s Guardian which I highly recommend to all his fans.

    THanks to the setter (I thought Shamus) and to pommers

      1. I did spot the theme but I didn’t know the significance of today’s date, which I had to Google, so thanks for that.

  11. Shamus is the name that we have pencilled in the.margin too. All good fun and much appreciated.
    Thanks Mr Ron and pommers.

  12. Thought this was 2*/3* today. Had to browse the free dictionary to get the second word of 8d, never having heard the expression (f for following? Really? Thanks for explaining it.). Last in was 28d after i finally cracked 30a (took a while!).
    Thanks all.

    1. f is used to refer to a following page. As I understand it if you refer to page 4f you mean page 4 and the one following. 4ff would refer to page 4 and two or more following pages.

  13. More difficult than a 2* for me – at least 3* and 4* for enjoyment.
    Managed to get answers for everything – 7d was a wrong one (magnesium) so no wonder I didn’t understand it – but working out why for several of them caused trouble.
    Needless to say I missed 16a.
    I tried to make 18a an anagram of ‘very’ with something else in it for a part of a mosque I didn’t know. Dim – it’s the only part of a mosque that I do know.
    I needed the hint to explain 10d.
    I liked 14 and 22d. My favourite was either 9 or 12a.
    With thanks to whoever set this one and to pommers for doing the hints while feeling grotty – hope you get better soon. :rose:
    Why have I always thought that football was a game, or sport or whatever, played in winter. :unsure:

    1. I don’t know what the weather is like on the moors…they have disappeared under incredible fog, so I suspect it’s quite sunny.

  14. Really enjoyed this one despite making a sterling attempt to get ‘incumbent’ to work for 21a and getting obsessed with something to do with Green Shield stamps for 13d!
    Thought all the three-letter answers were very well clued but my favourite is a dead heat between 9a&5d.

    Many thanks to Mr. Ron (can’t decide between PJ and Shamus) and to the valiant Pommers for soldiering on to bring us the review. You have my commiserations, Pommette!

    Can someone put me out of my misery re: the Quickie pun?

      1. The best weatherman story I remember is in the old days when they used to attach words to the map by magnets.

        On this particular day Bert Ford had spelt out the word ‘F O G’ on the map, during the course of the broadcast the ‘F’ fell off.

        Bert carried on regardless until the end when he rounded it off the immortal words ‘I’m sorry about the F in Fog’ – priceless!

    1. I also got stuck on incumbent for a long while but Green Shield stamps made me laugh!

  15. Nice crossword, especially as it is Thursday 😊 **/**** Thanks to Pommers for the usual nice blog and to the Setter who has freed up the rest of the day for me. I really liked 9a & 21a 😜 Please explain the expression “Flaming June” 😢

  16. Do you think that in 7d “medium” is intended, cryptically, to mean the materials used in painting, such as oils, say, to link with “French painter”?

  17. 15d. If “two’s company, but three’s a crowd”, can we say that company and crowd are synonymous? Just a thought!

  18. I was happily filling in all the answers until 4d brought me to a complete halt. No idea why, but it took me ages to unwind. Otherwise it would have been a pleasant stroll in the park.
    I’ll nominate 4d as favourite because I couldn’t immediately solve it. 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and to the poorly pommers.
    Ps. ‘Flaming’ does have other meanings you know Jaylegs….

  19. Just one minor hiccups in 17a where I wrote “latches” at first.
    Had to check the BRB for the weathercock in 8a.
    Agree that the short words were the best.
    Thanks to our mystery setter and to pommers for the review.

  20. **/****. Enjoyable solve with a nice mix of anagrams and Lego clues. 9a made me smile. Thanks to the setter and Pommers for the review.

  21. Brilliant brilliant brilliant. I quite liked this.

    Such cleverly constructed clues giving so many smiles. Nearly put ‘occupants’ for 14d but the error of my ways became apparent.

    I really can’t decide between 9a and 22d as my favourite so I will let them battle it out.

    Many thanks to the setter (and no I am not guessing) and to Pommers for a fab review despite being under the weather. Hope you feel better soon.

    The moors and still shrouded in fog/cloud but that did not deter a ride out. And what fun that was. In case anyone doesn’t know there is football ball game on the TV. I know this as friends keep texting me random things like “Engeeerland Engeeerland Vaaaarrrrrdddyyyyy”

    I need new friends.

  22. What a beaut! I loved it.
    It took a long time to get 13d; sadly, we still have them. I take my own to the SM.
    I liked 10d, but 9a wins hands down, anything to do with dog gets my first pick. The pic at 21a had my mouth watering, yum yum.
    Thanks to setter, and appreciation to pommers for working through the Canarian lurgy.

  23. After a few days of failing to get round to the crossword we really enjoyed this one after a stressful afternoon with the football. A **/**** from us. Many thanks to Pommers and the Setter.

  24. Thanks to Mr Ron and to Pommers for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one, it was well crafted, with some good clues. Favourite was 21a, last in was 16a. Was 2*/3* for me.

  25. **/*** for me as some clues a tad too easy to make it an exciting 4* brain-taxing effort. Am certain tomorrow’s offering will take me down the necessary peg or two..or three. ( Where does that saying originate ?)
    FIRST visit to Ascot and longing to see Royalty at close quarters in open carriages and what happens ? TORRENTIAL downpour just as said coaches about to pass by, so that roofs were hastily closed and visibility was nil :(
    Loved 13a and 15d today. Clever !

  26. Unlike many others this was *** for me but **** for enjoyment. I loved this, my favourite is 9a but also liked 30a and 5d.

  27. Once again I fully concur with RD’s assessment, it was a pity that 7d was so clunky compared to the other smooth surfaces.

    Lots of clever cluing in evidence, favourite was 2d.

    Many thanks to today’s setter and to Pommers.

    1. Don’t look at the toughie. Beam used the same word twice for almost the same answer.

  28. Lovely puzzle, just a little trickier than the past couple of days. Favourite clue 13ac.

  29. Over too soon but plenty of smiles: 2*/4*. I was tempted by 21a as favourite, simply because I love the stuff. The stinkier the better, and I fill my boat with it whenever I cross the Channel! In the end, however, I decided to plump for 13a. Thanks to the setter, and to Pommers. I trust your lurgy will soon be a thing of the past.

  30. Good stuff. Like Miffypops, I thought it was going to be difficult but it all fell into place. Favourite was 9a. Thank you setter and Pommers. Regards to LA.

  31. Thanks to Pommers for his characteristically entertaining blog and everyone for commenting

    1. Thank you for your characteristically entertaining puzzle. One of the best for some time, and I think that most other commenters agree with that view.

    2. Great puzzle, Shamus, many thanks. I’m still wondering what happened to the little Irish references that I took as your trademark?

  32. Nice one Mysteron. Good combination of cerebration and fun. Do wonder whether 17a does in fact = “resource”. TVM beplagued or belurgied pommers (get well soon) for your unambiguous hints which are always a help with parsing even if not necessarily required for solving.

  33. Thank you setter. Great fun. Several favourites. 9d,17d, 13d and 22d. Thank you for the review Pommers and get well soon.

  34. Back home now and going to bed. Managed a snooze through the England v Wales footy but woke up in time to see the winner :yahoo:

    Cold much better now so thanks to those who wished a speedy recovery. Just hope it don’t go to the chest and give us a re-run of three years ago. That was a bit scary!

  35. Did this yesterday aft. Not too hard but quite enjoyable. Agree about 7d: Although the wordplay is very good and you can parse the answer easily enough from it, the actual surface doesn’t really make sense. 2*/3*

  36. A few to catch up, very enjoyable.
    Thanks Pommers for the hints, and to the setter….

Comments are closed.