DT 28189 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28189

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28189

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

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

What are we going to talk about this week? The fresh snow, brought by the cold snap last weekend, that now blankets the hills to the east of us making them look like real moutains. Possibly the crispy white frosts of the last few days that have greeted us in the mornings, or perhaps the young seal that we came across on the beach that lolloped off across the sand back into the surf as we came along. No, we will just concentrate on the matter in hand and give our full attention to today’s delightful Jay puzzle.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Food! Change course, grabbing food, for example on the way back (10)
VEGEBURGER: A four letter word meaning to change course or deviate contains an informal word for food and the abbreviation meaning ‘for example’, both or which are reversed.

6a     Language from jumper getting undressed (4)
ERSE : This jumper is not a flea or a kangaroo but a knitted garment. It loses its first and last letters.

10a      Bound to miss the end of autumn shoot (5)
SPRIG : A word meaning bound or leap in the air has the last letter of autumn removed from it.

11a     Uncontrollable urge isn’t a mark of identification (9)
SIGNATURE : An anagram (uncontrollable) of URGE ISN’T A.

12a     High spirits of auntie, perhaps going topless (7)
ELATION : A word for what an auntie or even an uncle or cousin can be to you, loses its first letter.

13a     Experiencing a pain on the right side of chest (7)
TASTING : A from the clue and the pain that could be caused by a bee, come after the last letter (right side) of chest.

14a     Exciting scenes from people who abseil? (12)
CLIFFHANGERS : Double definition. The second describes what these people are doing and where.

18a     Restore a Blairite? The changes! (12)
REHABILITATE : An anagram (changes) of A BLAIRITE THE.

21a     Throw a sickie — in bed, on holiday (4,3)
BUNK OFF : This bed is usually found as part of a set and then a word meaning on holiday or not at work.

23a     Managed returns merit recount (7)
NARRATE : A word meaning managed is reversed and then a synonym for merit as a verb.

24a     Reuters arranged to cover a king’s finance officer (9)
TREASURER : An anagram (arranged) of REUTERS includes A from the clue and the one letter regal cipher.

25a     Join fool in backing European Union (5)
UNITE : A synonym for a fool is inside the reversal of the initials for European Union.

26a     Special Forces must cross east of enemy states (4)
SAYS : The last letter (east) of enemy is inside the abbreviation for the Special Air Service.

27a     Fur needed if friend catches cold (10)
CHINCHILLA : A word meaning a cold is inside the cockney rhyming slang for a friend.


1d     Ship‘s container (6)
VESSEL : Double definition.

2d     Manager managing to absorb the language (6)
GERMAN : The answer is hiding in the first two words of the clue.

3d     Wimp massaged legs, rubbing oils with no end of caution (3,5,6)
BIG GIRLS BLOUSE : An anagram (massaged) of LEGS RUBBInG OILS after the last letter of caution has been removed.

4d     Bitter, but relaxed about two points (9)
RESENTFUL : A word meaning relaxed or calm contains two compass points. (East and North on this occasion).

5d     Crew needing altitude without hydrogen (5)
EIGHT : Find a word meaning altitude and remove the chemical symbol for hydrogen.

7d     Itineraries must incorporate popular acts (8)
ROUTINES : Itineraries or paths to travel contain the two letter word meaning popular.

8d     Green is bad — source of emotional charge! (8)
ENERGISE : An anagram (bad) of GREEN IS and the first letter of emotional.

9d     In transit, but approving hotel during depression (7,7)
PASSING THROUGH : A word meaning approving as an exam marker might be doing, then the abbreviation for hotel is inside a depression that could be used for feeding pigs.

15d     Nasty accident — it’s touch-and-go (3-3-3)
HIT-AND-RUN : Words meaning ‘touch’ as in asking for a donation or loan and ‘go’ or escape to get this type of vehicle accident.

16d     Attempts to box contrary to expectation will get testimonials (8)
TRIBUTES : A word for attempts surrounds (boxes) a conjunction meaning contrary to expectation.

17d     Risky to circumvent the Queen’s court (8)
CHANCERY : A synonym for risky contains the two letter abbreviation for Her Majesty.

19d     Like some tyres artist set up (6)
RADIAL : An artist belonging to the Royal Academy and a word meaning set, as a table may be, is inverted.

20d     Groups of fifty despatched by senior officer (6)
GENERA : We are looking for groups of plants or animals here. A senior military officer loses the last letter which is the Roman numeral for fifty.

22d     Estuary English ultimately suppressed by fail rate, oddly (5)
FIRTH : Start with the first letter of fail and take every second letter then add the final letter of English.

Once again we are going to choose 1a as our favourite.

Quickie pun      proper    +     teat    +    axe    =    property tax

67 comments on “DT 28189

  1. I keep thinking that it is Wednesday but it must be Thursday because this puzzle has all the hall marks of a RayT puzzle even though 2Kiwis think that it is a Jay crossword

    1. I see you are still blaming the setter when you have difficulty – perhaps you should look closer to home. Every Wednesday puzzle is set by Jay, Ray T only appears on Thursday. For you information I completed this comfortably inside 1 star time.

      1. I’m not blaming the setter at all. I enjoy Jay puzzles. I’m comparing this particular one with the style of RayT. Actually I finished quite quickly

  2. Happy bunny today. Much happier than yesterday. 3d made me laugh. Missed the lurker in 2d until I got the right sort of fast food for 1a. Remembered the ‘mate’ from a few days ago so 27a was straight in. Thank you 2ks and setter. Another 150 miles to go before I reach Northumberland. Not sure what to do next. Maybe search for some holiday reading.

  3. 3*/4*. I agree exactly with the 2Ks’ assessment of this delightful puzzle. The NW took me as long as the other three corners put together largely due to me trying to fit “vegetables” in as the answer to 1a. However 20d was my last one in.

    Does anyone know the origin of the bizarre expression which is the answer to 3d? This was my favourite today.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

    1. Definitely Hylda Baker about her tall silent friend Cynthia, the follow-up was “She knows yer know”. HB lived just off Tottenham Court Road and as I worked nearby we often used to see her out and about in a rather over-powering fur coat.

  4. 1ac threw me for ages. I love food in puzzles but I was not sure about this stuff. Nice solve to start the day. The 3d anagram took some unravelling too. Thanks to jay and thanks to The Two Kiwis whose blog I shall read later as I am off to celebrate my Father-In-Laws eightieth birthday.

  5. Lovely Jay crossword – the 2Ks rating matches mine. Thanks to him and them.

    If you haven’t seen and laughed out loudly at today’s Matt cartoon on the front page of the paper, I recommend you do so without delay. :D

    1. Matt’s cartoons are always available on-line without buying the paper …

      Something The Daily Telegraph doesn’t charge for … or as pedants would say “Something for which the Daily Telegraph does not charge”.

      1. Hope you are “getting there” otherwise the huge guffaw could have easily been painful.. In fact our early edition had a different Matt than the electronic one. The latter was much better than ours which was about the size of Tom Daley’s trunks.
        Don’the know if you saw the back of the sports page reporting Gary Johnson saying that Donald Trump is watching the Pole Vault in Rio, particularly the Mexican Vaulters.

        1. I saw the Tom Daley trunks Matt and loved it.
          Loved the Trumpism, I think everyone knows my sentiments in that direction. Wotta jerk.
          Re pacemaker, I’m doing fine, but the back is still a problem. A back brace just arrived today and is helping, so the tailbone is left, and a special cushion is arriving tomorrow.
          Tell Biggles that Sadie says cheers!

          1. Thank you Bigsey loves meeting all Labs -I’m sure Sadie & he would get on like a house on fire. I don’t think your temperature & humidity would be to his liking how does Sadie manage?

    2. Matt’s cartoons hit the nail on the head of contemporary life more often than one would think possible.
      Am now getting used to the DT quarterly voucher arrangement – although some newsagents don’t take them. The people at my local WH Smith’s have at last stopped giving me the usual batch of useless coupons that I always used to get when I paid my daily £1.40 in cash.

  6. All very straightforward for me except 3d which is a phrase I had never heard of before. Last in after some unpicking.

    2*/3* I would say.

  7. Very enjoyable, much better than yesterday, 2*/4* for me, must have been on the right wavelength today!

    Liked 14a,12a and 20d

    Thanks 2Ks and setter

  8. I found this to be a lovely puzzle. I solved the anagrams fairly swiftly which gave me a good start. No particular favourites. Thanks to Jay and to 2Kiwis for the review.

  9. Good fun, thank you Mysteron. Thanks also 2 Ks for sorting 1a/1d for me where I had a different kind of fast food (unparsed!) and basket so 2d was problematic. I’m with George above in never having heard of 3d. Joint favs 27a and 9d. ***/**** for me too.

  10. A fairly easy solve , but still quite enjoyable. Last one for me was 20d, never heard of the word before, but easy enough to work out from the clue. 1a and 3d were my favourites. 2*/3.5* Many thanks to Jay and to 2Kiwis.

  11. Really enjoyable crossword today, with 3d as my favourite, reminded me of the things I used to hear (and say) in the school playground.

    Thanks to the setter and the 2k’s, keep up the weather bulletins as Mrs Gambler is visiting NZ in a months time to visit her father who emigrated there two years ago at the age of 83.

  12. Was it just me or did anyone else find today’s puzzle a bit weird? Some very complex clues and odd inflexions such as the exclamation mark in 1a.
    All in all quite tough but an enjoyable solve.
    Thx to all

  13. Enjoyed this one very much. Like others the NW corner took me a while. Eventually got 1a and couldn’t believe how long it took me to see 2d!

  14. 3D ended up being my favourite of all, but it was nearly my last in due to not seeing 1a for ages. Like most people, I got the first 3-4 letters, but I tend to spell the answer in a more slang-y way.

    27a – isn’t that the second time this week we’ve had “Me old ***** ” as a term for friend?

    Overall, I liked it …….**/*** and thanks to the 2Ks for the explanation of 20d. Duh!

  15. A very elegant Jay puzzle for us today. There were a few head-scratching moments but overall the answers fell nicely into place at a reasonable rate. 3 down was my favourite of several fine clues, and overall this was 2.5*/4* for me.

    Many thanks to all species of birds involved.

  16. Can’t believe this was straightforward for some ,agree with the 2K’S ***/****,Really testing puzzle for me and I thought it had all the hallmarks of a Ray T, smirked at 3d-not heard this for ages, reminds me of St Trinians for some reason.
    Glad that everyone seemed to appreciate the solve-Test match tomorrow !

  17. Lovely stuff from Jay. Darted about all over the grid to get a foothold but than worked steadily through the rest.
    Only real hold up came from being obsessed with ‘beefburger’ and ‘bottle’ for the 1a/1d slots. I wonder why an exclamation mark is included in 1a? I would have thought a question mark was more appropriate!

    Many contenders for medals – I’ll go for a top three of 14&21a plus 9d.
    Thank you very much indeed, Jay and thanks also to 2Ks for another brilliant blog. Do you get grey or common seals in your part of the world?

    1. Seals. Not our area of expertise but we understand the grey seals and common or harbour seals are both Northern Hemisphere species. The ones we have here are New Zealand fur seals. In pre-European times they were very common around the coasts of the southern part of NZ. Some of the earliest Europeans here, more than 200 years ago, were sealers who ‘harvested’ them almost to the point of extinction. Only now after decades of protection and conservation are we starting to see significant breeding colonies being re-established on mainland coasts. They are just unbelievably cute and appealing to watch as we did on the Kaikoura coast a few months ago.

  18. Getting 3d was a good start.I didn’t think it was particularly easy though.
    1a was the last hold-out.
    21a was my favourite .
    Thanks to the Kiwis( although I didn’t like being reminded that snow and frost exist, not yet ) and to Jay.

  19. Sorted before lunch and tha says it all for me. Found this very enjoyable apart from my usual fixation, thought 21a might be anagram but then sense kicked in.
    Favourite clue 27a
    Agree with the rating many thanks to the 2Kiwis and Jay.

  20. Nice reasonably straight forward solve 😊 **/**** although on first pass my maritime conveyer was a Packet 😕 Clue of the month was 20d, and I also liked 14a 😜 Thanks to Jay and the 2xKs for their usual excellent blog. I must say that one of the really nice things about the blog is it’s International flavour 😎

  21. Nice puzzle with no obscurities for me. Last in was 14a as I had 15d starting “cut” – it sort-of made sense at first.
    Good, fair puzzle enjoyable & doable without help.
    Thanks to setter & 2Ks. Presumably the view was better than watching the 7’s from Rio. Still no doubt today you will put that right.

  22. Originally I thought I might not warm to this one, having spotted “managed”, “manager” and “managing” together in the same puzzle, but any such reservations were completely dispelled. This was an undiluted joy from start to finish. If Last Thursday’s backpager was one of the best of 2016 in my book, well this one from Jay surpassed it in my opinion.

    I have ticked so many excellent clues (over one third of the total) that it’s difficult to single out a particular favourite, although 3d just edges it. I was relieved that “auntie” was used in 12a rather than “granny”!

    I do hope that those who felt yesterday’s six anagrams were excessive will feel more comfortable with today’s five ;-)

    Brilliant stuff Mr. Mutch, many thanks indeed to you and the 2Kiwis.

  23. Not too taxing today, but a good mix of clues which made for a pleasing solve.

    No particular favourites, they were all good in their own way. **/***+

    Thanks to all.

  24. Truly enjoyable, though there were two phrases I had never heard of. I solved 21a ‘cos there was nothing else it could be, but 3d completely bamboozled me, never, ever heard of that. I would never have got that in a million years. Really strange.
    Apart from the two obscurities, I loved it with many smile clues, but fave has to be 27a.
    Thanks to Jay and the wintering 2Kiwis.

  25. Agree with the 2Ks rating – great review as usual. Some quite tricky clues eg 6a until the penny dropped. Loved 3D and 14A. 27a just jumped out of the page for me and made me smile. Thanks to the setter for an interesting and enjoyable puzzle.

  26. I thought **/*** today. Always like Jay’s. 20 down last one in. Should have got it sooner but didn’t twig the getting rid of the l bit and was looking to put one in. Thanks all.

  27. Good evening evrybody.

    A fine puzzle today and pretty well perfect for the back page. 2d was better hidden from me than perhaps it should have been! 10a was very good. Last in was 19d.


  28. 6a ??? Defeated by two missing letters and I still don’t understand either the answer or the clue given here because I can’t think of a wooly jumper with erse in the middle and j have no idea what erse means .

  29. Rather enjoyed. Last in 2d as lurker remained so for ages. Favourite 12a for the image in my mind of my auntie topless!

  30. Found this one from Jay tough as usual, but with very clever clues that did not seem so tough once I read 2KiWis splendid hints. 3D definitely a favorite, and not heard that expression for years, quite a trip down memory lane. 11a was also a great clue. Couldn’t figure out 1a at all. But these puzzles wouldn’t be much fun if they were easy anyway.

  31. We’re in the reasonably straightforward camp, but we didn’t feel it sparkled as much as other contributors do, so 2*/2* here.

    Difficult to pick out favourite clues, but we’ve selected 26a and 22d.

    Thanks to the 2Ks and Jay.

    Off to see BFG evening, so may have to pass on the Toughie today.

  32. Good morning everyone. By the feel of it, when the sun appears over the horizon we will find another crispy white frost all around us. As long as it is followed once again by a brilliantly fine day we will be happy. Need something to cheer the country after what is seen as a national disaster of the 7’s in Rio.
    Pleasing to see that most people agree with us about the quality of today’s Jay puzzle. Cheers.

  33. It took a while for me to get going then it all slipped down a treat until the NW corner where I choked a bit.

    12a caused a smile. I am one (in fact, I got to see my nephew today) but my spirits were not particularly high – nor, of course, was my behaviour in any way improper.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  34. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much. 27a made me laugh. Favourites were 1a&3d. Last in was 20d. Was 2*/3* for me.

  35. A good puzzle, but trickier than we’re used to on a Wednesday. 6ac and 20d in particular gave me more than pause for thought. Typing the answer to 18ac into the wrong bit of the grid probably didn’t help either…

  36. A lovely puzzle from Jay! Took me a.while to get going but once I did everything seemed to slot together smoothly. 3d, 20d and 9d; all really good: I’ll go with 9d as favourite. 3/4* overall.
    Thanks to Jay, and the two K’s.

  37. The expression in 3d has always made me laugh.
    The first part of 1a took a while and 1d was last in.
    Favourite for me was 17d. Very smooth.
    Thanks to Jay and to 2kiwis for the review.

  38. Not particularly difficult but good fun while it lasted. I thought that Jay’s last few puzzles were a bit lacklustre – but this was more the Jay of old. Good clue constructs and smooth surfaces with only one clue letting the side down. It’s not the clue I’m going to have a moan about – it’s the definition. Surely you can’t have the definition / answer for 1a as ‘food’?? Before any of you go off in a huff with me – I’m only joking. Mrs SL & I always try to have at least one vegetarian meal a week – just because we love it.

    Thanks to Jay for an enjoyable puzzle and to the 2K’s for their review. Sorry to see Sonny Bill injured at the Olympics, hope he’ll recover soon.

  39. I was not really on the case today, too busy getting ready for a holiday in North Devon.
    Enjoyable though but I found it hard to get a foothold.
    Fav was 21a, thanks to the 2xK’s for the hints and Jay for the usual excellence.

  40. Lovely stuff from my favourite setter. It would have been 1* time had I not snatched at it on 1a and put beef burger, which had me scratching my head over 1 & 2d. The error of my ways took me into 2* time, but 4* for the fun factor. I saw3d straight away and it remained my favourite for the duration of the solve. Ta to the Ks, up to their oxters in frost as we anticipate a heatwave – it must be true, it was in the Daily Mail – and, as ever, to Jay

  41. I completed this without internet access, and therefore without resort to this facility yesterday, whilst on the road. Gave me great satisfaction therefore and 14a and 3d made me smile. 20d was a new word for me.

  42. This was a great crossword with very well written/constructed clues – technically, almost flawless. But for me it was not at all taxing, so for difficulty I can only give it 1.5*. But it was very enjoyable to solve (fun, rather than challenging) and because of the excellent cluing I’ll give it 3.5* for enjoyment – a very good one indeed!

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