DT 28298

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28298

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

It’s Thursday, it’s my turn to blog and it’s a RayT day which almost makes up for the fact it’s raining (yet again!).  I’m beginning to think that the rain in Spain falls mainly on the Vega Baja!

It’s pretty normal stuff from RayT including a couple of lurkers, a first letters clue and a few bits of innuendo but, at least for me. it didn’t quite reach the normal enjoyment level.  There are six anagrams to get you started so I don’t think we’ll have as many negative comments as usual.

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. 

Across

1a           Question trainee got wrong about arithmetic maybe (11)
INTERROGATE:  Arithmetic is one of the “3R’s” so start with an R and about it make an anagram (wrong) of TRAINEE GOT.

10a         Nothing in beak but rope (5)
NOOSE:  Insert O (nothing) into the real word for what is colloquially known as your beak.

11a         Second’s words managed to carry fighter (9)
SWORDSMAN:  A lurker and the fighter’s lurking (to carry) in the first three words.  Here’s a bit of Errol Flynn buckling his swash . . . 

12a         Some person’s laughter is offensive (9)
ONSLAUGHT:  Another lurker.  It’s hidden in (some) person’s laughter.  A bit odd to have two consecutive lurkers.

13a         Willow often seen in elementary receptacles initially (5)
OSIER:  First letters (initially) of the other words.

14a         On high inside rushed to get drunk (6)
SUPPED:  Here drunk is a past tense verb, not an adjective. You need to insert (inside) a two letter word for on high into a word meaning rushed or went fast.

16a         Yokels given fine, overlooking pounds and shillings (8)
PEASANTS:  Start with a word meaning fine or nice and remove the L (overlooking pounds). Then follow with S(hillings).  A bit of a chestnut methinks, along with similar clue constructs involving some game birds.

18a         Atmosphere turned, perhaps around date for last judgement (8)
DOOMSDAY: Start with a word for atmosphere or feeling and reverse it (turned). After that you’ll need a word meaning perhaps around D(ate).  

20a         Feeble outcome, caught out by sweetheart (6)
EFFETE:  Take a word for outcome or result and remove the C (Caught out) and follow with an E (swEet heart).

23a         Build up and knock down, they say (5)
RAISE:  A word meaning to build up sounds like (they say) a word meaning knock down, to the ground.

24a         One covers smell of rot on dead bats (9)
DEODORANT:  Anagram (bats) of ROT ON DEAD.

26a         Arise as priest’s last organised part of church (9)
TRANSPIRE:  Arise as in to happen rather than getting up. It’s a charade of T (priesT‘s last), a word meaning organised or managed and the pointy bit on the top of a church.

27a         Independence held back Ohio state (5)
IDAHO:  I(ndependence) followed by a word meaning held or owned reversed (back) and finally O(hio).  Can you have O for Ohio? I thought it was OH.

28a         Peels in a bra, accidentally showing bosom (11)
INSEPARABLE:  I know a lot of you have dirty minds like me but this isn’t what you think! It’s bosom as in “bosom buddies” and is nothing to do with a lady’s chest.  It’s also an anagram (accidentally) of PEELS IN A BRA.  You didn’t think I’d pass up an opportunity like this did you?

 Down

2d           Retreats as negative vote’s accepting sanction (5)
NOOKS:  Take a word for negative votes and insert (accepting) two letters for to sanction as in give permission.

3d           Cheer and cheer, concealing envy, oddly (7)
ELEVATE:  Start with a word for to cheer or make very happy and insert(concealing) the odd letters of EnVy.

4d           Leave government split by factions conclusively (6)
RESIGN:  Leave as in leave your job or indeed the government. It’s a word for government with an S (factionS conclusively) inserted (split by).

5d           Grand at first, cad embracing one’s more seedy (8)
GROTTIER:  Start with a G (Grand at first) and follow with a cad with the letter that looks like a one inserted (embracing)

6d           Tiresome editor promises to pay after time (7)
TEDIOUS:  Start with T(ime) and after it put the usual editor and then some promises to pay.

7d           Uncaring behind bars holding criminal on charge (13)
INCONSIDERATE:  Take a word for behind bars or in prison and insert the person who is in prison.  Follow that lot with a word for charge as in an hourly fee perhaps.

8d           Beam with nice well-disposed feeling (8)
AMBIENCE:  Anagram (well-disposed) of BEAM with NICE.

9d           I contort spine awkwardly for self-examination (13)
INTROSPECTION:  Anagram (awkwardly) of I CONTORT SPINE.

15d         Wasteful swine taking stick over nearly everything (8)
PRODIGAL:  Start with another word for a swine and insert (taking) a stick and follow with a word for everything without its last letter (nearly)

17d         Philander topless, somehow becoming extreme (8)
HARDLINE:  Remove the first letter from philander (topless) and make an anagram (somehow) of what’s left.

19d         Relative‘s favourite’s raised accordingly by name (7)
STEPSON:  Reverse the usual favourite’s, don’t forget the S, and follow with a word for accordingly or in this way and then N(ame).

21d         Fine and noble protecting independent American state (7)
FLORIDA:  F(ine) followed by a noble with I(ndependent) inserted (protecting) and finally A(merican).

22d         Mature old burgundy’s opening up in cellar (6)
BODEGA:  Start with a word for mature, as in getting on a bit, then O(ld) and a B (Burgundy’s opening) and reverse the lot (up in a down clue),

25d         Benefit of a fine screen for the audience (5)
AVAIL:  A (from the clue) followed by four letters that sound like (for the audience) a fine screen, across the face of a bride perhaps.

You’ve probably guessed my favourite is 28a but 12a and 8d are up there on the podium.


The Quick Crossword pun: justice+hurts=just desserts


Advertisements

79 Comments

  1. Graham
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Funny I made a completely different anagram for 28A “lesbian rape” I will probably get sent to the naughty corner for that. The puzzle was almost an R&W for me but did get held up in the S.E corner. Favourite goes to 18A, thanks to the setter & to Pommers for his review

    • Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      The naughty corner only operates for the weekend prize puzzles :smile:

    • Jose
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

      I couldn’t think of a good alternative anagram because BRAIN ASLEEP.

      • Graham
        Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        Aesop Berlian who is a professional footballer who plays for Madura United whoever they are!

        • Jose
          Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

          Aesop Berlain’s got a redundant O in it!

          • Graham
            Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

            Oops! 😟

      • Miffypops
        Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        Or BRIAN ASLEEP. He will be after this

      • Bluebird
        Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

        ENABLE PAIRS?
        ERASABLE NIP?
        LABIA PREENS?

        Well, the photo really has no excuse, does it?
        Pommers I’m not sure about, but he did help me with some of this puzzle, so he’s forgiven.

  2. JonP
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    No problems with this one today except of my own making – I spelt 28ac incorrectly which made 22d puzzling until I realised what I’d done.

    Thanks to pommers and RayT **/****

    p.s. I think you may have made the same mistake as I did as per above with regards to the hidden answer for 28ac

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

      If I did someone else appears to have corrected it.

    • oddjob
      Posted December 16, 2016 at 5:11 am | Permalink

      Inseperable eh, schoolboy error.oj.

  3. Senf
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    **/*** for me, completed comfortably before lights out last night. Although, I did have to resort to some electronic assistance. I wasn’t sure if it was a Ray T as there was no mention of Her Majesty, or am I getting my setters mixed up?

    Long favourite, the non-anagram 7d. Short favourite, 22d,

    Thanks to Ray T and pommers.

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

      You got the right setter but he does occasionally leave Her Majesty back at the palace.

      • Senf
        Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

        Thanks pommers, you have jogged my memory on that being mentioned before (such as MP(?) referring to the Court Circular).

    • Miffypops
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      Her Maj makes several direct appearances in today’s grid at 1ac, 13ac, 5d and 7d. She is looking backwards at 23ac, 26ac and 7d. Her smile is perfectly described at 8d and can be seen in the picture for my hint at 4ac in Monday’s puzzle 28295.

  4. Toadson
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    No more difficult than yesterday, go for it Brian …

  5. Kath
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    It seems to have started snowing . . . :smile:
    I’d go along with 2* difficulty and the 3* for enjoyment.
    I agree about the 27a US state and I’m not sure that 28a really works, or am I just being dim?
    I missed the first lurker, 11a, for ages and spotted the next one, 12a, immediately – slaughter. :roll:
    I liked 1 and 24a and 7d. My favourite was 9d.
    With thanks to Ray T and to pommers.

  6. Jane
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Have to agree with Pommers in that I didn’t think this was Mr. T on his best form, but that just makes him human!
    Made the same stupid spelling mistake as others with 28a – sorry, RD – which left me with no sensible possibilities for 22d. That will teach me to be so careless.

    My top two were 1a&9d.
    Devotions to Mr. T and many thanks to Pommers (also to BD for the snowfall!).

  7. Young Salopian
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    I am not going to differ from the prevailing view that this was a comfortable and fairly enjoyable diversion on a grey Thursday morning. 24 across just about my favourite and 2*/3* overall.

    Thanks to both Ray T and pommers for his review. I went to put up our outside lights and none of them worked. Do I buy some new sets or prop up the Bar Humbug?

  8. jean-luc cheval
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    Took a while to spot the lurker in 12a. Thought that the answer was going to start with His until I managed to parse 7d.
    Favourite 9d.
    Thanks to RayT and to pommers.

  9. Jaguar Pete
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    It’s probably me, but after Christmas celebrations on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, I had a lot of difficulty in the SW corner. But once I’d crossed the steeple in 26A it all fell into place.

    As ever some electronic assistance but less than usual. Is Mr T getting soft the nearer to Christmas it gets?

    Thanks to Ray T, BD for the snowfall and Pommers for the review

  10. Miffypops
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    Who’s ashes are we scattering today BD. I found that quite tough but I was being asked questions about Christmas cards. As usual I loved it all but i did need to consult pommer’s blog for the reasoning behind 16ac, 20ac, 27ac, 4d, and 17d. I am glad I didn’t have to review this puzzle. As usual Saint Sharon is quibbling about sending immediate neighbour’s cards through the post. I get niggled every year for this but she will not deliver them herself.

  11. spindrift
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

    A real treat for my 60th birthday! A Ray T puzzle to be solved in my local while supping a few pints of ale accompanied by a ploughman’s. Life doesn’t get much better.

    • crypticsue
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      Many happy returns :rose:

    • Graham
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

      Happy birthday hope it’s a good one

    • Miffypops
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

      Happy Birthday.

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      Happy Birthday from me too. The ale and ploughman’s sounds just the job :smile:

    • shropshirelad
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

      Many Happy Returns of the day to you – from me as well :)

    • mcmillibar
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

      Many happy returns! Cheers. Agreed.

    • jean-luc cheval
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      Joyeux Anniversaire.

    • Jane
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

      Many congrats. Spindrift. Enjoy the rest of your big day!

    • Posted December 15, 2016 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

      Happy 6th birthdecade, Spindrift. :)

    • florence
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

      Happy Birthday Spindrift.

  12. pommers
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    Sorry I’ve not been around today but I was taking pommette to the dentist – lucky girl :lol: Back now though.

  13. shropshirelad
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

    Yep, it’s an alternate Thursday so it must be a Ray T production. I agree with pommers’ assessment that it was a tad lacklustre but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I liked 7d but my favourite has to be 28a – he’s obviously been spending too much time with Mr Manley in BRAzil :) I think Silvanus may have something to say about the SE corner with the use of ‘state’.

    Thanks to Mr T for the puzzle and to pommers for the review.

  14. Organum
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    The most enjoyable solve since the last Ray T. 17d and 18a held me up, followed by “doh” – typical of my reactions to clues on alternate Thursdays.

  15. Beaver
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    One of those puzzles which on first scan looked to be difficult but fell into place at a steady rate once underway, needed careful attention on the parsing front !
    Going to go for a 2.5*/4*

  16. mcmillibar
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    I enjoyed muchly this one even though I found it quite hard going. Just like JonP, (28a) I can’t spell (something of a disadvantage in this game) and, like Kath, my fav was 24a. Tried really hard to make ‘Transcept’ fit for 26a. Not only was it plain wrong but I had mis-spelled that too! Urgh! Did enjoy all this though so thanks Mr RayT and, well, everyone.

  17. Brian
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    Well with electronic help and considerable guesswork I managed to finish this understanding approx 1/3 of the clues without the hints.
    I suppose I should take satisfaction from completing it but somehow I don’t.
    I suppose I will never enjoy Ray Ts style of crosswords and must just accept it, life’s too short to worry about trivia.
    Thx for the hints

    • Toadson
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Given that you hate Ray T puzzles Brian, respect must be due to you for completing it. Fair play.

  18. Dr M
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    What is happening with crosswordland? I actually found this Ray T easier than jays puzzle yesterday. I actually enjoyed it rather than plodding grumpily to the finish line. Like jonp my spelling (or rather misspelling) of 28a slowed down the solving of 22d until I realised my mistake. Thanks to Ray t and pommers.

  19. Merusa
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    As usual, I sweated bullets with this, though I did manage to finish with copious help from my electronic gizmo.
    I agree with pommers re 27a.
    My fave was 18a, with 1a running close behind.
    Thanks to RayT, and to pommers for the hints and unravelling of some answers.

  20. MalcolmR
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    All fairly straightforward for me today, except for 16a which I couldn’t parse without pommers’ assistance, and 22d which I didn’t know. Still, I think I’ve only spent about 36 hours in Spain in my whole life and not even the BRB calls it a cellar.

    Thanks to pommers and Ray T.

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      Around here the word is used more for a shop selling wine rather than a wine cellar.

  21. Posted December 15, 2016 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    RayT answered my prayers for a gentle one which I could fit in before breakfast. Much enjoyed. Thanks to him and pommers.

  22. Jarman Island
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Extraordinary! All us learned cruciverbalists and most of us can’t spell 28a! And you can count me in too!

  23. silvanus
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    I was surprised to see that certain regulars found this easier than yesterday, I’m not one of them! It’s certainly not the first time that RayT’s answers had to be coaxed out slowly, but the effort was well worth it. I thought this was tremendously entertaining, and couldn’t really understand why it was considered lacklustre by several of our most eminent bloggers. Was it the absence of Her Maj that disappointed, I wonder? Certainly, there was plenty of innuendo and the usual delicious lurkers to compensate, surely.

    I really liked the symmetry of all four words around the edge beginning with the same two letters, I’m not sure that anyone else has praised the setter for that, so I shall. My four ticked clues were 14a, 18a, 24a and, best of all, 28a. SL is right that I didn’t particularly care for the repetition of “state” in the SE corner, but as both were cluing different, albeit linked definitions, and neither was an indicator, I was less concerned than normally!

    Many thanks to Mr. Terrell and to Pommers. A friend of mine is flying to Chicago tomorrow, where the temperature on Sunday is predicted to fall to minus 19 degrees Celsius. Grey, damp London at plus 11/12 seems almost tropical by comparison.

  24. Una
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    25d completely eluded me and I found it pretty difficult. I don’t seem to be able to get on this setter’s wavelength.
    Thanks to all concerned.

  25. Scousegit
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

    I found this a hard but satisfying solve. 24a was a cracking clue, not sure I’ve come across ‘bats’ as an anagram indicator before but it’s so obvious that the doh moment was inevitable. I needed Pommers help with 3d, couldn’t understand why the letters cheerev wouldn’t make a word. Is anyone else finding that doing the down clues on a first pass is working for them? Thanks to Pommers and Ray T, oh and BD too for the seasonal snow.

  26. 2Kiwis
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Although her majesty was absent we did have the setter’s alias from Toughie land in 8a as a signature. Agree that 28a has to be the favourite because of the chuckle it gave us. Word count checked and all in order.
    Thanks RayT and pommers.

  27. stanXYZ
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Doesn’t EIIR go orf to Sandringham at this time of year? Or is it Balmoral?

  28. Vancouverbc
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    Well I enjoyed this puzzle. Nice lurkers and sufficient anagrams to get the ball rolling. Favourite clues 12a and 22d. Thanks to Ray T and Pommers for the review. Very cold again today but worse to come tomorrow I’m informed.

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      We don’t get much cold here (15C today) but it looks like we’re going to get 90mm of rain on Saturday – our garage roof will leak :sad:

  29. Jaylegs
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    I must confess to finding this hard going ***/*** 😨 22d gave me a problem because I was another who misspelt 28a 😳 Liked 18a and 21d 😊 Thanks to Pommers and to Ray T. Just another tricky Thursday 🎼

  30. RayT
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    Evening all. Setter here with thanks to pommers for the review and to all for your comments.

    RayT

    • Miffypops
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      Thanks very much RayT

    • florence
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for dropping in RayT. Great puzzle today.

    • Mcmillibar
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

      I really enjoyed tussling with your puzzle today. Thank you Ray and for calling in.

    • Jane
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for popping in, Mr. T.

    • oddjob
      Posted December 16, 2016 at 4:54 am | Permalink

      Thank you, you are the best. oj.(original).

  31. Jon_S
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    I found this a little difficult in places, and struggled with 18ac and 22d at the end. If I’d spelt 28ac correctly, of course, I might have found the latter at least a little easier.

  32. Gwizz
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    28a momentarily caused problems… ‘a’ not ‘e’ – repeat one hundred times… d’oh. Anyway after that plus a slow start everything fell into place satisfactorily. I liked 8d bestest, so that’s my favourite. 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to RayT, and to Pommers for his review.

  33. Salty Dog
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

    28a held me up a bit, I must admit (and that photograph gave me palpitations). Overall, though, 2*/3* and I can’t choose between 16a and 5d as favourite. Thanks to Ray T and the incorrigible Pommers.

    • pommers
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

      When I was about nine years old I had a school report which used the word incorrigible. I thought it was a compliment until my dad gave me a clip round the earhole :lol: I haven’t changed over the years.

  34. BusyLizzie
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    Found parts easy and parts tricky, but overall a satisfying challenge today. Agree 27a should by OH for Ohio, and it would have been shame on me if I couldn’t get 21d…and Merusa likewise. Bunged in 1a (correctly) before I could reallly see how it worked. Needed help for the willow in13a, and Pommers hints for quite a few.

    • Merusa
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Yes, 21d was one of my first answers!

  35. florence
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    Finished this earlier but forgot to sign in. Why are people talking about snow ? Weather’s fine here in Buckinghamshire. On to the puzzle. The more I tackle a RayT the more I enjoy. 1a was straight in as was the whole right hand side. I stalled slightly with the left as I had two options for 14a and had to re-read the clue to work out the right answer. I’ve ringed several clues which must mean I have several favourites. I bunged in 22d but needed to check the review to find out why it was what it was. The characters in 28a need to go to Rigby and Peller imho. Many thanks Pommers and RayT.

    • Bluebird
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

      Re 28a…..
      Florence, I think the point of buying your breasts rather than growing your own is so you don’t need very expensive corsetry! Perhaps it’s a saving in the long run?

      I spend my spare money on 👠👠👠……….

    • Jane
      Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

      Hi Florence,
      You should be getting special BD snowflakes drifting across your screen when you access the site!

  36. Sam
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    I really will do something else on Thursdays in future, because my English isn’t the same as Ray T’s. “Elevate up mate, it may never happen.” “Mine’s a pint: elevates!”

  37. Angellov
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

    That was reasonably straightforward but I did have a fair share of bung-ins (e.g. 16a and 20a) which only dawned on me after completion of the puzzle – d’oh. Missed the repetition of ‘in’ around the perimeter. ***/**. Thank you RayT and Pommers.

  38. Sam
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 10:52 pm | Permalink

    26a is an example of: well it must be transpire; now I’ll set about working out why. 17d is a (very rare, in Ray T’s case) clue that you can work with. I prefer the latter. O and O is no more an indicator of Ohio than is E for vescence.

  39. hoofityoudonkey
    Posted December 15, 2016 at 11:01 pm | Permalink

    Just needed a couple of hints to cross the line.
    I have come to like RayT’s puzzles, but I didn’t think that this was one of RayT’s finest, but after a hard day at work I have an excuse.
    Favourite was the photo for 28a!!
    Thanks Ray and Pommers

  40. Tstrummer
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 1:09 am | Permalink

    I agree this was Ray in benevolent mood. And, as such, I enjoyed it more than usual. I’m going for 22d as my champagne moment: a very old and dear friend lived in Logrono, capital of Rioja, in a fourth-floor flat in the cathedral square. There was a bodega on the ground floor and he used to lower a plastic flagon on a rope down to ground level, where they would fill it straight from the barrel and he would then haul it aloft, settling the bill in due course. How things have changed. Thanks to Pommers and Mr T.
    PS: many of you seem to have chilly conditions but spare a thought for my youngest son: it’s -29C at night in Banff, rising to a heady -19C in the daytime.

  41. Killer Watts
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    Nice Ray T, happy to complete, though admittedly took me twice my usual time.

    ***/***.
    Couldn’t guess the Quickie Pun, as I had ‘harms’ in 5 a !

  42. Killer Watts
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    Forgot to leave thanks to setter and to Pommers !

  43. Ora Meringue
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    Didn’t have time to try this yesterday…..but found it far too difficult for me today.
    I just do not get on with this setter, although I have to say that when I see the hints, the answers are all there.
    I will persevere, but suspect that it may take me a very long time to get anywhere near solving his puzzles without help or hints.

    Thanks to Pommers and to the setter.

  44. Jose
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    This was average for a Ray T and about on a par with yesterday’s, so 3*/4*.

  45. Heno
    Posted December 16, 2016 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Ray T and to Pommers for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one, but found it quite gentle for a Ray T. Bit late commenting as I was out for Xmas lunch & beer yesterday. Last in was 14a. I had two joint favourites (sorry Kath) couldn’t split 24&28a, they both made me laugh. Was 2*/3* for me.