DT 28447 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28447

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28447

Hints and tips by ShropshireLad

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

Good Morning from a windy and overcast Central Shropshire. As you are no doubt aware, our regular Wednesday Kiwi bloggers are on their holidays for the next three weeks, exploring their neighbouring country of Australia. So you are left with me to try and help you untangle the wordplay from our Wednesday Wizard – Jay.

This is my first go at reviewing a Jay back pager and I think he has given me a somewhat gentle start by having several long anagrams and ‘Lego©’ clues to give plenty of checkers. Personally, I didn’t find it too heavy going, but that did not detract from the enjoyment that it gave me.

As usual, the definitions are underlined and my hints are there to help you further if required. If all else fails – the answer can be revealed by clicking on the grey ‘Click Here!’ button

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Paper money at last sent using this medium? (10)
TELEGRAPHY: Start with the name of a broadsheet (paper) that we all know well and add the final (at last) letter of ‘money’ from the clue. I believe that this is a ‘semi all in one’ clue but I’m happy to be told otherwise.

6a    Spirit bar winos regularly ignored (4)
BRIO: Remove alternate letters (regularly ignored) from ‘bar winos’ to get a different type of spirit suggested by the clue.

10a    Shopping centre drama mostly with extreme characters (5)
PLAZA: Take a 4 letter synonym for a drama acted out on the stage and remove the last letter (mostly). Then add the outer (extreme) letters of the alphabet (characters). I’m a tad unsure of the wordplay here as there doesn’t seem to be an insertion indicator for the ‘extreme characters’ – only a juxtaposition of ‘with’. That’s OK, but by doing it that way there is no indication to say that the last ‘character’ should appear before the first – if that makes sense.

11a    Busker perhaps replaced gratuities left by English (9)
GUITARIST: An anagram (replaced) of GRATUITIES minus (left) the abbreviation of ‘English’. Apologies in advance to my dear friend Miffypops for the pictorial hint.

12a    Deputise, having status reduced (5,2)
STAND IN: Start with an 8 letter synonym for ‘status’ and remove the last letter (reduced) then split what is left as 5,2.

13a    Story about court one is touching (7)
TACTILE: You need a 4 letter synonym for ‘story’ which contains (about) the standard abbreviation for ‘court’ and ‘one’ seen as a Roman numeral.

14a    Easy progress, but suffering on grasslands (5,7)
PLAIN SAILING: A synonym of ‘grasslands’ is followed by (on) another synonym for ‘suffering’.

18a    Teasing drunk about responsibilities (12)
UNDERTAKINGS: An anagram (about) of TEASING DRUNK.

21a    Craft needing brass with age (7)
GALLEON: The ‘brass’ here has nothing to do with metal or money. It is a synonym for ‘cheek’ followed by (with) a synonym for ‘age’ (a period of time).

23a    Copper embraced by slightly drunk element (7)
MERCURY: Start with the standard abbreviation for ‘copper’ and placed it inside (embraced by) a description of the state you might appear to be in when ‘slightly drunk’.

24a    Optical device protecting first home for earwigs (7,2)
LISTENS IN: Nothing to do with insects here. Take an optical device used in spectacles, containing (protecting) how first would appear as a numerical abbreviation and then add the standard synonym for ‘home’.

25a    Use professional parking to drop off (5)
EXERT: Start with a 6 letter synonym for ‘professional’ and remove (drop off) the abbreviation for ‘parking’.

26a    Clean what’s left by cutter, say (4)
WASH: I would say that this is a double definition, the latter that is created by a vessel (cutter, say) travelling through the water.

27a    Lucky escape of plane by dead-end street (5,5)
CLOSE SHAVE: Take a synonym for ‘dead –end street) and follow it with (by) a synonym of ‘plane’ – the plane here being used by a carpenter. In view of the death of Peter Sallis I just had to add this clip.


1d    Temporarily having vacancy, tips off office worker (6)
TYPIST: Use the outer letters (having vacancy) of ‘temporarily’ followed by an anagram (off) TIPS.

2d    Climbers fix up South African climbing (6)
LIANAS: Start with a synonym for ‘fix’ (to the wall for instance) and reverse it (up – in a down clue) and the abbreviation for ‘South Africa’ – again reversed (climbing – in a down clue).

3d    Infection making revolutionary unravel red flag? (9,5)
GLANDULAR FEVER: An anagram (revolutionary) of UNRAVEL RED FLAG. I was going to add a pictorial hint but didn’t want to put you off your elevenses.

4d    Country cooking range with metal base from China (9)
ARGENTINA: An anagram (cooking) of RANGE followed by a type of soft metal and the last letter (base) of ‘China’. How many of you immediately thought of the type of cooking range manufactured here in Shropshire.

5d    Raise army to protect island (5)
HOIST: Start with a synonym of ‘army’ and include (protect) the single-letter abbreviation for ‘island’.

7d    Large creature with no tail — it’s properly a 22 problem (8)
RHINITIS: Although the answer is gettable from the wordplay – you will need to solve 22 across to make sense of it. The ‘large creature’ here is mercilessly hunted for its horn – without the last letter (no tail) followed by how ‘it’s’ would appear if written without being shortened (properly).

8d    Compensate for broadcast method supporting public (8)
OUTWEIGH: Start with a homophone (broadcast) of ‘method’ which is then preceded (supporting) a synonym to make ‘public’.

9d    Notice they’re given to soldiers on the move? (8,6)
MARCHING ORDERS: Another double definition.

15d    Hemp isn’t assembled on small payloads (9)
SHIPMENTS: An anagram (assembled) of HEMP ISNT followed by (on) the abbreviation for ‘small’.

16d    Cork has a blue house (8)
BUNGALOW: Another ‘lego’ clue – start with a 4 letter synonym for ‘cork’, followed by (on) the letter ‘A’ from the clue and a term to describe being ‘blue’.

17d    Loves fresh doilies on top of sideboard (8)
IDOLISES: An anagram (fresh) of DOILIES followed by (on) the first letter (top of) of ‘sideboard’.

19d    European nation capturing soldiers with a cry of discovery (6)
EUREKA: Major ‘lego’ clue time. Start with the single letter abbreviation of ‘Europe’ followed by the 2 letter abbreviation of our country (not GB) which then contains (capturing) one of the standard abbreviations for soldiers and followed by the ‘A’ from the clue.

20d    Go into wood after climbing plant (6)
MYRTLE: Take a 3 letter synonym for ‘go’ and insert it (into) the name of a tree, then reverse it all (climbing – up in a down clue).

22d    A bit of passion as a lady shows such a tone (5)
NASAL: Our one and only ‘lurker’ of the day.

A very enjoyable puzzle to solve – I particularly enjoyed 27a as I’m a fan of dear old Wallace & Gromit. Which one(s) brought a smile to your face?

The Quick Crossword pun: calf+hairy=car ferry

38 comments on “DT 28447

  1. Very enjoyable, required a little bit of head scratching, and completed at a slow canter – 2.5*/3.5*.

    Many candidates for favourite – 1a, 13a, 14a, 27a, 7d, 8d, 9d, and 19d – and the winner is 13a.

    Thanks to Jay and the Lad.

  2. It’s good to have you back blogging SL with a fine puzzle to boot. I liked the excellent anagram in 3d but I’ll award my gold star to 24a.
    I did vacillate on the Quickie pun between what you’ve written and a type of restaurant.

  3. Lots to enjoy in this terrific Jay puzzle, not least the welcome appearance of my fellow Salopian in the blogger’s chair. I did not find it paricularly straightforward, but the tussle added to the enjoyment. Overall this was 2.5*/4* for me, I did enjoy 4d once I had dispensed with the idea of the Shropshire-based cooking range. Nice misdirection.

    Many thanks to Jay and to SL.

  4. Decided I’m a very odd solver. Often when you rate it ** I struggle a lot and then sometimes I breeze straight through a ****. Perhaps it’s how many pints consumed the night before!

  5. So many great clues here this was a joy to solve. I rated this crossword along with the best of our Sunday Ubermeister, Virgilius. The best for me was maybe 1d. I was stumped with 8d and 2d (without spending undue time on them) so thanks to SL for the hints. Highlight of the blog was the unparalleled partnership of Wallace and Gromit and very apt too.
    Thought 10a clueing was a bit near the bone.
    Rating for me ***/****

  6. Mislead by “drop off” in 25a was looking to lose the first or last letter & stupidly couldn’t see beyond that.
    It was otherwise pretty strakghtforward & started the day off nicely.
    24a my COTD.
    Lions a disappointment (understatement). The winning try was almost worth losing to (I lie).
    Thanks to Jay and especially SL. Welcome back.

  7. Some tricky parsing today like 24a 25a I could go on, but a terrific puzzle all round-a pleasure to solve.
    Once started , got into the flow and finished at ‘ramming speed’. Going for a **/****.Thanks Jay and SL for the blog pics-loved 27A- favourite memory of the film is Grommet in his jail cell reading Crime and Punishment by Fido Dostoyevsky !

    1. It was even better than you thought, the book’s cover showed the author as Fido DOGstoyevsky :-)

  8. Nice to see that the paper wasn’t the pink one for once and that the cooking range wasn’t the usual although, yes, I did fall into the trap on that one!
    Ticks went to 1a plus the 22/7 combo but my favourite was 24a for the image it conjured up.
    Like Gazza, I thought of a different Quickie pun – both seem to work quite well.

    Thanks to Jay and welcome back to the hot seat, SL.

  9. Very enjoyable puzzle – some great clues. Too many to mention really. I think my favourite 10a or was it 8d. **/****.

  10. Oh dear – it rather looks as if it’s going to be one of those “just me” days – I found this very tricky – very enjoyable but it has taken me a long time.
    27a was my last answer for no good reason – dim.
    To begin with I had the answer for 19d where 20d should have gone which meant I was hunting a 23a element ending in a ‘U’ – I don’t think there is one so began to smell a rat and sorted it out.
    On the plus side I did find the one and only lurker without too much trouble.
    Lots of good clues to choose from so I’ll go for 6 and 14a and 3 and 9d. My favourite is probably 1d although I did like the 7d large creature with no tail.
    With thanks to Jay and thanks and a big welcome back to our very own ShropshireLad. :smile:

    1. PS – The alternative Quickie pun didn’t occur to me as I was completely taken over by memories of long channel crossings with small children. :sad:

  11. Very enjoyable puzzle as usual for a Wednesday, all good fun.
    As for the pun – take the second word on it’s own and it’s definitely closer to SL’s interpretation than the foodie alternative so I’m with him; although the given answer could just as easily be a pun for the foodie suggestion!
    Thanks to Jay and welcome back SL.

    1. Kind of you – and others – to comment on ‘my’ interpretation of the ‘quickie pun’. I have to say that I forgot all about it and the plaudits must therefore go to BD as I believe he added it on. :)

          1. I remember one from so many years ago – Finger (5) – Medieval Spanish leader (2,3). Around the time of the great sell off of British Gas. Ring any bells?

            1. No – dim again, and I don’t get Tonto McTavish’s mounted soldiers – I’m clearly having a very bad day! Let’s hope that it doesn’t last too long.

              1. Hi Kath – I believe Tonto is referring to ‘cavalry’. My recollection was ‘digit’ ‘El Cid’ – did you tell Sid :)

  12. Lots of fun today but I have to admit to several bungings-in, viz: 12a, 24a, 8d and 19d hence TVM Shropshire Lad for providing me with four d’oh moments! Unfamiliar with 2d so settled for unparsed ‘llamas’. Thank you Jay.

  13. There was much to savour in this puzzle. 13a, 23a and 12d were my pick of the clues today.

  14. Enjoyable puzzle as usual from Jay. Bit of rsi from all the Lego this time around and I didn’t like 10a but there was so much to enjoy, particularly 3d and 11a.

  15. 2.5/4. Very enjoyable puzzle 24a was my favourite. Thanks to Jay and SL for the review.

  16. All but finished in good time. 25ac and 20d proving stubborn. We went out for lunch and have just picked this up to find they are still as stubborn. I completely missed the reversal indicator in 20d even with the ‘go’ and the tree on my mind thanks for the hint SL. A fine puzzle from Jay and a fine blog from SL. I like the chaplinesque picture of Bob Dylan. He is a fine guitarist indeed.

  17. Like Kath, I found this very tricky and needed the hints for three clues.
    Lots to like here, 7d earns kudos but fave was 9d. I loved the Wallace and Gromit clip, I have some DVDs here, I must dig them out and watch again.
    Thanks to Jay, and to ShropshireLad for helping me finish this, welcome back
    Rushing off to PT in a very wet Miami.

  18. Usual Wednesday fare but far trickier than normal ***/*** 😳 I thought 8d was questionable 🤔 Favourites 7d and 23a Thanks to SL for a “cracking” blog Grommit 😬And of course to Jay 🤗

  19. I found it fairly 14a, but Wednesday puzzles are never less than enjoyable and usually constitute my favourite of the week.

    My three for the podium today were 18a, 23a and 24a.

    Many thanks to Jay, and great to have SL back in the blogging chair.

  20. Good evening everybody.

    A nice puzzle although sadly I was foxed by 2d, which I still don’t get. And is nail a synonym of fix? Not around here I think.


  21. Enjoyed this puzzle today, particularly because our grandaughter, Hannah, helped me over lunch, having finished school early because of finals. Hopefully she will get the cryptic bug! We have actually seen sunshine today, for the first time since last Friday. Woken twice last night by city calling first the home phone and then texting with flood alerts. Thanks for asking Merusa, we are fine but Stoneham Douglas parking lot was like a river when we picked Hannah up, must be low lying there.

    1. Our sun has just come out, the first time in three or four days! Maybe the pool beckons. Glad to know you didn’t have it too badly.

  22. ** for difficulty overall, just pushed there by the combination of 20d and finally 2d, which I thought would never fall.

  23. A weird thing this wavelength malarkey. I found this much easier than Monday or Tuesday. Getting all the long ones across and down in the middle certainly helped.
    As usual, Jay is a master exponent of neat clues, fav was the neat anagram at 3d, last in for no good reason was 21a.
    Thanks to SL and Jay.

  24. Almost a R&W but for the last SE corner where the cry of discovery was a long time coming. I could not make ‘Russia’ fit the clue! Over too soon but great fun while it lasted.
    26a was my fave. 1.5/3* overall.
    Thanks to Jay, and well done that man from Shropshire for his review.

  25. Thanks to all for your kind comments on my return to, albeit temporary, blogging duties. I’ve really enjoyed it and hopefully you’ll all tune in to the next 2 Wednesday blogs. Goodnight to you all :)

  26. And it’s goodnight from me after a fun Jay challenge. I guess I’ll have to go for 11a as Top of the Pops. Ta to Jay and hoorah for SL. Welcome back Jim!

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