High Street by Solemate
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
This week we have another setter making his debut. I hope you enjoy Solemate’s puzzle. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review by Prolixic follows.
A stunningly good crossword from Solemate, probably one of the best first crosswords that we have had in the Rookie corner. The only point to watch, as has been mentioned, is a slight tendency to repeat some wordplay indicators. Ideally, different indicators should be used each time. Other than that, the clues were fair, fun, free from obscurities and a delight to solve. One more like this and Solemate can proceed straight to the Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle.
The theme refers to brands who have stores on the High Street. I spotted ten main answers with two semi-references with 10a (where the store is named in the plural) and 12a where the full name is not used. The main themed answers are indicated with a ** after the clue.
1 Airline doctor loves grass (6) **
BAMBOO – The abbreviation for British Airways (airline) followed by the abbreviation for bachelor of medicine (doctor) and to Os (loves).
4 Excellent way to cook rump (4,4)
WELL DONE – Double definition, the second being how a piece of rump stake is ruined.
10 Archery winners with tale to tell craftsman (9)
GOLDSMITH – The plural of the colour at the centre of the archer’s target (archery winners) followed by a homophone (to tell) of another word for a story or tale.
11 The French revolt after getting rotten meat (5)
OFFAL – A three letter word meaning rotten followed by a reversal (revolt) of the French feminine form of the. A minor point but the “La” revolts or turns. As the plural breaks the surface reading, “the French revolting” would be a way of maintaining both the cryptic reading and the surface reading.
12 Brands book with stag’s head (5)
MARKS – The title of the second of the gospels followed by the first letter (head) of stag.
13 Time and time again? (9)
SENTENCES – How you would describe two periods of confinement in prison.
14 Take in small women with permit (7)
SWALLOW – The abbreviations for small and women followed by a word meaning permit.
16 Rich without starting to show embarrassment. (4) **
LUSH – A word meaning to show embarrassment by turning bright red with the first letter removed (without starting).
19 Preparing a menu to include partridge perhaps? (4) **
GAME – The answer is hidden in (to include) PREPARING A MENU.
21 Office for National Statistics infiltrating satellite creating storm (7) **
MONSOON – The abbreviation for the Office for National Statistics inside (infiltrating) a word for a satellite.
24 Leaders of Welsh Assembly move to new accommodation to gain storage (9) **
WAREHOUSE – The first letters (leaders) to Welsh and Assembly followed by a seven letter word meaning “move to new accommodation”.
25 Sovereign put gold back (5)
ROYAL – A reversal (back) of a three letter word for put or place and the two letter heraldic word for gold.
26 Male attempt to produce food (5) **
MANGO – A three letter word for male followed by a two letter word for an attempt or shot at something.
27 Water plants in empty urinal surrounded by cleaning implements (9)
BULRUSHES – A word for cleaning implements used to sweep around (surround by) the outer letters (empty) of urinal.
28 Deluged debtor in hut (8)
SHOWERED – A five letter word for a debtor inside a four letter word for a hut.
29 Seduces office worker on way back (6)
TEMPTS – A four letter word for an office work followed by a reversal (back) of the abbreviation for street (way). As back has been used as a reversal indicator, a different indicator should ideally have been chosen.
1 One entering illegitimate union having great time embracing French friends (8)
BIGAMIST – A three letter word for great or large followed by the abbreviation for time around (embracing) the French plural for friends.
2 Abuse of whisky leads to red eyes and tantrums (7)
MALTREAT – A four letter word for whiskey followed by the initial letters (leads to) of the final four words of the clue.
3 Refuge where nothing stays the same (5) **
OASIS – The letter representing nothing or love followed by a phrase 2-2 meaning stays the same.
5 Henry hiding in ramshackle leanto brewing moonshine? (7)
ETHANOL – The letter represented by Henry inside (hiding in) an anagram (ramshackle) of LEANTO. I think that brewing here is the link word as in the sense of making.
6 Witnesses relative following attractive man (7- 2)
LOOKERS-ON – A six letter word for an attractive man or woman followed by a three letter word for a male relative.
7 Position of France: on the rocks (6) **
OFFICE – The OF from the clue followed by the single letter indicator for France and a word meaning the rocks, as in diamonds.
8 Recruit unruly clients without leader (6)
ENSLIST – An anagram (unruly) of CLIENTS after removing the first letter (without leader). As we have had leaders already as an initial letter indicator, perhaps a different indicator should be used here.
9 Dances about with tool (6) **
JIGSAW – A four letter word for lively dances followed by the single letter abbreviation for about and the abbreviation for with.
15 Odious schoolmate caught out misbehaving (9)
LOATHSOME – An anagram (misbehaving) of SCHOOLMATE after removing (out) the abbreviation for caught.
17 Posh boy beginning to drive erratically into garage (4,4) **
BODY SHOP – An anagram (erratically) of POSH BOY D (beginning to drive).
18 Two articles left on unknown street by small researchers (8)
ANALYSTS – Two indefinite articles followed by the abbreviation for left, a letter used in algebraic notation for an unknown value, the abbreviation for street and the abbreviation for small. Small has already been used as an indicator for S so ideally a different indicator should have been used.
20 Eastern queen free to be fair (7)
EQUABLE – The abbreviations for Eastern and Queen and a word meaning free to do something. The link word here jars slightly in the cryptic reading of the clue as you have wordplay BE definition.
21 Slime spread over posh breakfast dish (6)
MUESLI – An anagram (spread) of SLIME around a single letter used to mean posh.
22 West Country currents forming wetlands (6)
SWAMPS – The geographical location of the West Country followed by a word meaning electrical currents.
23 Gordon could be a moron (6)
DRONGO – An anagram (could be) of DRONGO.
25 About to adopt unpopular path (5)
ROUTE – The two letter word meaning about includes (to adopt) a three letter word meaning unpopular.