MPP 065 – Review – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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MPP 065 – Review

Monthly Prize Puzzle – 065

October 2017

A Puzzle by Prolixic


A nice easy solve and it wasn’t difficult to spot the ten members of the NATO Phonetic Alphabet but which one was the odd one out? I still maintain there’s a case for picking DELTA as it is the only Greek letter in the list but the correct solution to this month’s question was Uniform as it is the only one that starts with a vowel. Congratulations to David Jenkins, whose name was drawn from the electronic hat and now has the pleasure of choosing a Hamlyn Daily Telegraph Puzzle Book as his prize.


8a     Some money returned from the Midlands (4)
 DIME Hidden in reverse (returned from) thE MIDlands

9a     Latest railway facility for travellers (5)
 HOTEL – HOT (latest) EL (Chicago’s Elevated Railway)

10a     Test half of cases (4)
 EXAM – Half of EXAMples (cases)

11a     Root of soldier and sailor (8)
 MANDRAKE – MAN (soldier) DRAKE (Sir Francis the ‘sailor’)

12a     After dismissing opener, one who dislodges winner (6)
 VICTOR – Dismissing the ‘opener’ of eVICTOR (one who dislodges)

13a     Something used to join natural fibre (6)
 STAPLE – The second definition being wool or other unmanufactured fibre

15a     Old suite refurbished for retirement (8)
 SOLITUDE – An anagram (refurbished) of OLD SUITE

17a     Regular one-on-one class (7)
 UNIFORM – UN (one) I (one) FORM (class)

19a     Everything included in clothing (7)
 OVERALL – Another double definition

22a     Way to pay for Irishman’s heroin (8)
 FOOTPATH – FOOT (pay for) PAT (Irishman) H ((heroin)



24a     See head cut off chunky fruit (6)
 LOQUAT – LO (see) and sQUAT (chunky with its head cut off)

26a     Ancient people‘s caste scattered around Zambia (6)
 AZTEC – An anagram (scattered) of CASTE ‘around’ Z (the IVR code for Zambia)

28a     Drinks some wine before seeing impoverished Americans (8)
 REDNECKS – NECKS (drinks) with RED (some win) ‘before’

30a     Fruit seen regularly in Psalm 1 (4)
 SLOE – pSaLm OnE ‘regularly’



31a     First comes after second – that’s wet! (5)
 MOIST – IST (first) comes after MO (second)

32a     Cockney reportedly gets better fish (4)
EELS – A homophone (reportedly) of ‘eals (gets better)


1d    Trouble arises with Mark in capital city (4)
 LIMA – A reversal (arises) of AIL (trouble) with M (Mark) ‘in’

2d     Shown to be late (4,2)
 HELD UP- And another double definition

3d     That man worried during battle to become singer (8)
 WHEATEAR – HE (that man) ATE (worried) ‘during’ WAR (battle)

4d     Penny leaves distressed shipmate for being faithless (7)
 ATHEISM – An anagram (distressed) of SHIPMATE without the P (Penny leaves)

5d     Everyone embraces first lady in Number 10? (1,5)
 A LEVEL – ALL (everyone) ’embraces’ EVE (first lady) – the solution being an example of the solution to 10a

6d     Mapmaker‘s car on a hill (8)
 MERCATOR – MERC (Mercedes car) A (from the clue) TOR (hill)

7d     Glorious image of prostitute protecting gangster (4)
 HALO – HO (a US slang term for a prostitute) ‘protecting’ AL (Mr Capone, the gangster)

14d     Dance functions (5)
 TANGO – TAN (tangent, function) GO (function)

16d     Model tank contains alluvial deposit (5)
 DELTA – Contained in moDEL TAnk

18d     Produced Irish comedy series second time out (8)
 FATHERED – Remove the second T for Time from FATHER TED

20d     Check naval officer’s detail at sea (8)
 VALIDATE – VA (Vice Admiral) plus an anagram (at sea) of detail

21d     Cleaner’s left with one narcotic cocaine (7)
 CHARLIE – CHAR (cleaner) L (left) I (one) E (Ecstasy, narcotic)

23d    Don‘s assistant secretary over university in Suriname (6)
 ASSUME – Don in the sense of ‘put on’ AS (Assistant Secretary) goes over U (university) in SME (the IVR code for Suriname)

25d     Nice question on British city and Canadian one (6)
 QUEBEC – QUE (a question that might be asked in French-speaking Nice) B (British) EC (the area of London where the city is situated)

27d     Singer gets new lead in film (4)
 ZULU – Change the leading letter of LULU the singer


29d     Weight of flooring holding up large unit(4)
KILO – KO (knockout, flooring) holding a reversal (up) of L (large) I (one unit)

Thanks once again to Prolixic and the BDs, without whom …..

6 comments on “MPP 065 – Review

  1. Many thanks for the review, CS, and congratulations to David on winning this month’s prize. Do we know you by a different name on the blog?

    Not complaining but can I put in C for Charlie as an alternative for the odd man out. It’s the only one of the ten that isn’t pronounced as per the letter it represents.

  2. Congratulations, David. Thanks for the review, CS, especially for explaining the definition of 5d, where I was being dense.

    I chose UNIFORM for the reason given, but after submission also thought of an alternative reason for — thankfully — the same answer: it’s the only one of the list with three syllables, the rest having two.

    24a was new to me, but I got him from the wordplay.
    Not sure I knew 13a as a fibre.
    I labelled the abbreviations used in 23d as “spiky.”

    I do hope the 1d surface doesn’t foretell the birthday bash!

    My favourites were 17a (for the one-on-one), 31a, 21d and my last in, 29d. Thanks again, Prolixic.

  3. Well done, David, and many thanks for the review, CS.

    Unlike Kitty, I chose uniform because it was the only one with three syllables! I hadn’t noticed it was the only one to start with a vowel!

  4. I chose Hotel as it is the only one where the letter represented is not pronounced, IE “OTEL”.
    I suppose if you look hard enough you could makr a case for any of them!

  5. My goodness, it looks like there was a lot of overthinking going on for the answer to the riddle – the only vowel represented in the list (must be my years of service to HM that helped me).

    Congratulations to David, I hope you were not an overthinker.

  6. Thanks Prolixic for an excellent puzzle and CS for the review
    I’m not as familiar with the NATO alphabet as I should be, so wikied it after finishing the puzzle to check which were the relevant solutions. On the wiki page you’re given the morse code for each letter, and I noticed that H is the only one made up entirely of dots. Still picked U, though.

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